INTRO - They say that you can find wind every single day in and around the Cape Town area... if you're willing to drive. UK riders Lee 'Pasty' Harvey and Danny Morrice found it to be true with a cracking and unexpected session at Witsands in January
PHOTOS | Pierre Jansen
Lee ‘Pasty’ Harvey
Pasty is running clinics in Dakhla on various dates in March - Visit the website below to book your space:
This year I decided to escape from Cornwall and come to Cape Town for seven weeks. This is my fourth time here after doing three whole seasons back in the early 2000s the last being in 2004. Since then many things have changed, Big Bay is now a shopping and eating hub, numbers on the water have increased and back then I used to windsurf when it was wavey and ride the Twin Tip when it was flat. One thing that has stayed the same is my love of surfing and my need to hunt for waves outside of the Table View area when the winds are light.
On this day we drove down to the Cape Point area with the goal being to surf and find some nice barrels as the forecast was for only 5-6 knots of wind. As we came over the hill at Witsands we could see a slight ruffle on the water in a cross-off direction. Waiting for ten minutes the sun broke through the clouds and pretty quickly the wind picked up to around 15 knots, although very gusty and patchy. The great thing about kitesurfing for me is that I use the same boards to kite as I surf and I never go anywhere without my North Rebel 8m even if there is meant to be no wind, so whatever mother nature decides to do, I have the right tools for the job!
With some well overhead sets and the odd barrel we soon rigged up on the beach while our local friend, Pierre set up his cameras on the cliff above. Danny and I then had the whole line up to ourselves for two hours in the most amazingly blue water and glassy waves, with just a few surfers tucked up in the corner looking at us in amazement wishing they had a kit.
One of those magical days - that is the reason why I love our sport so much!
Thanks to Pierre Jansen for driving us down and taking pics and my sponsors for giving me the best kit to ride waves- North Kiteboarding, O’Neill wetsuits, Inlayz, JP Surfboards.
This is my first time in Cape Town and I already know I'll be back here. One thing that amazes me about the conditions here is that they seem to vary so much at every beach that you visit. You may have 30mph of wind on one beach and only a few miles down the coast it’ll be blowing 20. This makes hunting for sessions really interesting, trying to find the best conditions to ride that day can often be challenging.
This one session was at Witsands, with no wind where we were staying in Big Bay, in the northwesterly, we decided to drive and hunt for some better conditions. When we arrived the wind was fairly light on the inside but soon picked up, and was perfect for my 9m RRD Religion and 5’9 RRD Maquina. The swell was peeling nicely and we got on it quickly and had the whole spot to ourselves. It took some time to suss the spot as it was my first time kiting here, but after a while I worked it out, finding the better peaks and eventually getting a few head dips in the barrels.
The spot was a really good set up for photos with the cliff above making a great spot for Pierre to shoot from, and the perfectly turquoise water it was a little different to kiting in the UK.
Thanks to my sponsors RRD for providing me with kit that I can trust and ride in all conditions! Also thanks to Pierre for the shots and Pasty for leading the way and sussing out the best spots.