Jukskei / Highveld Crocodile River – Introduction

The sections described here actually comprises two rivers, the Crocodile and its major tributary, the Jukskei. The Crocodile is not paddled upstream of the confluence of the two rivers, and the paddleable section is generally considered to be one river, called the Highveld Crocodile, starting on the Jukskei and ending on the Crocodile.

The river is close to Johannesburg and Pretoria, making it the ideal river for Gauteng-based paddlers to enjoy whitewater. It has been used extensively by K1-paddlers for tripping and racing in the past, although the popularity has decreased a bit due to access problems. In the meantime, commercial rafting has taken off in a big way, as the river has proven popular with rafting clients.

It must be stressed that although the sections are all relatively easy, they become very dangerous at flood levels, due to the weirs and low-level bridges. Another point of interest for paddlers is that the water quality has improved drastically over the past few years, and the water is now tested every second week on behalf of the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry.

The river winds through Nature Reserves and farmland. The mostly unspoilt indigenous bush and surrounding mountains add to the attraction of the trip. Apart from the stretches described below, there are also paddleable stretches below the Hartebeespoort Dam. The Crocodile eventually becomes a main tributary to the Limpopo River.