|Lion's Head / Xammi Mũ!’ab|
Lion's Head from the slopes of Table Mountain
|Elevation||669 m (2,195 ft)|
|Location||Western Cape, South Africa|
|Age of rock||Silurian/Ordovician|
Lion's Head ( !Orakobab: Xammi Mũ!’ab)[ citation needed ] is a mountain in Cape Town, South Africa, between Table Mountain and Signal Hill. Lion's Head peaks at 669 metres (2,195 ft) above sea level. The peak forms part of a dramatic backdrop to the city of Cape Town and is part of the Table Mountain National Park.
The suburbs of the city surround the peak and Signal Hill on almost all sides, but strict management by city authorities has kept development of housing off the higher ground. The area is significant to the Cape Malay community, who historically lived in the Bo-Kaap quarter close to Lion's Head.
There are a number of historic graves and shrines ( kramat s) of Malay leaders on the lower slopes and on Signal Hill.
In the 17th century the peak was known as Leeuwen Kop (Lion's Head) by the Dutch, and Signal Hill was known as Leeuwen Staart (Lion's Tail), as the shape resembles a crouching lion or a sphinx. The English in the 17th Century called the peak Sugar Loaf.
In 1897 gold was discovered on Lion's Head. A company was floated and a shaft sunk to a depth of more than 30 meters. However, the grade was too low, and the mine closed in the following year. Subsequently the shaft was filled in and a small depression is all that remains today.
Lion's Head is known for its views of both the city and the Atlantic Seaboard, and the hour-long walk to the top is particularly popular during full moon.Its slopes are also used as a launching point for paragliders.
The upper part of the peak consists of flat-lying Table Mountain sandstone and the lower slopes are formed by the Cape Granite and the Malmesbury formation, which are older Precambrian rocks.
Lion's Head is covered in fynbos (indigenous Cape vegetation), with an unusually rich biodiversity that supports a variety of small animals. Three main vegetation types can be found in this relatively small area. All three of them are endemic to the city of Cape Town and can be found nowhere else. Most of Lion's Head is covered in endangered Granite Fynbos, which fades into Peninsula Shale Renosterveld (critically endangered) on the lower slopes towards Signal Hill in the north. Right on the summit of Lion's Head however, is a tiny patch of endangered Sandstone Fynbos, a different ecosystem that is also found nearby on the top of Table Mountain.
Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain forming a prominent landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town in South Africa. It is a significant tourist attraction, with many visitors using the cableway or hiking to the top. The mountain forms part of the Table Mountain National Park, and part of the lands formerly ranged by Khoe-speaking clans, such as the !Uriǁʼaes. It is home to a large array of mostly endemic fauna and flora.
Fynbos is a small belt of natural shrubland or heathland vegetation located in the Western Cape and Eastern Cape provinces of South Africa. This area is predominantly coastal and mountainous, with a Mediterranean climate and rainy winters. The fynbos ecoregion is within the Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and scrub biome. In fields related to biogeography, fynbos is known for its exceptional degree of biodiversity and endemism, consisting about 80% species of the Cape floral kingdom where nearly 6,000 of them are endemic. This land continues to face severe human-caused threats, but due to the many economic uses of the fynbos, conservation efforts are being made to help restore it.
Devil's Peak is part of the mountainous backdrop to Cape Town, South Africa. When looking at Table Mountain from the city centre, or when looking at the standard picture postcard view of the mountain, the skyline is from left to right: the spire of Devil's Peak, the flat mesa of Table Mountain, the dome of Lion's Head and Signal Hill.
Signal Hill, or Lion's Rump, is a landmark flat-topped hill located in Cape Town, next to Lion's Head and Table Mountain.
The Cape Peninsula is a generally rocky peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean at the south-western extremity of the African continent. At the southern end of the peninsula are Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope. On the northern end is Table Mountain, overlooking Cape Town, South Africa. The peninsula is 52 km long from Mouille point in the north to Cape Point in the south. The Peninsula has been an island on and off for the past 5 million years, as sea levels fell and rose with the ice age and interglacial global warming cycles of, particularly, the Pleistocene. The last time that the Peninsula was an island was about 1.5 million years ago. Soon afterwards it was joined to the mainland by the emergence from the sea of the sandy area now known as the Cape Flats. The towns and villages of the Cape Peninsula and Cape Flats now form part of the City of Cape Town Metropolitan Municipality.
Constantiaberg is a large, whalebacked mountain that forms part of the mountainous spine of the Cape Peninsula in Table Mountain National Park, Cape Town, South Africa. It lies about 7 km south of Table Mountain, on the southern side of Constantia Nek. The mountain is 927 m high. It is not known who first ascended the peak.
Chapman's Peak is the name of a mountain on the western side of the Cape Peninsula, between Hout Bay and Noordhoek in Cape Town, South Africa. The western flank of the mountain falls sharply for hundreds of metres into the Atlantic Ocean, and a road, known as Chapman's Peak Drive, hugs the near-vertical face of the mountain, linking Hout Bay to Noordhoek. Tourists and locals often stop at viewpoints along this road, which offer views of Hout Bay, The Sentinel Peak and surrounds, as well as over Noordhoek Beach.
Table Mountain National Park, previously known as the Cape Peninsula National Park, is a national park in Cape Town, South Africa, proclaimed on 29 May 1998, for the purpose of protecting the natural environment of the Table Mountain Chain, and in particular the rare fynbos vegetation. The park is managed by South African National Parks. The property is included as part of the UNESCO Cape Floral Region World Heritage Site.
The Cape Floristic Region is a floristic region located near the southern tip of South Africa. It is the only floristic region of the Cape Floristic Kingdom, and includes only one floristic province, known as the Cape Floristic Province.
The Biodiversity of Cape Town is the variety and variability of life within the geographical extent of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality, excluding the Prince Edward Islands. The terrestrial vegetation is particularly diverse and much of it is endemic to the city and its vicinity. Terrestrial and freshwater animal life is heavily impacted by urban development and habitat degradation. Marine life of the waters immediately adjacent to the city along the Cape Peninsula and in False Bay is also diverse, and while also impacted by human activity, the habitats are relatively intact.
Kogelberg Sandstone Fynbos is a critically endangered vegetation type occurring in the far south of the Western Cape, South Africa.
Peninsula Granite Fynbos is an endangered Fynbos vegetation type which is endemic to the city of Cape Town and occurs nowhere else. It is a unique type of tall, dense and diverse scrubland, scattered with trees. It can be found all along the belt of granite that encircles Table Mountain.
Peninsula Shale Renosterveld (PSR) is a unique vegetation type that is found only on the slopes of Signal Hill and Devil's Peak in Cape Town, South Africa. It is critically endangered and exists nowhere else.
Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos is a unique and endangered vegetation type that is endemic to the Cape Peninsula in Cape Town. This type of Mountain Fynbos occurs on very poor, acidic soils but is incredibly rich in biodiversity with an enormous number of plant species – many of which occur nowhere else. Due to its poor soils and steep, inaccessible location, it has not been developed for farming or houses, and consequently it is relatively well conserved.
Swartland Shale Renosterveld is a critically endangered vegetation type of the Western Cape, South Africa.
Cape Winelands Shale Fynbos is a vegetation type that naturally occurs in the Cape Winelands of the Western Cape, South Africa.
Blaauwberg Nature Reserve was proclaimed a local and provincial nature reserve in 2007. The reserve has views down fynbos slopes, across the city, to seven kilometres of rocky and sandy coastline and the ocean and beyond. The reserve presents itself as one of the few viewpoints in the world from where you can see two proclaimed world heritage sites, namely Table Mountain and Robben Island.
Cecilia is a section of the Table Mountain National Park on the lower eastern slopes of Table Mountain in Cape Town, located just to the south of Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. It was previously used for commercial logging and known as Cecilia Forest or Cecilia Plantation, but has now been given protected status and integrated into the National Park.
Tokai Park, previously known as "Tokai Forest", is a small wing, about 600 ha, of the greater Table Mountain National Park in Cape Town, South Africa. Tokai Park is made up of two sections: upper and lower Tokai Park. Lower Tokai Park is flat, and characterized by the threatened Cape Flats Sand Fynbos. Upper Tokai Park is on the slopes of Constantiaberg Mountain, and consists of conservation area as well as the Tokai Arboretum. Upper Tokai Park is characterized by Peninsula Granite Fynbos, Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos and Afromontane Forest and noted for its diversity.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lion's Head .|