Glencairn Vlei and Beach Simonstown

Old Goose bench

To many people GEESE has become synonymous with the Glencairn wetland (vlei)  benches, so when one of the 'old' benches had its woodwork stolen it looked so broken, sad and forlorn that it became necessary to repair it.  This bench is at the top end of the vlei, the 'sports field' end, at the start of what we call 'the peninsula'.

peninsula bench

Chris Bonthuis kindly supplied the mahogany (meranti) wood which was cut and sanded into bench slats.  The concrete sides were re-positioned and concreted in place. The slats were screw-locked and we hope that no more will be stolen.  A few coats of linseed oil/turpentine made the bench look grand.

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While we were at it, we 'planted' in concrete, a Goose bench-end pointing to the start of the Typha Tunnel.  A sign will be made in due course.

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Another project we have in mind is to make more Typha Tunnel bridge units.  There are at present, two bridge units in place on the Glen Road side of the Typha Tunnel.  Each unit is made from treated timber and is about 2,5 metres long and sunk down about 1,5 metres into the mud so as to rest just above the water. The idea is to allow people to walk on a dry bridge across the vlei - the so-called Typha Tunnel.  The wetter the weather the higher the water level and we will require another four or five bridge units to keep the walk relatively dry!

We have calculated that the treated wood from the pole yard will cost about R500 per unit.

bridge unit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Welcome to G.E.E.S.E.

Thank you for visiting the GEESE website.

GEESE is the acronym for Glencairn Education & Environmental Support Enthusiasts, we are a group of people who are passionate about our vlei (valley) through which runs the River Els (Else) on its way into False Bay off the Cape Peninsula.
At times it seeps through a wetland (which was caused by man), only to form a river as it flows out into the sea, with water in it all the year round. The wetland was caused by the rail and road bridges over the Els River being built in the early 1900s on the Simon’s Town side of Glencairn Beach/Els Bay. This prevented the sea from flowing naturally and tidally up the river.

The wetland was declared a Nature Conservation Area by John Wiley, then MP for Simon’s Town, as is recorded on a rock where the Glen Road crosses the Els. There are a number of paths round the wetland, some being used by workers going to and from work, and all of them by walkers, many with their dogs.

We have two pans with different characteristics: the top one is the home of Moorhens who have raised two clutches this season, three lots of chicks in each, and the bottom, nearer the sea, is home for the Coots. There should be many more birds but there are two busy roads on either side which are inhibiting factors.