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26 February 2018

 John has a holiday home at Scarborough. This was our base for a short trip in November 2017. The house is located right next to the Cape Point Nature Reserve fence. The fence in the picture below features later in this Blog.

Tuesday 7 November 2017 produced a howling South-easter gusting up to 80 km/hr. On approaching Cape Point this was our first view of the “lighthouse”.
There are actually two lighthouses at Cape Point. The original (above) is now an observation post. It was built at a very elevated position which permitted mist and cloud to defeat its purpose. It was decommissioned when a second lighthouse was built closer to sea level. Further detail is contained in a plaque set into the wall of an adjacent building.
We met two lighthouse maintenance staff, who were to escort us, at the base of the funicular. This enabled us to drive up to the original lighthouse in their vehicle and enter the structure. 
The external balcony could also be accessed to experience the wind. The relatively horizontal portion of the pathway to the newer lighthouse is visible and also the view Northward to Smitswinkel Bay / Cape Town. 
The lighthouse maintenance staff advised against descending to the newer lighthouse, as the descent route followed a very steep unprotected path and stairway. In fact, they delay their maintenance visits in the event of wind such as we were experiencing. So the newer lighthouse at Cape Point remains unticked for now.
Later in the afternoon we checked the conditions for a boat trip to Roman Rock. Clearly no small vessels were putting to sea as shown by the swell breaking at its base.
At 04h00 the next morning John woke me to say there was some ACTION. A fire was sweeping through the Nature Reserve directly toward us.  Note the fence referred to earlier. The volunteer firefighters were doing outstanding work to protect the suburb.




That was a close call. John says the entertainment was on the house !
2 Jan 18