The Waterline Expedition

  • Location: South Africa
  • Total Distance: 2500km
  • Distance to Date: 0km
  • donation goal: R100 000
  • donations to date: 0
  • start date: Jan 3, 2022


To canoe down the Vaal and Orange rivers in recycled kayaks engaging local schools, communities, business and volunteers to participate in water conservation and creating recyclable solutions.



• Engaging participation in the expedition amongst high schools, communities, businesses and charities across South Africa • Educating students, communities and the public on the issues of wetland conservation, water preservation, recycling and sanitation • Collect data on the health of the two rivers • Use data to give a voice to communities along the two rivers in protecting their water resources


The Waterline Expedition is a water adventure down the Vaal and Orange rivers on recycled kayaks. The river system, consisting of the Vaal and Orange rivers, is the largest continuous body of water within South Africa at a distance of approximately 2,500 kilometers. Two selected paddlers will kayak down the river system from the source of the Vaal River to the Mouth of the Orange on recycled kayaks designed by participating high schools in South Africa. The school with the most rugged and efficient kayak design will win their school a science lab. The two paddlers will collect water-based data as they kayak down the two great South African rivers with the assistance of local high schools and corporate volunteer teams following them. This expedition will be our first collaborative expedition aimed at getting schools and the youth to participate in making a difference by collecting data, creating recyclable solutions and then using that data and initiative to change policy along the rivers, creating water conservation. Together we can make a difference.

As a collaborative expedition, we will encourage high schools across South Africa to participate in the expedition with the paddlers by either designing one of the kayaks, conducting field tests on local rivers or creating water conservation in their communities. The expedition provides a great opportunity for high school students to interact practically in the fields of science, physics, maths, biology and geography and further their education. In addition, high school students will be able to monitor the health of rivers in their regions through access to miniSASS tools provided by conservation charities such as WESSA and Wildlands. We will also encourage corporate teams and volunteers to engage with the expedition by providing packaged tours supporting and following the kayakers down the two rivers. During these packaged tours, corporate teams and volunteers can either paddle with the kayakers or engage and interact with local communities and schools on river conservation, assisting water conservation charities in their projects and monitoring of rivers through miniSASS tools.

If you have experience in canoeing or kayaking, over 18 years old and really keen on becoming an expeditionist for this expedition, please apply by referring to our Get Involved page and filling out the form stating your interest in the Waterline Expedition.

If you are interested in supporting the expedition as either a corporate team or a volunteer, please contact us by referring to our Get Involved page and filling out the form stating your interest in the Waterline Expedition.

If you are interested in supporting the expedition as a school, charity or sponsor, please contact us at info@expeditionists.org

The Route:

The expedition will start just above Ermelo in Mpumalanga on the Vaal River and end at the river mouth of the Orange River in the Northern Cape. Please see our map below.



Supported Charities

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