Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A few pics of Last Saturdays Paddle

The calmness of Clifton belies the South Easter that came up while we relaxed in the bay and which made for an interesting paddle back. The combination of Atlantic swells and Wind means large (high) fast - running swells – good surfing conditions if you have the courage. The trick is to put away your fear and concentrate on your paddling speed. Pauli’s Carbon Fibre Epic wanted to take off...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th Paddles

9.00am Saturday - Three Anchor Bay starting at the three anchor bay slipway – opposite kazkazi.
9.30 am Sunday - Simon's Town, usual time usual place.

Monday, December 08, 2008

...and again this Wednesday

Looks like the wind blows til Thursday so let's do Mouille Point again this Wednesday the 10th. 6pm on the water at the launch site opposite Coastal Kayaks. Phone the shop 021 786 2626 or check this blog by around 4pm to see if it's blowing that side as well.
UPDATE 3.45 Wednesday: It's too windy!!! If you want a windy paddle just come over here and we'll run from the bullnose to the beach

Saturday, December 06, 2008


I do apologize for posting the atlantic paddle so late.
The decision to paddle there was a last minute one made at basil’s suggestion the difference in the conditions was remarkable. The sea was flat as a pancake. Basil, Mark and I paddled from three anchor to clifton first beach, landed there, talked crap and paddled back. we even saw a sunfish on the way.
Basil, uncharecteristically, was distracted by the attractive beach patrons and fell out once and nearly twice – both in 10 cm of water- really.
As for Mark – he was just nervous of the real “big sea” but made it safely to the powerboat club for a boerie roll and a beer (or 20). friendly bunch at that club – lots of surfskiers with smart cars use the facilities there too.
some amazing tow vehicles to be seen...I am told that dave and barry went to soetwater? dave must start sharing the crayfish...
best regards paul
Basil came up with this one...
the simons town paddlers are going atlantic tomorrow!
their is a paddle tommorow morning (sunday 07/12/08) starting at the three anchor bay slipway – opposite kazkazi. we are meeting there at 09h00. with the south easter pumping in false bay the conditions should be better there.
time for something different anyway?
try and join us there

Monday, November 24, 2008

Silke's Atlantic crossing

She's off again! Follow here daily progress here

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Surfski Race Sunday 23rd

Local sea kayakers are encouraged to join in the annual NSRI Fundraiser surfski race at Seaforth beach. We normally compete in the 7km short course and the race is on the 23rd November at 9am.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Old but still amusing if you hate Microsoft

The Top Ten Ways The Sport Would Be Different If Microsoft Built Kayaks:
10. A particular model year of kayak wouldn’t be available until AFTER that year, instead of before.
9. Every time you wanted to try a new paddle, you would have to buy a new kayak.
8. Occasionally your kayak would stop dead in the water for no apparent cause. No amount of paddling would budge it. You would have to tow it back to the launch site and restart your kayak. For some strange reason, you would simply just accept this.
7. Two people could not both paddle your kayak unless you paid extra for a ‘95 kayak or NT kayak in which case you would also have to buy an extra seat and expensive new charts.
6. A sophisticated marketing blitz would make you feel like a second-rate tasteless slacker for failing to upgrade your kayak. OOPS — wait a minute — that’s ALREADY happening.
5. Apple would make a kayak with 70% less hull drag, half the weight, watertight in all conditions and twice as stable. Unfortunately, it could be used on only 5% of the existing rivers.
4. Your Microsoft kayak’s compass, weather radio, and sump pump would be replaced with a single “General Kayak Fault” warning light.
3. The enthusiast press would get people excited about the “new” features of Microsoft kayaks, forgetting completely that they had been available in other brands for years.
2. Microsoft’s inconsiderable owners manual would spawn a whole cottage industry of outsiders who would write hundreds of books explaining how to paddle your Microsoft kayak. Amazingly, we would buy all they printed.
1. If you wanted to go kayaking in a group with your club members or friends (known as Network Kayaking), EVERYONE in the group will have BUY special group kayaking accessories; however, only one member of the group (known as the kaysysop) would have the foggiest notion of exactly what they did and no one else would be permitted to operate them.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Writs will be flying - or paddling

I stren-you-arsely deny these scurrilous accusations and can assure the writer of the previous article that I will be consulting with my lawyer, that notorious shark Paul Weber. You can be certain he will be suing the paddling pants off you, whoever you are.

Friday, October 31, 2008


It has been some time since I have placed a post on this Blog.

However I feel compelled to comment on the last Post by one Derek Goldman pertaining to the so called "Kayak Race".

For the sake of brevity I shall keep this as brief as possible. However you will, once you have read this missive, appreciate how difficult it is to do so, given my present emotional state.

Mr Goldman and his Wife whose name I cannot even bring myself to mention, organised this and publicised this"race" - even exhorting us to attend so that we could set a new world record . So far so good. Things then rapidly took a turn for the worse.

This Mr Goldman and his unmentionable wife, on the Friday evening prior to the race, undertook to provide me and my paddling partner with a canoe to race in. he encouraged me to do so (his words) "becuase then you can show everyone else how to steer...(?)"

Needless to say, having been so encouraged by a prominent member of the canoe paddling community to participate and display my undeniable skills, I jumped at the opportunity. Mr Goldman then procured, from his group of drinking buddies (this is the kindest way in which I can describe them), a paddling partner for me. I was assured that she was a top swimmer or something and up to the task. She was not. The evening before the race she withdrew leaving me, so to speak, "up the creek without a paddle partner"") complaining that she was scared of hurting her shoulder (?).

Undeterred I arrived at the race the next day with my single canoe. I was determined to show Goldman, the other one and my erstwhile paddling partner (who was seen lolling around on the beach with a perfectly good shoulder), that I could indeed steer as well as he said.

Goldman, grinning from ear to ear and winking to the unmentionable (he does not grin much you may have noticed) then proceeds to tell me that the "Double" is available and that be brought it with "just in case". (At this point in the story I am starting to tremble). Brimming with innocent enthusiasm I managed to locate an equally naive young lady to accompany me on my journey around the lighthouse - she told me that she had heard that paddling with me is "quite and experience".

I know this is long winded so I will cut to the chase (or lack thereof). Halfway to the lighthouse in a large South - Easter swell my partner asks me rather nervously why all the other canoes are passing us? Why? - The canoe had begun to sink. 5 minutes later it was no longer going over the swell but instead, submarine like, had begun to dive through. My paddling partner (being in front) was gamely carrying on but could not see where she was going (being underwater) and I chivalrously decided that we should turn and head back. Have you ever tried to turn a double K (the make) which has its front hatch full to the brim with seawater away from the wind?

Not being able to either steer the F.. thing or surf with it, we heroically limped back while all the time being soaked by the side - swell and risking imminent capsize.

My point? This is how low Mr Goldman will stoop to make sure he wins. Sadly for him he was soundly thrashed by a whisp of a girl half his age. Serves you right Goldman...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Kayak Raft and Race

The annual kayak race was good fun and had a great turnout, see small report and results here. The "world record" attempt was also good fun but the turnout was disappointing at only 50 boats.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Kayak Day - Long Beach Simons Town - October 26th 2008

As of Saturday morning the forecast stays pretty good with a moderate south easter on the cards.

This is our annual paddling event where all types of kayakers and interested parties can come along and check out the scene in False Bay. It takes place at the beach behind Simon's Town railway station.

The weather forecast as of time of writing is for a not too terrible south easter, which is okay to run the race for most paddlers and won't cause too much havoc with the other events planned.
Should it change however and the weather be too windy on the day, we will make the call either late Saturday or early Sunday to postpone the event to next weekend. This information will appear here on the blog straight away if you have easy internet access or you can call 082 556 9945 where either a recorded message or real live person will give the latest info (No SMSs please, only calls).

The Kayak Race - 9.30am The Kayak Race Day is on! We want it to be a great morning out for racers and non racers alike. There is a 10km long course and 5km short course as usual.

Most Kayaks side by side Record Attempt - 11.30 Recently Muizenberg set a record for most surfers on a wave and we want to set a record for most kayakers rafted together in a "row". Tell everyone you know who owns any type of kayak to bring it along. If you have two kayaks then get a friend to use the spare. We want to get everyone involved and after the race we're going for the record! Actually we don't even know if there is one but let's set that bar high.

Try-a-Kayak - 12 noon We will be bringing a range of kayaks along for demonstration purposes. So if you, your friends or family have not paddled before or you want to try out a particular kayak we will have something for everyone to try.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Wednesday Bring and Braai

On Wednesday the 8th October we are having one of our occasional booze and braais after paddling. Non-paddlers of course also welcome as well, from 6pm onwards. We will be showing an excellent video of a solo paddle expedition around the Scottish islands. Bring your own meat and drink, we will be supplying the salads. Please RSVP if you will be attending.

Aircraft Carrier paddle

A bunch of kayakers and innumerable surfskiers paddled off at various times of the day to see how close we could get to the American aircraft carrier parked in Table Bay. Eddie and I got to about 500 metres before a police launch politely asked us to not come closer. The official exclusion zone was 2 nautical miles.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Saturday Paddle

With the weather report for Sunday 5th October forecast to be a raging South Easter my only choice was to paddle this morning. As I had arranged a Beginners Run I was also looking forward to introducing some of the newer paddlers to our usual summer paddling conditions. You remember the cross chop behind the harbour wall, the spray washing over the deck and, best of all, surfing back! As it happens, most of the beginners had checked the wind report, seen the forecast and decided today wasn't the kind of weather they would enjoy so I was able to enjoy the ocean with just a couple of nearly new paddlers for company. I was surprised not to see more of the ususal paddlers on the sea given Sunday's forecast but maybe everyone has gone to the boat show! Anyway we had a close up of this ship which is docked in Simon's Town.
Don't forget the Bring and Braai Video Evening this Wednesday at the shop. Please RSVP if you are coming.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Penguins - you either love 'em or hate 'em

Author and regular paddler Jennifer Stern has published this article on the penguins of Boulders Beach.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Saturday 13th Paddle

Pictures from William and Margot King of the Kalk Bay paddle

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Saturday 6th September Paddle

As luck would have it, the ship sailed the night before but it was still a beautiful day and we set off to Kalk Bay and back instead. There were at least 4 whales nearby on the trip, the last of which is pictured here nearby the harbour entrance. Clicking the picture should bring up a larger view.

Earlier: Sunday looks to be quite windy we are also having a paddle this Saturday as well. Be at Berthas for paddling off at 8.30am. The plan is to paddle out to the big red ship anchored in the bay - it about 7km each way.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Silke is yachting across the Atlantic

Silke is yachting across the Atlantic and attempting to send us an SMS via sattelite phone everyday with her position. You can follow her progress HERE

Monday, September 01, 2008

Storm Pictures

While we wait to see what devastation Gustav wreaks on New Orleans, here are some pictures and a video of what our comparatively minor gales of the weekend looked like viewed from Mouille Point.

If the Youtube clip above does not work try here

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Whale and Dolphin encounters

Alan Heydorn has written these wonderful articles about whale and dolphin encounters in our Cape waters.
Article one - Article two

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Full Moon Paddle - Saturday 16th August 6pm

Not the most convenient day of the week but my pleas to the Moon for a date change fell on deaf ears and it is still happening on Saturday. So come on anyway, the forecast as of Wednesday looks okay.

As of Friday afternoon the forecast is still reasonable. Looking good!

And as of Saturday morning it will probably be a fresh south easter so a calm paddle is unlikely.

And now as at 12.45 the wind has dropped and it's really nice out there.

It's 2pm and the wind has picked up slightly, around 30kph and forming small whitecaps.

Because of the rugby it's probably a good idea to start at 6pm rather than 5.30

By the way, it's a partial eclipse tonight but it only begins around 9.30 so we will be well off the water but step outside later to have a look.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Kommetjie Paddle Report

Although the forecast was for light winds and clear skies the group at the launch sight stared out to sea at a fog bank reducing visibility to less than 100 meters but we knew from experience it would lift soon. And it did - by the time we were ready to go the fog been reduced to cloud and the wind had picked up to around 25kph. We headed through the gap in the surf where the fishing boats launch and paddled directly out to sea for nearly a kilometer before turning right so as to avoid the large breaks at the reef off The Kom. We then paddled a direct line toward Hout Bay, into the wind but with the swell behind, aiming for Chapman's Peak and its famous drive.

This route is more than a kilometre off shore and around an hour and a half later we stopped just below the imposing cliffs below the Hout Bay Lookout Point, opened our snacks and rocked in the choppy clapotis bouncing off the cliffs.

Turning with the wind at our backs we caught some reasonably good surfing on the wind waves back to Kommetjie to search for that thin channel that can take you back to the launch site and avoid the surf break.

Group dynamics:
14 paddlers -
9 men, 5 women.
1 surfski, 2 plastics and 11 composite kayaks made up of:
7 Epics 16 or 18 footers, 2 skuas, 2 greenland style

Click on a picture to see the larger version.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Wed 18th and Sunday 22nd

Wednesday evening paddle looks to be rainy but almost no wind so should be very nice paddling if you wear something rainproof.

This Sunday looks to be fabulous weather so we're doing something different and paddling from Kommetjie to Chapmans Peak and back. Meet Sunday to be on the water at 9am at The Kom at Kommetjie.

As of Saturday morning the forecast is still good so we will almost certainly be going ahead. Remember this is an open water paddle of at least 20 kms so you must be fit, experienced and able to paddle at a decent pace.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Full Moon Paddle - Tuesday 20 May 5.30pm

15.30 - Wind has picked up a bit to 10m per sec, NE oddly enough, and it's still cloudy. Almost certain to be better than tomorrow so paddle is still on unless it gets worse.
14.15 - Thunderstorm seems to have passed and it's not currently looking like rain but it is overcast. Not much wind so it's paddleable.
10.30 - Windfinder forecasts rain by this afternoon. Will update again at 2pm ish
Full moon is actually on Tuesday and at this stage the weather forecast for Wednesday is lousy. Therefore we are having the paddle on Tuesday evening (and if the clouds are absent) we should see the moon rise over the mountains and light up our return. If the evening looks like a washout we can try again on Friday evening which looks clearer, less windy and warmer - but moonless. We will update the blog several times on Tuesday with current conditions but if you are not online just call the office for the go ahead. Note the 5.30 start just for the moonlight paddle!!!!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Buffels Bay to Simon's Town pictures

The day's weather turned out to be perfect for this trip with a moderate to fresh wind pushing us along.

It took around three hours to paddle the 19 or so kilometres from Buffels to Long Beach Simon's Town.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Buffels Bay to Simon's Town paddle

Our first "away" trip is scheduled for this Sunday 27th April. Ideal weather is a moderate to fresh south easter so if the designated day does not oblige weather wise it will postponed to the following Sunday (or the Sunday after until it happens). Those wanting to paddle should meet at 8.30am in the Long Beach (behind Simon's Town Station) carpark where we will car pool up to reduce the number of vehicles driving to the reserve. Alternative routes will be decided there if the weather tells us to. Remember this is a longer and more exposed trip than the usual Sunday paddle. Those wishing to do the normal Sunday paddle please meet at the Simon's Town Jetty as usual.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

...and video as well

I have posted a short video of the paddle at this address . Unfortunately it has been expanded to a size larger than it should be viewed at so it's not very sharp. Music is nice though.

Evening Paddle

Here are some images from last night's excellent paddle to Ark rock and thence the Lighthouse. Click on the image to see a larger version, or open each one in a new window or tab.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Wind statistics

I've done some research into the incessant, ceaseless, constant, continual, unabating, interminable, endless, unending, never-ending, everlasting, eternal, perpetual, continuous, nonstop, uninterrupted, unbroken, unremitting, persistent, relentless, unrelenting, unrelieved, sustained south easter blows we've been having and you can view the statistics here.
Sorry about that relentless unrelenting stream of similes.
Here's a picture of Mark at Cape Point last week, when we had a wind break, to relieve the tension.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Wednesday 9th Paddle

After almost a week of nice weather - apart from last Sunday with its winter storm - the south easter seems to be back for the next week. The coming weekend looks to be particularly windy if the forecast proves to be true.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Wednesday 2nd Paddle

At last the wind seems to have abated for while - welcome winter? Wednesday evening looks like it will be very calm so come on down to Simon's Town for a paddle. We will have the new Sea Bear kayak there as well so people can give it a try out if there's time.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Lack of post

Sorry that there has been so little action on this blog of late but it's frankly been too depressing to twice weekly have to complain that it's too windy for a decent paddle! Everybody who has lived here for a while is of the same opinion as me - it's the longest period of consistent high winds that anyone can remember. Those few who like the really strong winds to do downwind runs have had a lot of fun however. You can watch a short video of one here. A few years ago we had a terrible south-easter season over Christmas which prompted me to do a comparison with the previous year. See it here if interested. I will try and see if I can do it again for this period if it doesn't depress me too much.
Anyway this weekend still looks very windy with perhaps a drop by Tuesday as it turns northerly. Next Wednesday is forecast for light northerlies so it's a more wintery feel.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Wednesday 20th Feb Paddle

Looks like the wind is still playing a bit of merry hell with us and considering that Windfinder has been giving us inaccurate forecasts for wind speeds this year it will probably be more than 10m/s. Give us a call at the shop if you are not online to check Roman Rock and we will tell you how it's looking. Appears that a front is coming in on Sunday and Monday so while it's turning, Friday and Saturday look good days for a gentler paddle. We should try for a paddle at Simon's Town 4.30pm on Friday.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Wednesday Paddle and Braai

As of 9am this morning the forecast looks very good with the wind dropping all day. In fact the next week looks like the relentless howling south easter might be over - at least for a while. Don't forget the bring and braai at Paddlers this evening from 5.30 onwards.

Monday, January 28, 2008

With a bit of luck the howling gales of the last week may moderate to make Wednesday's paddle a possibility. Windfinder forecasts have not been too accurate during the last couple of weeks of south-easters. Where they have predicted 10 to 12 m/s (36 to 42 kph) actual speeds have been almost twice that. However when they have predicted lower speeds these days have tended to be only slightly higher in reality. Hopefully Wednesday might be more accurate - Weather SA is forecasting fresh south easter.

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