9-10 September 2023
Breede River Canoe Marathon


1. Each paddler is reminded of the indemnity that they have accepted by entering the race.
2. Paddlers need to be aware of the inherent risks involved in river paddling and need to accept responsibility for their own safety.
3. The Breede River has been in flood over the last 2 weeks. It is looking most probably that the race will be paddled on over 100 Cumecs this year. This will be the highest level in a number of years.
4. The race from Robertson to Bonnievale on 31 August was paddled on over 600 Cumecs and was upgraded to an A grade race.
5. Paddlers are therefore reminded that the race safety officer may change the grading of the race from B to A grade on the morning of the event.
6. There have been heavy rains and thick snow falls in the region round Ceres over the weekend of 31 August and this drains into the Breede.
7. It can take up to 4 days or more to reach Robertson and the level of the river on race day is not possible to forecast.
8. It should also be noted that there are no dams on the Breede River, so water flow is completely natural and therefore can be very erratic.
9. The concern is not only round obstacles and entrapment, but the concern is also round the cold water. On the pre races a number of paddlers had swims and hypothermia is a real concern because of the time spent in the water. Swims were also had as a result of “whirlies” in the “middle of nowhere.” The mountains are at present covered with snow, so the water is very cold.

Race briefing

1. There will be a race briefing each morning that paddlers need to attend.
2. It however needs to be kept in mind that it is not possible to highlight each and every obstacle.
3. At the anticipated levels, there will be a lot of variability round obstacles and new obstacles can also arise.


It should be noted that the following extra costs will be incurred if an injury occurs that requires transportation to a medical facility.
– The costs of transporting a patient to a private hospital will be billed for at medical aid tariffs and the patients will be held liable for these costs.
– Aero-medical evacuations will be decided upon medical merit and patients transported by air to private hospitals will be billed at medical aid tariffs. The cost of medical evacuations by air to a provincial hospital will be carried by the provincial ambulance service. The Provincial Medical Director for Emergency Medical Services or his delegate will make decisions in conjunction with medical crews present at the event or the medical doctor at the local hospital about activation of the medical helicopter if required.