The best long distance soaring & holiday centre in the world
See the world from a different angle, enjoy the thrill of flying high while drinking in the beautiful landscapes.
We have two 23m wide asphalt railways between 1100 and 1300 m in length, 2 halls, shaded areas. No sand tracks. Excellent club building, a lapa, and an excellent tow plane. Good weather advice goes without saying. Also, water pipes to the ballast refuel to the outdoor courts. A variety of small runways and suitable fields in the environment. Triangular flights over the different landscapes are the rule. The world record 1000km triangle still exists. You get to know South African pilots and thus also the country. The places Gariep has a variety of restaurants, a little further away are nice lodges and large zoos. In moderate weather, you can make excursions. Both the restaurants and the accommodations in the village are very reasonably priced. Overall, we are about 1/3 cheaper than Namibia. Also, the days are almost ½ hour longer.
Fairly early starts are possible
We have an excellent tow plane, the Morane Rallye with 235 HP
We have normally clouds and can make good use of small thundershowers in the afternoon
Flying on cloudless days is, of course, no problem with little risk of outlanding
Turbos are no problem
Maximum distance flown to date was 1.250 km
Outlanding fields and small strips are plentiful
This depends on the adventure that you book.
All participants are welcome.
Discounts are offered if you book early.
Flying high can get a little chilly. Wear comfortable clothing with closed shoes and take a jacket.
Spectators are also welcome, however, you will be sad you missed out on the fun.
Bookings are to be made in advance.
Facilities in Gariep
3 supermarkets where almost anything is available
2 shops for basic clothes
a fairly well-stocked library
Pools and sites in the lake for swimming
really good and inexpensive restaurants
inexpensive houses to rent with good kitchens and gardens
petrol 24 hours a day
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Information for pilots
Here you can download the brochure:
>>> Gariep Dam Gliding Club Procedures <<<
It explains all procedures and requirements for the flight operation.
A medical conforming to JAR-FCL3 and an FCL-SPL is required.
Prior to the fist start, we will have a detailed briefing and a check/introduction flight
Mark has brought together Gariep’s old turn-point file and Bloem’s file. All airfields are listed as xxx_AF and can also be viewed on Google Earth.
Many places, which were indicated in the old files as AF, did not exist. Mark has canceled these places, as well as all duplicates. All points are clearly visible in his Nano3. So there should be no problems in the LX devices.
Sunset times are on our notice board. These times are the official operating hours. It is up to the pilots to make use of the additional allowed 15 minutes. Note that the sun sets quickly in Africa.
No flights after nightfall and into forbidden airspace must be entered in the OLC.
Under no circumstances must the few airspaces be violated!
Gariep Dam Aviation provides any assistance and action for retrieval. The costs of the trailer will be € 250.
Membership in the SSSA (Soaring Society of South Africa):
It is a requirement that all pilots must become a member of the SSSA. A fee is € 60,- and will be issued upon arrival.
If you want to fly in South Africa, a validation of your license is required.
Very nice publications of South Africa can be found at www.southafrica.net/sat/content/en/us. In the submenu “where to go” many places are described.
In the subsection “Karoo” you find among other Graaff Reinet, which is ideal for a day trip, also the neighboring Valley of Desolation and the Camdeboo Park.
Very attractive is Kimberley with its old mining village and the huge diamonds excavation + museum.
Cross Country Flying
The first thermals usually begin in the east and we therefore first fly towards Aliwal North or Zastron. With appropriate basis then a beautiful flight in the high mountains of Lesotho is possible. You can also fly very well in the blue.
For large triangles, we go from Zastron with a light headwind to NW direction Hopetown or Postmasburg, and from there if the weather is good, over Victoria West back to Gariep. At Victoria West, you usually have a high base.
The wind increases later and brings us with 35 – 40 km / h tailwind usually a 100km long final approach. With the sun behind it is then quite cold in the cockpit.
We cross two airways, without any problem, if you ask you will always be granted release.
Outlandings are also no problem, there are many small airfields. Statistics 2012/2013: we flew on 4 of 5 days!
Every day at 9:00 clock is a mandatory briefing.
• detailed weather advisory
• Weather maps of TopMeteo, PC-Met, DWD and other aviation weather services from South Africa
• Explanation of rules
• Detect and prevent possible incidents
• Helpful recommendations of experts
• Talking about safety
Arrival and Entry
You may travel via Johannesburg or Cape Town. If you book early, the flights can be as cheap as € 600. Best is to rent a car, they can be as cheap as € 20 per day. We can fit towbars if required. Distances to Gariep are 650 km from Joburg and 900 from Capetown.
The “Autobahn” is excellent. Petrol is half the price of Europe.
You can also fly to Bloemfontein and we could collect you.
Lefthand traffic ….. one gets used to it very quickly, just remember when you drive in the early morning. But the steering wheel is on the right-hand side.
Your passport should be valid at least 30 days and of course beyond the expected date of departure. Maximum allowed is 90 days.
The pros of Gariep
• Fairly early starts are possible
• We have an excellent tow plane, the Morane Rallye with 235 HP
• We have normally clouds and can make good use of small thundershowers in the afternoon
• Flying on cloudless days is, of course, no problem with little risk of outlanding
• Turbos are no problem
• Maximum distance flown to date was 1.250 km
• Outlanding fields and small strips are plentiful