The pioneers of river rafting in South Africa remain the leading operators.
The RIVERMAN, Graeme Addison, opened up South Africa's rafting routes on the Orange, Tugela, Doring and other rivers. He also developed the rafts and equipment.

Long before RIVERMAN was established as a touring operation, exploration was going on in remote areas where few had ever paddled. The appeal of our wide open spaces, hidden river valleys, and amazing scenery attracted a few hardy types.

We opened up rafting and kayaking tours on the Orange River, Great Fish, Tugela, Umkomaas, Umzimkulu, Wilge/Olifants, Doring and finally the Vaal (following River Rafters). Our speciality was always whitewater and we have never used open Indian-style canoes. However, there was a need for an inflatable canoe so we developed one - the famous Croc.

In the 1970's The Riverman started running university club trips and by the early eighties this had become a fulltime occupation. Until that time nobody had thought rivers could be rafted by tour groups: it seemed that flows were too unreliable, channels were too rocky, and nobody would want to try it anyway
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The first 2-seater "Croc" rafts (pictured above) were Graeme's idea and appeared on the Orange River in 1985. The "rafting Professor" set out to prove that not only were our rivers runnable, they offered some of the most extraordinary scenery and whitewater excitement anywhere in the world.

Graeme, who is a real Professor (Communication and Information), is today the author of two books on river rafting and the world's rivers. He has gone on innovating, introducing guided 4-6 seater rafts and more recently the passenger oarboat on rivers they said could never be rafted. RIVERMAN has also adopted the handy little "Gecko" for Vaal and Orange tubing.
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