Roland's Cave (9-10 June 2018)

Updated: Nov 22, 2018

Finally.

Roland's Cave is one of the most renowned cave's in the Drakensberg, for its incredible outlook onto the Cathedral Range. It captured my interest back in 2015 when a fellow hiker Ingrid mentioned it to me. I had to go. In 2016 we organised a trip to the cave which went horribly awry: five of us squished into a three man tent on a pretty narrow inverse saddle. Winds of 70km/hr gusting up from the valley. I spent the night awake. Being picked up by the wind and tumbled onto my friend-who pretended to be sleeping.



Needless to say we didn't find the cave. And even more obvious should be the desire it stirred in me. (A story about this hike will come in time).


Finally.

It was 9 June 2018 and a team of twelve of us woke up at Mike's Hut. The sky was clear, onesies were stripped off and replaced with hiking boots. The hut was locked. Unlocked. And then locked on repeat.


Finally.

We headed up the remainder of Mike's Pass, past the met station and up the 1.5km hill to the Old Fire Lookout.


Photo Credit: Graeme Holliday

The day continued easily as we slowly climbed Organ Pipes Pass. The team was strong and helpful. My mum joined us for this hike and by the time I took her pack at the end of the ascent, it was virtually empty. We walked below the organ pipes collecting water from one of the streams before entering Windy Gap. Windy Gap was the final challenge for the team as it a section of steep pass.



Locating Roland's Cave once on the escarpment was not challenging as a path as developed over time. The final 50m traverse is along a narrow, path with a sheer 100m drop accompanying you.

The evening was spent admiring the view, consuming copious amounts of food and capturing "The BEST Photo Ever". I'm just going to insert photographs here, because in all honesty no words do this pace justice.





Photo credit: Graeme Holliday

"The BEST Photo Ever"

Yes, the above image was much better in our imagination.


After watching the sunrise on Sunday morning we heading back down Organ Pipes Pass and reality: fully rejuvenated by the beauty of the Drakensberg.

Photo credit: Graeme Holliday

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