Local information about flying Powered Paragliders in Cape Town, South Africa.

Visiting pilots please contact us before flying in the area, as there are many sensitive areas where PPG is not allowed.
Let us show you where the best launch sites are, and the best routes to fly.
Contact: Keith Pickersgill, Mobile 082 414-8448, Email: keith@xplorer.co.za

Please familiarise yourself with the local airspace around Cape Town here: https://skyvector.com
If you intend to fly inside controlled airspace, please make the appropriate arrangements by radio or telephone BEFORE entering!
Ensure you do not accidentally stray into restricted airspace such as over the Waterfront, Koeberg Nuclear Power Station, Simonstown Naval Base, Cape Point Reserve, etc.
Also be aware of the prohibited airspace around Langebaan, just South of Voelvlei, just West of Strand Beach, etc.

Durbanville & Fisantekraal area, special procedures

New Delta200 (FAD200) Airspace effective 12 February 2009.Click HERE for details and map

New FAD69 Airspace effective 26 August 2010. Click HERE for details and map

Before flying anywhere between Mossel Bay and Knysna on the Garden Route, you must sign a Declaration that you have read and understand the Rules.
Download the ZIP file HERE

See our collection of WEBCAMS of local flying locations

Click for Latest Synoptic Chart

Local Weather info:

Section: A. LIVE Realtime Reports

Milnerton Aquatic Club (MAC)
  • Weather Underground has an excellent map showing the overall region's weather here

  • WindyTy shows the actual airflow over the region in a zoomable map, with forcasts for the next few days.
    Click Here

  • Here is another visualisation of the wind-flow over the greater Cape Town region here

  • iweathar has several windtalkers, many are at popular paragliding sites.
    See: www.iweather.co.za

    An overview map of the weather is at: http://www.iweathar.co.za/google_maps.php

    From your mobile phone, go to go.iweather.co.za (Click to preview on your PC)

  • www.windalert.com is a superb local service. They have mobile apps for smartphones too.

  • Listen to the Cape Town International ATIS on radio frequency 127.0MHz. (Make sure your radio is set to Transmit Inhibit on that channel, i.e. Never transmit on that frequency)

  • If you are out of radio range of ATIS, you can listen to the same recording on the phone number 021 937-1179

Section: B. Weather Forecasts

  1. Forecast from:
    Weather in Cape Town

  2. Windfinder also has accurate wind forecasts for some of our popular flying locations:

  3. Windguru offers very accurate wind forecasts:

Our local PPG Training field at Dolphin Beach

Map to the training field

Photo of the general location

Close-up of the field

Google Streetview:

View Larger version on new page

Google Map at: https://goo.gl/maps/Fk3owE8JDpkUMUVa9

Google Earth Placemark available here
Get Google Earth from: earth.google.com

PPG Training Details here

Dolphin Beach and Table Bay in general

Location: Dolphin Beach PPG take-off field is at the intersection of Marine Drive (M14) and Visagie Street in Table View, between the Dolphin Beach Hotel and Marine Circle. .
Co-ords are: S33 49.553 E18 28.742

It is a narrow grass strip sandwiched between the coastal dunes and the road (M14), running parallel to the coastline in an approximate NW/SE direction.

There is usually a windsock on the seaward side of the field.

Best weather for flying from here are onshore winds from North-West, through West to South-West, however it can also be flown in a light Northerly and sometimes a very light Southerly. Fresh Southerlies and almost any South-Easter are usually too turbulent. Early morning Catabatic offshore winds will generate rotor off the nearby buildings. Pre-frontal NW winds are the ideal direction but can be strong and gusty, whereas post-frontal SW is usually very smooth flying conditions here.

Limitations at Dolphin Beach takeoff area:
Approximately in the center of this grass strip is a small ablution block. No launching on the South-Eastern lawns between the ablution block and the Dolphin Beach hotel.

Near the North-West corner, alongside the Blouberg Tourism Office, is a childrens' playground consisting of four swings and a Jungle-Jim with a slide.

Along the rear of the field (against the road side), is a low wooden rail, approx knee-height. Where this rail forms a cut-out around three park benches, the South Eastern edge of this cutout marks a boundary extended across the field towards the sea, beyond which no paramotor may cross on the ground. Takeoff runs must be aborted BEFORE crossing this line, to keep paramotors away from the playground. This applies at all times, including when there are no children in the playground at the time.

Avoid flying low over the playground. On landing approach from this direction, this may require either a steep descent, or cut across the field after you have passed the playground.

Absolutely no flying to the landward side of the rear rail (i.e. over the road), even on landing approach. This may require a cross-wind approach, turning into wind at the last moment.

Along the seaward edge is a wooden rail approximately shoulder height that must be cleared after takeoff. If you are not sure that you will clear this rail, abort and start again. There are also tall lamposts along the seaward edge of the field. When the wind is light but straight onshore, then it is usually better to launch approximately 45 degrees from the wind to give you a longer take-off run and more space to climb clear of the rail and lamp-posts.

Airspace and radio frequencies:
Most of Table Bay including the takeoff area falls within the Cape Town Special Rules North region, operating on 126.8MHz. The ceiling in this area is 2000ft ASL, due to the Cape Town TMA being above. Cape Town's CTR is just behind (East of) the field.

Coastline to the South:
Approx 3km along the coastline to the South East is the start of the Ysterplaat Air Force Base CTR, from Ground to 1500ft ASL operating on 125.6MHz. Be sure to call “Ysteplaat Tower” at least Ten minutes before entering their airspace.

If crossing Table Bay (to reach Camps Bay and beyond), remain at least 1000ft ASL over the Waterfront and keep a sharp visual and radio watch (125.8MHz) for tourist helicopters operating from the Breakwater Base. Observe the ceiling of 2000ft ASL while crossing the bay.

The entire Atlantic seaboard of the Peninsula is in the FACT SRA WEST on 125.8MHz.

Coastline to the North:
Koeberg Nuclear Power Station's Restricted Airspace (FAR36) extends from the ground to the base of the TMA at 2000ft (so you can NOT fly over this area). The Southern tip, though officially the slipway in Melkbosstrand, in practice is treated as the Kleine Zout Rivier mouth near Vanriebeekstrand (in front of Ou Skip Caravan Park). This allows some limited paramotor launches from the beach at the river mouth, which is a subject of a separate set of guidelines to be published.

To the South there are very limited opportunities to route inland. Routing through Ysterplaat's CTR offers access to a narrow corridor alongside Devils Peak, remaining West of the Cape Town CTR. Further along the coast, the mountains of the Peninsula are a formidable barrier, so most flights from Dolphin beach follow the Western seaboard.

To the North, there is a corridor between Doodles Restaurant on the beach and Blouberg Heights (the solitary tall block in Bloubergstrand peoper), though maintain a respectful altitude when crossing over and beware turbulence off Blouberg Heights.

Between Big Bay and Melkosstrand is mostly Rural area, however be aware that the Huey tourist helicopters operate low level in this area.

Inside the Delta200 (FAD200), operate on 124.4MHz. This stretches from the M19 in the South, Northwards between the R27 West Coast Road to the West and the Kalbaskraal Road to the East, under the TMA with a celining of 2000ft ASL. Northward, past the Delta200 airfield, the ceiling increases to 4000ft ASL.

Morningstar Airfield, a popular destination (especially on Saturdays for Breakfast), is just South of the Delta200 and on the Eastern side of the N7, operating on 126.8MHz.

Further East (and slightly Northward) is the new FAD69 on 124.2MHz. For charts and details, see: http://xplorer.co.za/local/fad69

Nearby contacts:
Tableview Police Station 021 521-3300
Blouberg Netcare Hospital 021 554-9000
Milnerton Medi-Clinic 21 529-9299

The Cape Powered Paragliders Club (CPPG) is responsible for managing the local PPG flying sites and ensuring the safety of the pilots and the public. The Safety Committee also operate as a Disciplinary Committee who are empowered to take action against pilots who break the rules.

    CPPG imposed minimum flying altitudes:
  • The coastline along Woodbridge Island has a club imposed minimum separation from the houses of 500ft vertically, or 500ft horizontally over the water. The residents are aware of this and are likely to complain whenever this rule is broken, especially on weekends and in the evenings when most of them are at home.
  • The Big Bay retail commercial development also has a 500 foot separation rule whenever it is safe to do so. Weekends and evenings are especially sensitive due to the number of people frequenting the eateries. Please remember to commence your climb early enough (especially when a tailwind is present) to pass by these two sensitive sites with sufficient altitude.
  • Melkbosstrand has also become sensitive to paramotor noise recently, so we need to treat this area with increased respect as well, including a 500ft separation rule to be applied whenever safe to do so. Note also, the river-mouth there marks the start of Koeberg's restricted airspace.
    NB: Do not climb at full power with the intention of arriving overhead at 500ft. You need to level-out at or above 500ft BEFORE arriving overhead the sensitive areas.
    Note:These rules will not be policed as such by the club, however complaints from the general public will be responded to in an appropriate manner to protect the privileges we currently enjoy flying along this beautiful coastline.

Radio Frequencies in use
For Powered Paragliding around Cape Town
1124.800Local (TIBA)
2126.800CT SP.Rules North
3130.350PPG Chat (Informal)
5125.800 CT Sp.Rules West
6125.600 YPT AFB Tower
7124.200FAD 69 !NEW!
8131.10 Fisantekraal a/f
9119.300 Stellenbosch a/f
10118.900 George Tower
11124.200George SR-West
12122.500LW APPR (FAR45)
13133.500 LW INFO
14127.000CT ATIS
15125.100 CT Area
16131.125CT Info (updated)
17121.900CT Ground
18118.100CT Tower
19120.050 CT Approach (updated)
20119.800Overberg Tower

Airband radio usage.

When using official airband channels in flight, we need to keep our communications brief yet clear, using acceptable terminology (Brevity & Clarity), especially in high traffic areas such as Table Bay.

We all get rusty over time, so it helps to "listen in" occassionally to remind ourselves how things are done correctly.

A few important pointers to remember:

Some terms are difficult to make out or interpret over airband which operates on AM not FM, so the reception is not as crisp nor clear.

We need to avoid using such terms and use the correctly recognised terms instead. (this is also good practice on the FM paragliding channels)

Use the term "motorised paraglider" on the radio and NOT "powered paraglider"

Yes, and No, become "Affirm" and "Negative".
Never use the term "Positive", nor "Affirmative" for a yes. For yes, use the simple, "Affirm".

To acknowledge that you heard and understand an instruction or call, use, "Copy that" and not, "Affirm".

Use "Say Again", and not "repeat".

When flying in a group or a loose formation, only one person need do general radio calls for the group. The callsign "paraglider formation" may then be used for general calls, and to inform the group of intentions flight, e.g. "Paraglider formation, we shall turn 180 degrees to the right over the carpark".

If there are student pilots in the group, then it may be prudent to use the PPG Chat frequency (130.350MHz) for informal radio contact, however someone must still make regular broadcast calls on the official local channels and then inform the group on the chat channel about possible traffic in the area.

All PPG and PHG pilots flying around Cape Town should have the frequencies listed on the Left programmed into their airband radio.

Its useful to program these into your radio, and scan these while at the desk or while driving, to "learn the lingo" and keep your ear tuned into the "patter" of airtalk.

NOTE: The ATIS channels (Air Terminal Info Service) gives almost realtime update on changing weather conditions. Each time it is updated, the recording is assigned the next letter of the alphabet (e.g. "Information Delta" follows after "Information Charlie"). The key elements worth noting for PPG is wind strength and direction, QNH, visibility, and cloud cover. Make absolutely sure you do NOT accidentally transmit on these channels. It is safest to program these channels as "Transmit Inhibit" to prevent accidental transmissions.

Reminder of certain mandatory requirements for PPG which must be adhered to:

  • It is a mandatory requirement in South Africa to fly PPG with airband radio (and be licensed to use it in SA) and to operate on the correct frequencies, unless you can meet all of the following requirements to fly without airband radio:
    1. No higher than 1000 feet AGL throughout the entire flight
    2. Not approach within 5 Nautical Miles of any airspace, including GFA (General Flying Areas)
    3. Not fly under any TMA (Terminal Movements Area)
    4. Not approach within 5 Nautical Miles of any active airfield, including uncontrolled airfields.
      (Small, private airfields with very little activity are excluded, provided you make arrangements with the owners beforehand and advise them you have no airband radio).
    5. Not approach within 5 nautical miles of any established VFR routes, including the entire coastline of SA.

      Breach of any one (or more) of these requirements during any part of a flight requires airband radio operations for that flight.

    As you can see from the above, it is often impossible to comply with all these requirements, so airband radio becomes quite necessary on almost all flights.

    This implies that all PPG pilots must have their airband radio license, own an airband radio and must be on the CORRECT FREQUENCIES at all times throughout each flight.

    • PPG student under training may be on a chat channel provided the instructor monitors the local frequency, or the above requirements can be met.
    • Formation flying, formation leader to carry out radio calls on behalf of the formation, but there must be a second and third backup radio pilot in case of leader's radio failure.
    • during a formation flight, if the formation wishes to go to a chat channel to discuss changes in flightplan, conditions, etc, the entire formation to descend to the minum safe altitude (definately below 1000ftAGL) before changing to chat channel. (obviously cannot be done inside controlled airspace.) Revert back to local frequencies as soon as possible.

  • It is a mandatory requirement that every pilot have in his possession the latest local Aeronautical Charts of the highest detail level available for his local flying areas. This is required to determine correct radio frequencies as well local airspace (controlled, prohibited, restricted, dangerous, Special Rules Areas, etc).

    For Cape Town, this is the VFR AERONAUTICAL CHART OF THE SOUTH WESTERN CAPE region (scale 1:250 000).
    Do not even think of flying anywhere in Cape Town if you do not have one of these charts in your possesion!

    This chart can be purchased from the government department of Surveys and Mapping in Mowbray. See: www.ngi.gov.za/. Telephone Numner is 021 658-4300.
    A small picture of the entire chart can be seen here
    A closer view of Table Bay region can be downloaded here (1126x1024 pixels -285kb) (Note: Right-click, then select "SAVE AS")
    A larger version (for broadband users) of the Table Bay region can be downloaded here (3307x2536 pixels -2.4MB) (Note: Right-click, then select "SAVE AS")

    If this is not carried in flight, it should at least be in the pilot's car in order to review before each flight. When travelling and visiting other regions, it is imperative the pilot familiarises himself with the airspace in that region. If he does not purchase a map for that region, he must find a local pilot for a briefing and a viewing of the local pilot's charts.

    Its worth getting one in plain paper (to carry inflight) and one laminated as a wall-chart to work on with overhead projector pens. They have branches for cash sales in: Mowbray- Cape Town, Pretoria, Bloem, PMB.

      Note the following errors on this chart:
    • Some older charts have certain radio frequencies wrong and should be as follows:
      - Cape Town Special Rules West is on 125.8MHz
      - There is no Cape Town Special Rules East, all VFR traffic Eastof the extended centerline should remain on 124.8MHz
      - FAR147, Overberg Approach, from Gaansbaai Eastwards, is on 119.8Mhz (not 199.8 as indicated). This includes circuits around unmanned airfields inside the FAR147!
      - The Southern Boundary of the FAD200 (aka Delta200) has been moved Northwards to the M19 road. See details an dupdated map at: www.xplorer.co.za/local/d200

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