SUNSET over summer in South Africa -- winter's fury arrived early bringing with it the cleanest day in recent memory. I surfed from sun up to sun down.
Cape Town has had great surf this summer. The beachbreaks have been consistent and there was a good swell over the New Year. But when last week's swells showed up on the charts it could have been the middle of winter. The first swell came from a massive low pressure storm far down south which sent a beautiful large long period south westerly swell towards South Africa. The second swell came all the way from South America, the low pressure storm was a lot smaller than the first one but the swell was more west which is better for both Dungeons and Sunset. They should both be working with no wind -- perfect.
Early on Thursday the 1st of March, myself, Alan van Gysen, Twiggy and Andrew "Roosta" Lange met at the slipway in Hout Bay Harbour, just around the corner from Dungeons. The buoys were showing 4 metres (14ft) at 14 seconds so we knew it was not going to be as big as some of the forecasts were promising. Like a lot of big wave surfers I look at lots of charts and often we want to believe the largest. Sadly magicseaweed for got it right on the button at 4 metres.
When we got out to Dungeons the waves were a bit inconsistent but the Slab, an intense shallow barrel to the right of Dungeons, was going off. Twiggy and Roosta towed each other into some crazy barrels before we had another look at Dungeons. The waves were still very inconsistent and I was amping to paddle into some proper waves again so we left Twig and Roosta at Dungeons and went across to Sunset, another big wave spot about 5miles south of Dungeons. Sunset is a perfect A-frame peak which is a lot more user friendly than Dungeons when the swell isn't massive. It is perfectly situated in front of Kommetjie a small town home to most of the area's big wave crew.
As we arrived we saw a perfect 15ft set, not a drop of water out of place. I got my 10'2 DVG ready and left Alan on the ski to shoot pictures. All the usual guys were out: Mickey Duffus, Simon Lowe, Mike Schlebach, Dave Smith, Jake Kolnik and a whole bunch of other locals including a new, younger crew.
Matt Bromley arrived back from Hawaii just in time for the swell and got an epic barrel on the inside section - not easy on a 9'6 board. Simon had some epic late drops on his 10'6 and was surfing amazingly well for a guy that just had a knee operation a few days before! Dave had one insane late drop on his 9'0, taking off under the lip.
The waves remained perfect the whole day with a lot of the guys having two long sessions. I had one of the best days that I can remember and surfed for 10 hours. As the sun dropped low in the sky I dropped Alan off on the beach in Kommetjie and rode back to Hout Bay by myself on the ski, sneaking one final look at Dungeons before making it back to the harbour at 6pm. The waves had been closer to 15ft rather than the 20 plus we live for, but hell after 12 hours of perfect 15 footers all the guys were stoked! Lets hope that this is the start to an epic winter of waves.