Water Warrior

Source to sea expedition


It is always great when a plan comes together and the Water Warrior
project was a perfect example of such a plan. 

Providing students from varioing socio-economic back ground with 
the adventure of a life time as well as a opportunity to learn from
South Africas leading envirnmntal orgnaisations through 
a series of citizen scince focused workshops. 

This first of its kind expedition, lay the foundations for stewardship agreements, and multi-stakeholder initiatives within the river catchment area. 


Click through to the individual videos, blog posts, and content below.
We hope you enjoy the Adventure. 

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A first of its kind source 2 sea descent of one of South Africa’s last free-flowing rivers.

Part 1: The Source

The source of the Olifants River is inaccesable by boat, through we have herd some rumours of the more adventurous floating through the cliffs on old inner tubes. But we use our off road vehicles to access the mountanous interiours of the Skurweberg Mountains and its picturesc Witzenberg Valley. Deep in discussion around the impact of the resent drought on river health and the prolific growth of ailen vegitation, day turn to night and we find ourselves driving our vehicles through the river in the dark. 

The Blog - Coming Soon

All good things take time this project took a year of planning, designing, and securing sponsors and partners. 

Part 2: SASSI Stories

Learning always leaves you hungry, for some reason and after spending a day with the the team from WWF we had all worked up quite an apatite. Though expedition life is no free ride and we all get put to work, building fires, cleaning muscles, cutting, and prepping all under the watchful eye of long time friend and expedition team member Chris. It is incredible to see what he can do with a fire, grid and some sustainably sourced sea food. 

The Blog - Coming Soon

miniSASS allowes you to monitor the water quality of rivers within your community, and explore the water quality by looking at invertebrates.

Part 3: On The Water

The nets we set across the width of the river over night caught invasive species, the students flip coins to see who must pick them up to measure and weigh them. For some its the first time they see an alive fish in “real life”. With spirits soaring and laughter at how some of learned to “walk on water” when they touched the fish we start inflating the crocs to start paddling along the rivers course. 

The Blog - Coming Soon

“The Olifants River (Elephant River)…. in the Western Cape
is over 260km in length…..” 

Part 4: Where The River Ends

River catchment areas face constant stress from various land users, in the case of the Olifants River some want to build roads within the rivers course, others want to remove wetlands to create more farm lands and some plant their orchards in the flood planes. With the current lack of rainfall and the pending drought, we found ourselves caught in in the exposed orchards. We found ourselves walking, pulling, carrying, pushing and wondering how on earth the mighty river we crossed in vehicles can be reduced to a trickle.

The Blog - Coming Soon

“river catchment areas are a struggle of balance, between land use zones, water abstraction quotas and recreational activities”  

Part 5: Oceans and Rock Art

The vanishing stream is brought back to life, as the tidal influence is seen over 7km upstream from the rivers mouth. The walking gives way to paddling and we make our way to the final river side workshop, a moble cinima inside a cave covered with ancient rock art. The next morning we paddle as far as we can, but for each meter we move forward the headwind pushes us five back, after hours of getting no where we decide to pack up the boats and drive the rest of the way across the salt pans to the rivers mouth.

The Blog - Coming Soon

“…. this week was like being on a national geogrpahic television show, its something I never thought I could ever be a part of…..”

The Next Adventure 

The Water Warrior Expedition highlighted the importance of adventure based leanring to our team and lead to the formation of our learning vacation series, through our travel division Educational Expeditions. 
Thank you.
John Lucas and Team.   

Support Similar Projects

Alongside the support given by partners and sponsors, these projects are supported by donations recieved through the e4k® Curiosity Fund. Click below if you want to support the next advneture. 

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