Sir Lowry’s Pass

A regular site that offers soaring, thermalling and cross-country, with superb views. The long mountain chain extends in a fairly consistent ridge to the south. To the north of takeoff the ridge rises to become towering mountain peaks, then curves to form a semicircle. Thermals can be strong, taking you high up and away from the earth, into the blue.

Flying from Sir Lowry's Pass
Flying from Sir Lowry’s Pass. Pic by Barry Pedersen of Birdmen Paragliding


  • Valid SAHPA Membership with minimum of a Basic licence (IPPI 4)
  • Foreign Pilots must be in possession of a SAHPA Foreign Membership


  • North-West (NW) to South-West (SW)
  • Severe wind gradient in a North-West wind.
  • If the wind swings South, conditions will get very turbulent, and toplanding dangerous.
  • It is sometimes flyable with a light SE, in lee-side wind-shadow conditions. Watch the ocean for signs of the wind-line deteriorating.


  • GPS: +- S34o08.917’ E18o55.65’
  • Height: 320m (420m ASL)
  • Airspace ceiling: 1200m ASL.
Satellite image showing the launch at Sir Lowry's Pass
Satellite image showing the launch at Sir Lowry’s Pass.


Launch for competent pilots (very good ground-handling skills) from the grassed slope below the wall, where turbulence from the big rocks to the right or left can make it risky. If you misjudge the wind, you are likely to get blown back into the carpark.

Launch site at Sir Lowry's Pass
Launch site at Sir Lowry’s Pass. Pic by Barry Pedersen of Birdmen Paragliding.

HG: A-grade lower launch is about 500m down the road, just below the railway line.


At the base of the pass, on the South side of the road, before the pine trees is a bald spot. Anywhere close by, in the low bushes is okay, but be careful not to damage the sensitive fynbos. Be careful of the big set of powerlines on final approach on the far side of the landing spot, between it and the highway. Please do not land too close to the road, as you may cause an accident. More experienced pilots can land a little further on, at the second clearing where the retrieval road turns off the base of the pass. Top landing is not recommended when the carpark is congested (weekends, holidays) or for Basic Pilots. If the air is thermic or the wind crossed, top-landing is very risky.

Landing site at Sir Lowry's Pass
Landing site at Sir Lowry’s Pass. Pic by Barry Pedersen of Birdmen Paragliding.


N2 towards Caledon, at the top of the Sir Lowry’s Pass, turn right into the viewsite. Beware of baboons (keep windows closed and food out of sight).

Cautionary Notes

  • Light aircraft fly beneath the controlled airspace. Beware!They will come over at the low point (the Pass). An air-band radio would help to avoid a conflict.


  • Overberg PG Club
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IMPORTANT: The SAHPA Site Guide is not a substitute for a detailed site briefing from an instructor or experienced local pilot. While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and relevance of information contained herein, pilots are reminded that the SAHPA Site Guide is based on a volunteer effort to make information freely available to the community and thus information may be out of date. Pilots are still required to use their discretion and common sense, and validate the information with each club.

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