Last night seemed a nightmare for all those living in Tokai, Clovelly, Kalk Bay and Noordhoek. It appears that smouldering embers erupted into dangerous flames that turned into a raging inferno. The entire False Bay valley was beneath a pall of smoke and ash, descending on homes in fine showers of dust. The call went out for helpers to congregate at the DRC campsite just opposite the entrance to Noordhoek Farm Village. I joined a stream of cars in getting there to see if I could help in any way. There were loads of volunteers all waiting around for further instructions…
The bottom line was that they were only taking people officially volunteering with animal organisations, so we checked out the kitchen and first aid station and asked if they needed help. When they didn’t we decided to go for a walk…a 5km walk around Noordhoek… (I only turned the app on at the green dot, although we walked from the red one)
Our walk took us past the house that was razed last night…it was in the middle of a number of thatched houses, but hot ash or embers must have set it on fire…you can see on the left in the distance where the flames were…
They had been on duty since midnight and were pretty shattered. We thanked them profusely for their hard work and walked on up to Monkey Valley. This morning, news had it that Monkey Valley had been burnt down. No one stopped us as we walked through the pretty deserted resort. We walked right up to the top where we had a chat with a volunteer called Craig. There were firemen sleeping in one of the chalets. Craig told us as far as he knew there was no damage done to Monkey Valley. We walked up some steps, scaled a fence (I promise! We were quite macho!) and scrambled up onto Chapman’s Peak drive where we took a photo to show that Monkey Valley resort looks intact…
We passed several fire trucks and volunteers, stomping out smoking embers and shovelling sand over them. Fire engines kept an eye on the mountainside in case there should be another flare-up. Most of the fynbos has been burnt – the fire appears to be out. Lovely showers of rain assisted in damping the ground.
I’m hearing that while Noordhoek seems under control, the fire is still raging in the Tokai and Constantia areas with parts of Groot Constantia wine estate on fire. There are reports of several houses having been razed, like this one in Steenberg Estate…
This is the worst fire that I’ve ever seen in Cape Town. We will always remember the fires of March 2015, as we remember the fires of January 2000 and March 1998. The 1998 fires were mainly to the north of the city.
We hope that they have got everything under control and that the rain will fall and the wind won’t rise. It looks pretty overcast right now. After walking along Chapman’s Peak Drive, I’m pretty convinced this weekend’s cycle tour won’t be able to use the road. We’ll wait and see what happens.
Mark 13 vs 13
“…he who stands firm to the end will be saved.”
Regardless of what is going on, just keep on going. Stand firm, keep believing, keep trusting, keep rejoicing.
God is with you on this journey. You are not alone.
Keep your eyes on the goal.
And keep the smile going.
God bless you!
In His Grip,