The morning arrived and the sun was burning out across the world – a perfect scorching day for climbing a mountain – not! Undeterred I hailed a taxi from the yacht club with rucksack and mountaineering determination but with some doubt that either of the guys would be there to join me! After a 10 minute wait I was surprised to see a party of four brave hearted souls (idiots) like myself descend from a mini-bus ready for our slow-roasted challenge.
We finally found the start of our route – up Platiklipp Gorge – a mile along from the cable car station and set off up the path both eagerly and also painfully aware that it was already far too hot and we should have set of at least 2 hours earlier!
I was also painfully aware that I'd had at least four glasses of red wine too many the previous night, with Lou, Gary, Tom, Amanda and Jonathan at the Green Dolphin! Hmmmmm!

We set off at a cracking pace with Dan head-down and leading the way in true ex-army tradition.  John and Jim graciously took up the rear guard while Sarah and I, sandwiched in between were soon agreeing that shorter legs and large steps up steep boulders didn't mix and we would in effect have done twice the climb of the boys by the time we reached the top.

After 2 and a bit hours of much huffing and puffing, a considerable amount of gulping of water, a very reserved dose of swearing at Dan under our breath who in his enthusiasm had missed a turn and taken us about a mile along the wrong route(!), we did eventually reach the summit of Table Mountain. The views were indeed breath-taking – from all sides and almost made me forget my tired legs (which let's face it have done no exercise for the last 3 months) or the fact that half-way up and well on the way to cardiac arrest, I was feeling like sailing round the world was nothing of a challenge to climbing this lump of rock in 43 degree heat!

We were all contemplating the prospect of abseiling back down – which we didn't do because  a) we didn't have enough cash between us and there was no credit card machine up there and  b) because you don't abseil down – you abseil part of the way down to a point from where you then have to climb back up to the top again and go down a different route!
I was distracted from my guilt at my own laziness by a face that I recognised. After a loud exclamation of “India?!” the owner of the name – India Alton, one of the technical operators form the BBC in Hull (where I worked before heading for the high seas) turned round with equal amazement!  A quick hug and catch-up later and I left India in the queue to do the Abseil (she'd be able to tell me about it at a later date) and we headed for the cable car back down and the ice-cream we'd dreamed about all the way up!

The expedition team split up – most of them flying back to England, to their desks and their meetings and I headed back down to the V&A Waterfront where my own office/home for the next 8 months was due to arrive. All the boats were moving there for the final weekend of our stay to showcase the race and allow the boats to be visited by anyone interested; particularly as the recruitment team were in town and keen to show off the boats to anyone thinking of signing up for the next race.

We moored up in line and I have to admit the fleet looked very impressive, flying all its branded colours and with Table Mountain in the background.  There was just time for a quick shower and then we were off to Greens restaurant for a crew dinner.  This was our final chance to have a proper relax together before the start of Leg 3 and the next and probably the most anticipated part of our round the world adventure.