Cape Point - new LH low down - where it can be seen in bad weather:
Saturday was a beautiful, sunny, calm day - perfect for sailing the often-rough 40ml from Hout Bay to Simon's Town around the Cape of Good Hope. The wind was so light that, despite the mainsail being fully hoisted, it was more a matter of motoring most of the way in a light, apparent headwind, rather than sailing - the genoa being unfurled for just a short time as we rounded the Cape. We passed very close to Dias Rock, off Cape Point at the entrance to False Bay, before going on past Boulders Bay, with its many penguins, to Simon's Town, to tie up at the False Bay Y.C., adjacent to the Naval Base (the main one in South Africa).
N side of Cape Point, close to the new LH, old LH high up:
It was very nice for me to have company on board - Alastair and daughter Tanzi, together with Melvin - all of whom seemed to enjoy their sail, especially Alastair, who helmed a lot of the way, taking us well inshore in the shallower waters, to avoid the 'washing machine' conditions that are normal a short distance further offshore .... something even he admitted, with his 'local knowledge', was only possible because of the relatively calm conditions. Although a big swell was running, making for spectacular surf crashing onto the beaches (the Kommetjie surfers were out in force, enjoying the day!), the waves were spaced quite well apart and we made sure to keep well out from the breakers!
As we came around the lighthouse, we made HF radio contact with it - today was 'Lighthouse Day' when all the lighthouses in S. Africa (and in many other parts of Africa and all over the world, I heard it claimed) were being manned by radio enthusiasts hoping to make contact with each other and with other 'hams' elsewhere. Melvin made contact with several lighthouses, once he'd woken up sufficiently!
View of Slagkop LH, across the spray and breakers of Kommetjie surf beach, Chapman's Peak on RHS, across Hout Bay to Table Mt in the distance:
Melvin recovers from a very early start (he was up at 5am to be sure of getting to Hout Bay on time!):
Later, we all joined Alistair's family and parents for a visit to the Tibetan teahouse close by for lovely tea and rice-cake before ending up back in Hout Bay for a meal.... My drive back to Simon's Town in the dark over the Chapman's Peak toll-road went fine - I took it very carefully!!
Sunday was grey and rainy, although not as bad as forecast, and I met a few people at the Y.C. here.
Monday "Nereida" was hauled out for rudder fibre-glass repairs (resulting from it being knocked by the wind-steering rudder which came loose in bad seas while lying to the series drogue on passage from the Falklands) - very necessary and rather more extensive than I'd expected, but being dealt with by good workers here. While on the hard, anodes are being replaced and the keel antifouled.
The swirling surge on the narrow approach to the haul-out cradle made for a few worrying moments but, with lots of helping hands, all ended well - with just one slightly bent stanchion to repair later....