Antoniesgat Traditional Geocache
SawaSawa: Enforced archive due to the most unfortunate and regrettable blanket ban on Cape Point caches
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A short, easy, stony, grassy and finally rocky walk in the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve along part of the wildest stretch of False Bay coast ending on the lip of an awesome chasm.
Gat (probably Middle Dutch) is a narrow passage leading inland from the shore.
This remarkable, beautiful, rugged and isolated spot marks the start of the orange and red sea cliffs which continue to Cape Point and include the amazing Rooikrans Angling Ledges some 500m further south-east.
The stories surrounding Antoniesgat originate in Dutch colonial history, eighteenth-century slavery, and the nearby Simon's Town Muslim community. For more details and some stunning pictures see (visit link)
‘. . . No matter how intricately woven the colourful web of suppositions surrounding Antoniesgat may become, nothing can detract from its unspoilt natural beauty and isolation. In this last sense, it is indeed a "spiritual" place’
As to how the cave formed . . . ‘Many of the caves in the Southern Part of the Cape Peninsula are active sea caves. There are a number of small inlets in the coastal sandstone cliffs that are relatively square in shape, and often have a cave/crack in the inner corners. It appears that the erosion takes place along the vertical joints, and simultaneously along some of the softer, horizontal shale beds. This leaves a piece of cliff only attached to the main land on one side, with the side supports and lower support eaten away. When the strain gets too much, the block collapses, and crumbles. Once the debris has been washed away by the action of the sea, a square inlet remains, as do the remnants of the cave. In places where the upper layer is quite hard, the block ends up in the middle of the inlet, with a channel running down each side. This means that the joints along which the caves have formed, and the caves themselves, also form an important link in determining what the coastline looks like. Antonies Gat is a high, narrow sea cave in Table Mountain Sandstone. Access to the cave from land is via a steep, dangerous descent. Although the entrance is well known, there are no recorded surveys or descriptions of the cave. (quoted from (visit link) which gives fascinating descriptions of many other caves in the area)
To reach the cache (approx 25 mins):
Park at or near the end of the road leading south from Buffels Bay at S 34 19.513 E 18 27.922. Head South along the trail above the rocky beach and continue along a grassy stretch passing beneath Matrooskop (108m) a small rocky hill to the West to the top of a grassy rise just west of a sloping rock slab at S 34 20.145 E 18 28.138.
Continue on down the rise and further south along the trail passing a small boulder strewn beach and the junction with the trail leading up to Rooikrans parking area (and access to the Rooikrans Angling Ledges) at S 34 20.192 E 18 28.154 to the start of the final rocky part of the trail at S 32 20.205 E 18 28.162 by a small cairn on the nearby rock.
Continue to the end corner of the trail below a rocky nose-shaped outcrop at S 34 20.225 E 18 28.173. The cache is hidden about 5m above ground level in a niche in the corner of the rocks just to the north of the nose.
You will no doubt want to spend some time gazing around the corner at the amazing sight to behold and probably to crawl(?) onto the flat conveniently placed viewing slab (there is another in a higher but somewhat safer area above the nose) – but do please take care whatever you do in this exposed area!
Note: before replacing the cache, please ensure that the lid is correctly closed - it should give a definite click when in the right position - just push down on it. The previous cache got waterlogged & had to be replaced due to careless lid replacement on an otherwise fully functional container. Thanks!
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