Surf Ski and Canoe Clubs and Events in and near Fish Hoek
Come and surf ski or canoe in Fish Hoek. Paddling in False Bay and on Zandvlei are popular past times here. There are many things to do in Fish Hoek but ocean sports win first prize.
The Fish Hoek Beach Sports Club and the Peninsula Canoe Club assist new and experienced paddlers with training and events, competitions and development.
Seaside Cottages hosts many keen kayakers and canoeists who want to catch a wave at Fish Hoek Beach. Some of these paddlers train on diverse waters such as lakes, dams, wetlands and rivers.
Surf skiing is a big deal in Cape Town. As an ocean sport, sea kayaking is hot in False Bay and involves paddling on a flat ocean or taking waves into the shore. There are many things to do in Fish Hoek but this sport is tops!
A sea kayak or touring kayak is a specific kayak created for paddling on open waters of lakes, bays, and the ocean. Sea kayaks are small seaworthy boats with a covered deck and a spray deck. They are very different from white-water kayaks which are built to be manoeuvred on high rough rivers and ocean waves. Sea kayaks are made for faster paddling speeds, taking on more weight and supplies, and for paddling in a straight line, often for longer journeys.
It is good to know that when you come and stay in Fish Hoek and want to kayak, you can contact various organisations to find out what to do, where to do it and how to do it!
1. The provincial group, the Western Cape Canoe Union (WCCU) is very active and hosts four main events every season:
- The Freedom Paddle surf ski race: 30km raced every 27th of April, on National Freedom Day, around Robben Island
- The Berg River Marathon: 244km K1 race taking 4 days from Paarl to Velddrif, in July
- The Breede River Marathon: 78 km race from Robertson to Swellendam, in September
- The Cape Point Challenge: 50km race from Witsands near Misty Cliffs on the Atlantic Coast, around the dramatic Cape Point and ending at Fish Hoek beach.
2. The WCCU also leads up to these main events with smaller 1-day and 2-day races on sections of large river races that will be raced later on:
- Sections of the Berg and Breede Rivers (1 day each): 20 to 40 km long.
- A section of the Olifants River in the Citsudal region of the Cape (2 days).
- Sections of the Eerste River in Stellenbosch and Diep River in Stanford (1 day each).
3. Sprint Championships:
- April: before any river racing, for all categories of paddlers in their different age groups and for K1 and K2 canoes
- April: the SA Schools Canoe Sprint Championships in Kwazulu-Natal or in Gauteng – the WCCU team performs remarkably well.
- May: before Canoe Marathon Championships, for all categories of paddlers in their different age groups and for K1 and K2 canoes
4. Summer months:
- Junior paddlers and flat water (sprint) regattas are organized around the province for paddlers 18 years and younger. They compete over the usual sprint distances of 200m, 500m and 1000m, and a Junior Marathon longer event of 3000m to introduce them to the longer events.
- A lively series of surf ski paddling races is held at various venues in False Bay, Table Bay and the open seas off the Peninsula.
- A development program that takes the sport of canoeing to disadvantaged paddlers, many juniors who then do very well.
This awesome group of keen paddlers is based at Zandvlei Sports Club in Muizenberg near Marina da Gama. Fish Hoek residents can join and visitors can go along to watch the training or events if they know paddlers in the mix.
Canoeing on still waters is a fun, fit, fab exercise for all ages.
It may be very different from sea kayaking but it is also equally challenging and rewarding. Paddling can take place on lakes, dams, lagoons and wetlands, rivers and the sea. Once you have had your first few lessons, you will be sold for good!
Paddlers can compete in the 240km Berg River Canoe Marathon or do the down sea run from Cape Point to Fish Hoek Beach.
The club offers a three-month trial package for new paddlers who want to test the waters and they meet coaches and team members. Every Tuesday, paddlers can enter the time trials and even try a bit of canoe polo! The club offers friendship, camaraderie, training and development - and fun for all new members.
Read the Peninsula Canoe Club FAQ here.