Everything you need to know about paddling from Oceana but did not know who to ask

It is pretty straight forward to paddle from Oceana. We are not a public beach so you cannot just rock up and paddle. As a controlled public slipway we are subject to a few basic rules. Here is what you have to do…..

1. Be Competent in a surfski

If you are a beginner then this is not the place to paddle from. While the launch is super straight forward, there are no safe and easy landing spots along the coast line if you get into trouble. Fish Hoek or Hout Bay are great places to master the basics.

If you can stay in your ski and re mount easily then you will love paddling from Oceana.

2. Have the correct safety kit - non negotiable

Surfski paddlers in South Africa are subject to SAMSA regulations. We work closely with our club’s safety officer. His regulations are there to make sure we get to come home to our families after each paddle.

Here is what you need to do.

  1. Wear a PDF that floats you easily but still allows to ease of movement. We recommend the Mocke PFD.
  2. Have a leash that connects you to the boat. If your boat is blown out of your reach, swimming home in icy waters could have a dire outcome.
  3. Carry a cell phone in waterproof bag that allows for its effective use in wet conditions.
  4. Have the NSRI number – 082 990 5962 on speed dial.
  5. If your phone allows, use the SafeTrx tracking app. That way the NSRI can track you and find you if needed.
  6. Carry 6 pencil flares or 2 hand held flares

3. Pay up

Simple enough. Join the club or pay R20 slip launching fees.

4. Know the terrain

  1. Before you head out, know what the weather is up to. A strong South East wind can be misleading at Oceana. It can appear very calm but if you head more than a few 100m off shore you can get caught in a powerful offshore wind. Here is a great link for a live web cam and a weather forecast for the Oceana paddling waters.
  2. There are 2 points that can occasionally have breaking surf.
    1. Thermo’s – as you leave Oceana and head around towards Green Point you will see a wreck sticking out of the kelp on your left. This is normally calm but can break in big swells. Stay well outside of the kelp beds and you will be fine.
    2. Further on you will see Green Point Light house. That almost always has breaking surf. Pay attention and give the point a wide berth.
  3. Just past Green Point light is a rock reef that sticks out. Keep a look out as it has claimed many a ski over the years.
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