Oldest person to swim across False Bay (male)
Justin Hardcastle
63:104 year(s):day(s)
South Africa (Rooi Els)

The oldest male to swim across False Bay in South Africa is Justin Hardcastle (South Africa, b. 27 October 1960), aged 63 years 104 days on 8 February 2024. This swim was ratified by the Cape Long Distance Swimming Association and the False Bay Swimming Association.

Hardcastle completed the crossing from Miller's Point to Rooi Els in a time of 12 hours 1 minute 56 seconds and was piloted by Derrick Frazer.

False Bay is the largest bay at the southern tip of Africa, situated between False Cape Point (aka Hangklip) and Cape Point. The distance is approximately 34 km (21.1 mi) as the crow flies, but as with any long-distance ocean swim, the final route is greatly affected by currents, wind, swell and waves on the day. Water temperature in the bay varies from 20°C (68°F) in the summer to 10°C (50°F) in the winter. The bay is home to a variety of wildlife, including seals, dolphins, whales and most infamously, great white sharks, although the latter tend to be found nearer the shore, meaning swimmers and their support teams need to be extra-vigilant at the start and end of the crossing.

To date, the fastest man to swim across False Bay is Barend Nortje (South Africa) with a swim time of 7 hours 28 minutes 15 seconds on 20 February 2024. The fastest woman to successfully swim across False Bay is Katherine Persson (South Africa), who completed a west-to-east traverse in 8 hours 9 minutes 26 seconds on 30 November 2022.

The first person to swim across False Bay was Annemie Landmeters (Belgium), who completed a one-way crossing in 9 hours 56 minutes on 30 January 1989. She swam east to west from Rooi Els to Miller’s Point. Three local swimmers (Derek Yach, Godfrey Mocke and Kevin Fialkov) attempted the swim in 1986 but didn’t complete it.