The boys in the valley have been taking it easy, really savouring the month break after their 4 month intensive Dusi program. However the good rains of late have been too much of a temptation to resist, so we hopped on the Dusi two days ago.



I thought it would be a good thing for the boys to get rid of their ‘river wobbles (which Nagle dam just can’t emulate) before the upcoming Drak Challenge. We paddled from Finger Neck to Marrianney-Foley, on the 50 Miler course.  Paddling around Cabbage Tree, past the First Saddles takeout, thus doing the tricky Bells and Pearl Harbour (last rapid before takeout – safely shot river right) rapids.

With the Dusi a bygone, it was lekker paddling with no pressure, not having to show the guys ‘this ‘n that’. Plus, they are four months the river wiser. Having said that, Richard managed to wrap his boat on the most insignificant grassy mound at the 2nd Saddles put in.

We still had 45min to go, so it was best he wait there till we returned with vehicle and trailer on our way back to Nagle. To limit his limp craft from taking a further battering – making it impossible to repair for Drak.

Lucas broke his cable, which he managed to fix with wire, ‘MacGyver’ style.


Members of the public were shocked to hear that my guys would paddle Confluence in Dusi. “But they are such good runners”, they would say.

My reply, “It’s the only portage on the Dusi that goes around the ‘outside’ of the bend in the river. Every other Dusi portage goes on the ‘inside’, cutting the corner. You have to run it extremely hard to beat a paddler and then you pay the price of that effort on Ngumeni. If you want to be competitive, it’s best to include the paddling the Confluence section in your box of tricks.” With Nagle Dam overflowing, Confluence was a magical level. The boys sailed through like experts. We loaded the trailer, drove back to find Richard. Spirits were high, Muscle Fuel chocolate milkshakes being drunk by all – what a great day on the river.




Come the 1st of march, two of the ‘Change a Life’ guys will take part in the Spur Adventure Challenge (18km MTB/5km trail run), at Groenkloof in Gauteng. I will participate with a black girl as my partner.

Also in March, we will take on the Garmin Wartrail in the Eastern Cape – 60km mnt run, 135km mtb bike, 60 km paddle on the Orange River.

Skumbuzo has started his swimming training for the Xterra offroad triathlon (1.6km swim, 25km mnt bike, 11km trail run) at Albert Falls at the end of March.

The history of higher education in the state dates back to 1808 when, for determination of the portuguese court, the first school of medical education in the country was established the


  • Liz Stapelberg:

    Good luck and we will keep a eye on this space for fresh updates.

  • csadler:

    Im not commenting on drak, but just have a query for Dusi. If you are a strong portager, on first day, is it always better to do sewerage farm portage? And if so, is it better to get out at the pipeline or Pine tree? And at what level is it better to paddle round sewerage farm and get out at the braai takeout?

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