For several weeks we have all been wondered what’s happened to the Great White Sharks. Our guests love going cage diving at Gansbaai, and as Hermanus is only 40 minutes from where the action is, we are used to booking many trips for our guests. Its great to hear their stories when they return, and a bigger when they forward me their photos and tell me to use them for social media. However, the past month or so has seen not only a decline in sharks – but they seem to have just disappeared! Now the mystery has been revealed. ORCA’s!! Yep Killer whales in our ocean have scared them away. Earlier this month a 4.9 female shark was washed up (dead) and her liver completely eaten away! Marine biologist, Allison Towner says this is the fifth white shark carcass and the largest to wash up in Gansbaai since 2012. Lets hope there wont be too many more – although I guess Orca’s need to eat too!Did you know that although called “Whales” the Orca is actually a member of the “Dolphin”family!”Funny thing was… our guests were on one of the first “non shark sighting” trips a month or so ago… They were gutted that they “only saw an ORCA”! Wow – I don’t think they know just how fortunate they were! Why are the Orca’s here anyway – I do’nt think they usually are?? Don’t they live nearer to USA and Canada mainly? I guess everyone needs a holiday! haha.
How exciting for Hermanus to host the Absa Cape Epic this year. A cycling race that lasts 8 days and covers around 700 kilometres, with an accumulative vertical gain of 15 400m. Cyclists from all over the world spilled into our town, camping in the high school and filling our guest houses, hotels and restaurants. The Potting Shed accommodated both event organizers and riders. Listening to stories of preparation and training was just something else. The time and dedication for months that goes into this is just mind blowing. Wow these men and ladies are really something else. Full of dedication and endurance!
The Epic route changes each year, but is always in the Western Cape. This year riders started in Hermanus and went through the beautiful local wine valley of Hemel en Aarde, later seeing Elgin, Grabouw, crossing the finishing line in Paarl. The atmosphere and adrenaline from the participants gave me goose bumps as I watched them at speed from various viewpoints in the Overberg. Heat was not on their side and the medical tent looked like a war zone treating injured and with cuts, broken bones and infusing glucose drips for the dehydrated.
In order to qualify for a finish you have to remain with your partner. Teamwork is essential and with a cost to enter at over R60,000 a pair you need a good, strong, healthy partner. Mathew Browne and Claude Tyers from Hermanus joined forces this year and proudly finished 90th in the Masters category (for over 40’s) and came 290th overall out of 670 entries. Well done to you guys.
Thank you Doreen for helping me. I’m full of cold and flu and didn’t feel up to making the cookies for the guests this weekend. Doreen – bless her, has never baked in her life and doesn’t enjoy cooking at home. She followed the recipe step by step, and it’s looking like the biscuits have passed the taste test.
Good to know the sharks are back in the Western Cape!
It’s a great time to visit South Africa with the Rand being more than 20 to the pound. Such great value for money. The weather is fantastic this time of year. In #Hermanus #Westerncape we’ve had temperatures of 25+ degrees for weeks. The scenery is beautiful and there is plenty of culture and activities to do.
Had a lovely visit to Heart of Abagold. I was amazed how good #Abalone tastes. Thought it would be really overrated but it was delicious. Reminded me of a #whelk from #Leigh-on-Sea #Essex #England. Perhaps not everyone’s cup of tea – but the cockle sheds were one of the first places I headed for on a recent visit back home to Old Blighty! So for me to taste something similar, but far superior I have say was quite a treat. It was much smoother than a “whelk”. At #Heartofabagold you can choose from several tours, sample the wonderful “Abalone” and browse in the shop to see the fantastic Jewellery made from this sea creatures shell!
Please watch Fokus this Sunday at 19h00 on SABC 3. Danie Hefers will broadcast his filming/programme on Abalone Poaching which was done on 5 and 6 November in Overstrand. He also filmed some of the training OnVerWag (and others) did with Afriforum.
I’m looking forward to finding out more about Abalone tonight at the launch of “Heart of Abagold” at the New Harbour. Will keep you posted – it sounds like a very exciting, informative place with tours and tastings.