Ngwempisi River

The upper reaches of the Ngwempisi are still unchartered. The lower section through the Ntungulu Mountains though, is yet another gem. The scenery through this valley is phenomenal. It is very remote and uninhabited and you certainly won’t be disappointed by the river.

  • Ideal for: Kayak
  • Grade: 4, few 5
  • Length: 34km
  • Duration: 5 to 8 hours
  • Type: Fairly continuous
  • Put-in: Dirt road off Mankayane, crosses river
  • Take-out: Dirt road to clinic, crosses river
  • Dam controlled: No
  • Permits: None

MAP 64

Big granite boulders and slides create some tremendous photographic possibilities. There are some danger spots to look out for, though: a certain section named Siphon City has three siphons within a few hundred metres of each other; two of these are river-wide. They should all be portaged. Other than that, everything else is runnable – mostly solid class 4, with one or two of them needing all your fingers.

Without doubt though, the most outstanding feature of this run is the unspoilt beauty of the valley straight from deepest, darkest Africa.

This river description is taken from my book “Run the Rivers of Southern Africa”.
If you have any pictures or recent information on this section of river to share, please contact me:
I appreciate any contributions to keep this content up-to-date.