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Friday, 07 March 2014

Rock Climbing by the Sea

Written by Antoinette Marie
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       I have always been afraid of heights. Still, that being said, I have always wanted to go rock climbing. I don’t know why. Maybe it was watching Tom Cruise hang on the side of a cliff in Mission Impossible and I became inspired. Of course when the camera panned out and you saw him just holding on with his hands outstretched I decided, maybe that isn’t for me after all. But I can’t help but come back to the idea of it and after seeing my cousin’s multitude of pictures of her doing the same thing as Cruise, I decided, why not. I only live once. 

       Morgan Bay is part of the Wild Coast in South Africa and rock climbers from all over come here to climb the sea walls next to the ocean.  There are all kind of trails, whether you’re a novice like me or a trained rocker climber. Some of the trails are bolted routes with trad lines, that you can top-rope. Most of the routes you’ll be climbing have definite crevices in the rock for easy climbing. While there are seven bolted routes, you can find hundreds of trails all over the cliff wall. The more famous trails are named like the “ticket to ride,” “the feeling is tight” and “the carnival is over.” Each area is named, so if you’re with friends but want to rock climb solo (there are trails just for this) you can meet up at a selected place. 

Down below at the beach you can use the campsite and enjoy the lagoon. At the lagoon you can go swimming and boating in its waters or instead just sit back and watch the wildlife that lives here. There are horse trails for one day or over-night excursions that can last up to two weeks. The trails will take you through villages, the forest, past waterfalls and the beaches. Which if you’re like me, might decide rock climbing is like skiing; I’m better off drinking hot chocolate in the lodge or if I’m at Morgan Bay, give rock climbing a try, realize as I’m dangling off the edge, horse-back riding or lazily wading through the water at the lagoon might be the better option; while I take pictures of my friends reaching the top of the cliff. 


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