Macassar

Original content sourced from Greg Hamerton’s ‘Fresh Air Site Guide’, 5th edition, 2006.

BASIC / B

DESCRIPTION: ‘Swartklip’ offers low sea-cliffs and soaring above the waves.

LAUNCH: This is a Bird Sanctuary and environmentally sensitive. Avoid nesting birds (cliff areas) and the ‘grass’ launch site. Launch +- 500m East of the highest cliffs, where the small carpark leads to a sandy channel. Lay out in the sandy patch before the cliff, and beware of the lip rotor which will try to collapse your wing as you walk to the edge.

WIND: SSW – SE GPS: +- S34o03’ E18o37’
ALTITUDE: 60m high, ceiling 100m ASL (by permission in controlled airspace).

LANDING: Topland with caution, or turn left and soar to the lower beach, or right to the carpark where the dunes cease (only reachable if its soarable).
CAUTIONS: Avoid the sea at high tide there is hardly any beach to land on. The wind often increases in speed quite rapidly, and it will soon be unflyable. If you see whitecaps, get down. Be careful of toplanding upwind of the road, as you can get blown back into the traffic. The ridge-top produces rotor.
DIRECTIONS: Take the coastal road from Muizenberg towards Macassar and Somerset West (Baden Powell Drive). 10km after you pass Strandfontein Coastal Park, look out for the signpost ‘Wolfgat Nature Reserve’ and the seagulls soaring on the right of the road. Keep driving. Just beyond the highest point of the road, beside the cliffs, pull over and park beside the ‘No Dumping’ sign. Vehicles are not safe in this area.
CARETAKER: Overberg, Wolfgat Reserve (Charline McKie granted us permission).

PERMISSION: Contact ATC prior to flying, on (021) 9371116. Last pilot down phone again. Fly at cliff-height – please don’t go up more than 40m – you are in controlled airspace (TMA of Cape Town International Airport). In a S wind, the planes are landing from the far (N) end of the runway, so you don’t cause a problem if you remain low. Police have grounded ‘high’ pilots in the past.