1 July, 2010 1 July, 2010

Silverstroom – Western Cape spot check

Sean Holmes nestling into Gas Chambers.

If you’re heading back to Cape Town from Ysterfontein, you’ll come across a turn off to the right called Silverstroom. Silverstroom was a secret to the Melkbos crew for a long time before word started filtering out of this somewhat magical spot that always had good sandbanks. Overtime, as word got out of its cylindrical barerls it became more and more populated. But now the crows are all gone, thanks to a boogieboarding contest that was held there. They left a pile of shit behind and the farmer who owns the chunk of land simply closed the gate to the access road and threw away the key.

Today the only way to get to the best waves in the area is to hike there. It’s quite a long one along the gravel road until you come to the first big turn to the right. Follow this path down to the power station. You will see some amazing waves from here all the way down.

Gas Chambers, the diamond of Silverstroom:
The far end of the beach is Gas Chambers. It likes a light southeast to northeast wind and loves the low tide. It is extremely fickle and the bank can disappear for months and months and months. Because it’s a long walk down and the beach bends away you can’t actually see what the wave is doing until you get right down there. But it is due to this bend that the corner is still good when the south easter side shore blows.

Other waves in the area:
Back in front of the power station there is often a peak, as well as another right. These waves get really good at low tide. There is also a reef on the right hand side. Some people call it Limpet Land, we call it quite shit.

The main beach at Silverstroom has a massive Pavilion. This is usually completely empty. If you park at the Pavilion you might be able to see a wave breaking in the corner. It bends and refracts off an outside reef and sometimes you get a peeling right-hander here, and sometimes a left that runs down the beach. The rest of the main beach develops some really good banks. On a small swell and a northeast wind or a light southeast wind, this beach can get excellent waves with barrels. It works with a variety of tidal conditions, dependent on the banks, and sometimes at the very far corner, under the rocks, another left appears into a rip. This is even more rare than the other waves. There is a fairly consistent right that breaks about three quarters of the way down, and also can throw a few barrels. Generally you wont be disappointed and you will find a lekker wave to surf.

Silverstroom is a mission. The water is teaming with fish of all shapes and sizes, and sometimes feels quite spooky. Sharks and whales have often been spotted. There are cows on the beaches that shit everywhere and swarm of horse flies cruise around looking for people to eat alive. You have to pay to get in, so even if you don’t find waves you’ve paid for nothing. The parking and access is a mission, and it is fairly remote. If something goes wrong it will be a long haul to get to medical facilities. Sometimes if you go and park down in the bottom caravan park/camp site you get plenty drunk people around. Even during the day, in the morning.

The thing is, if you score you really score, and there will be no one around but you and the crew you brought in.


Fast facts:
Best wave in the hood: Gas Chambers


Best time of the year: Winter, small swell, pre-frontal berg wind conditions.


Chances of scoring: pretty darn slim. A massive effort to get there as well.


What to expect when it is good: Stand up right tubes. Hundreds of them!


  1. sean
    14 April, 2013 at 5:58 pm · Reply

    the only trash any bodyboarder leaves behind is the kak surfer mentality.

  2. Mr BrownName (required)
    26 January, 2019 at 3:18 pm · Reply

    🏏. I can’t find the crickets emoticon.

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