Bumper Run

November to April. Class 3+: Not for the faint-hearted.
Hectic Harry via Tokoloshe to Otters’ Haunt
Running the rapid called Dirty Harry will make your day!

Running the rapid called Hectic Harry will make your day!

A rafting route run exclusively by RIVERMAN is the exciting and technical run from above the Parys Golf course down to Big Daddy. This is by far the most thrilling route on the local Vaal. You must be physically able and willing to steer your boat down fast rocky channels, with unexpected drops. There are the inevitable knocks and capsizes.

It is recommended that you first do the Otters Playground or Drama Tour for experience but you can tackle this route straight off if you’re brave. The Bumper run takes 3-5 hours ( half-day or full day depending on the river level). We do the Bumper Run only in summer when the river is over 50 cumecs but below 200cuwhen it gets too big and tricky. The run is adrenalin-packed but also extremely scenic.

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The Vaal Bumper Run starts with 'Hectic Harry' and can end with 'Big Daddy' if you go all the way. It's good Class 3 water, provided the flow is reasonable and not too low or too high!s.

A beaut route for intermediate kayakers

We find our way among many islands which are completely secluded from the nearby town of Parys. As we approach the Vaal River bridge, we see waterbirds preying on fish in the many rock pools. After Bridge Rapid we float down calm channels to the Friendly Rapid, and then on to Otters’ Haunt. We can stop there or push through to Big Daddy for a final blast of whitewater.

This part of the Vaal is neglected by rafting operators because it takes some effort to get there and it requires expert guiding. Finding our way through the maze of channels is a problem, but we know it all well from years of river operations! It’s great for 2-seater crocs and kayaks rather than the larger rafts.

  • If you’re bok for it, try the Bumper Run! This is not for the faint-hearted and will not work for corporate or family outings. But it’s great for adventurous groups seeking a challenge.
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