Posted by: catamarantwooceans | January 3, 2014

Sailing from Knysna to Cape Town

1.1.14 – Wednesday – A beautiful day greeted me as I woke up. The first reasonable exit near high water was at 1600, too late for us. I thought that with the light winds forecasted we could leave at slack low water, which was at 0945 and the club people confirmed it. "Approach the Heads and if you see waves breaking in the pass, wait an hour and check again".  Before that I took the dinghy ashore to dispose of our rubbish. Checking the water tap I found out that the municipality fixed whatever went wrong and that we could get good water.

From our anchorage we had to make a detour around a shoal in order to get to the club’s dock. Having no large scale chart we motored between anchored yachts but even that did not spare us from running aground. Tide was running out and we stood the chance of being stuck until it turned. Working the engines in high power extracted us from our embarrassment; we filled our tanks and slowly motored in the channel towards the exit.

At 0945, with Dany looking back at the transit lights, warning of any deviation from the required course and Menachem clicking away on his Canon EOS D-7, we exited the pass and took up a course of 253 to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost tip of Africa.

A few hours of motoring, then some pure sailing. A small sea bird hitched a ride on the port pulpit, rested a bit and flew away.

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Progress was good; it occurred to me that technically we could reach Cape Town on Friday, before the weather turned nasty. Everybody told us not to come there before the Cape to Rio race leaves on Saturday as the Royal Cape Yacht Club, in which we planned to stay would be full and overflowing. I called them on the phone and a man said:"Yes, you can come, there is a place fore you". Just to make sure I also sent an e mail with the boat’s measurements. Let’s see how they react. As the sun went down the wind went forward and decreased; back to engine work.

2.1.14 – Thursday – Just before my 0200 watch, the wind became SSE at 12 knots. Dany shut the engine and we sailed along at close to 7 knots. Good conditions continued throughout the day; at 1230 we passed abeam Cape Agulhas, longitude 20 degrees east, which is the line separating the Indian and the Atlantic oceans.

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                            Cape Agulhas lighthouse

I was still worried about the marina space in Cape Town; I called Tony and asked him to call them for me. In the afternoon the phone rang; Neville Norton called to confirm there was a berth for us. Great! Thanks Tony!

Now here’s a Fish Story: When Menachem came on board, he told us about his misfortune with fishing from his yacht. "My partner says I bring bad luck. He says it’s because of my aftershave" (the man has a beard). We told him confidently that on Two Oceans he will surely experience the thrill of fish being caught. The days rolled by, we covered long distances, trolling whenever the conditions were suitable and no fish was taken! We did have two strikes but the fish got away. Today, less than a hundred miles from Cape Town and the end of the trip for Menachem, just as he was writing a message to his son, complaining about the no fish situation – the reel sang.

Dany put a lot of effort in rolling the line in. I stood by him with the gaff, ready to lift the big one on board.

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As it drew nearer and nearer I was speculating about the species: "It’s probably a wahoo, it does not dive or fight too much". a brown shape revealed itself. This is what we hooked – KELP.

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Don’t worry, Menachem, we have 93 miles to go; there is still a chance!

We kept on sailing; beautiful weather, good wind and a 1 knot current pushing us along.

3.1.14 – Friday – We passed the Cape of Good Hope in the dark. At 0430 I relieved Dany from his watch. As the day dawned I could see the coastline, draped by shallow fog. Close to the harbour it dispersed and shapes of ships at anchor appeared. We entered with the Table Mountain at the background.

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We motored slowly all around the marina to find B26/27; we finally did and tied "Two Oceans" to the floating dock.

Looking back at this leg – Richards Bay to Cape Town – it was a fantastic one. No storms or major difficulties (apart from the gas leak), nice land tours and it was fast!

Our ladies will join us in eight days for some more tours in the Western Cape. After that, Dany and I will go on for the big one’ planning to reach the Caribbeans at the beginning of April.

P.S – Even though I kept on trolling until the port, no fish was taken, while all around us dolphins and birds were hunting. Is there really something in the aftershave Menachem uses?

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Responses

  1. i did not use this day my aftershave (Code by Armani) during the whole sail, so its not the aftershave! So what is it??

    Menachem


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