Updating: #12ApostlesFire trends in Cape Town as mountain slopes burn

cape town fire 12 apostles vws wildfires twitter

Update, 13 Oct, 9.30am: The fire between Camps Bay and Llandudno on Cape Town’s 12 Apostles mountain range is still burning, this according to reports from firefighters and eyewitnesses.

The blaze, fanned by strong winds, was at its most intense Thursday evening.

Friday morning paints a slightly different picture.

The smoke plume is visible from Stellenbosch, Noordhoek, and across Cape Town’s southern suburbs.

Victoria Road has also been reopened for traffic.

Update, 12 Oct, 8.40pm: According to Working On Fire — another organisation fighting the 12 Apostles fire — the 12 Apostles Hotel has been evacuated.

“Buses are assisting with evacuation. Fire spreading around the hotel heading towards the Oudekraal picnic area,” tweeted Working on Fire.

The Hotel is situated on the lower slopes of the mountain range.

Update, 12 Oct, 8pm: More photographs of the 12 Apostles fire near Camps Bay continue to flood the likes of Twitter, as the fire continues to rage.

The latest snaps, taken just prior to sunset on Thursday, suggest that the fire is now occupying a vast swathe of the mountain slope.

Volunteer Wildfire Services, one of the organisations battling the blaze, called it a “a huge spreading fire” in a tweet.

Victoria Road, the primary access road between Hout Bay and Cape Town’s Atlantic suburbs has been closed to traffic from Camps Bay.

Update, 12 Oct, 4.30pm: Volunteer Wildfire Services on Thursday afternoon posted an update to Twitter, noting that the 12 Apostles fire has “flared up significantly due to erratic winds”.

“Thick smoke obscuring Victoria Drive. Please stay clear of this area & find a different route. Plz do NOT be a fire tourist,” it wrote in another tweet.

Update, 12 Oct, 10am: The fire on the 12 Apostles mountain range continues to burn, but Table Mountain National Park officials have noted that the situation “looks much better than yesterday”.

“We currently have 32 Working on Fire, 10 NCC Environmental Wildfires, 2 vehicles, 2 heavy duty pumps and one SANDF Helicopter. There are a lot of hot spot areas that will be the focus of the day. The wind is picking up and direction changes with a SE wind is a concern,” writes Working On Fire, quoting Table Mountain National Park.

The below video shot by Working On Fire shows the current condition of the blaze.

Other images uploaded to social media this morning depicts the damage to vegetation.

Update, 11 Oct, 7.30pm: As of 7.15pm, the fire on the 12 Apostles mountain range above Oudekraal has not been contained. This according to a tweet by Working On Fire.

“120 hectares” of land has been burnt, while “150 firefighters” were at the scene.

Original article: While the north and east of South Africa experienced hail, flooding and, in some cases, mudslides this week, Cape Town is today experiencing its first notable wildfire of the summer.

A wildfire is currently burning along the slopes of the 12 Apostles mountain range above Oudekraal, between the 12 Apostles Hotel and Camps Bay.

“More than 25 firefighters from the Department of Environmental Affairs Working on Fire programme are assisting the SANParks in containing the OudeKraal Fire,” wrote SANParks on the Table Mountain National Park Facebook page.

A SANDF chopper is also at the scene.

In a Facebook post, VWS confirmed that crews from the Newlands and South Peninsula VWS teams were working alongside the team from the Table Mountain National Park.

#12ApostlesFire is currently trending on Twitter in Cape Town after Volunteer Wildfire Services (@VWSWildfires) tweeted an initial warning to Capetonians.

Cape Town residents and firefighters have also uploaded images and videos to social media of the fire, and the smoke currently blowing across the Southern Suburbs.

The smoke can also be seen from Milnerton.

Instagram users have also posted pictures of the fire.

Waldbrand#wildfire#campsbay #

A post shared by Catering#Kochkurse#Take Away (@nadja7063) on

The 12 Apostles Hotel tweeted at around 4pm that the fire is “under control”.

Volunteer Wildfire Services have asked road users to keep clear of the area.


4pm: added a tweet from the 12 Apostles Hotel, and comment from SANPark’s Table Mountain National Park Facebook page.
4.30pm: added images from Instagram, and updates from VWS and Working On Fire.

This is a developing story…

Andy Walker, former editor


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