Steve Hammond , our charming Englishman, answers a few questions in between his busy schedule in Nepal. Tell us why you like guiding for Water By Nature? Morocco, Zambezi ,Turkey and Nepal! What amazing places to have your work!! It still blows me away that i get to go to all these amazing countries and get paid for it. Living the dream! This is a very hard question to answer in such few words, but the people , culture, the remoteness of the rivers, the diversity of each and every country and of course the epic rafting and kayaking. I’m in a job that I love and try to excel myself on each and every trip! It’s an amazing opportunity that i grasp with both hands. Best moment on a river trip? OK an easy one!! I met my wonderful fiancee Stacey on the Mighty Zambezi. That trip was epic ! Favorite guides to work with and why? I have had the opportunity to work with amazing people from all different walks of life. The experience and humor of working with my boss, Hamish is always mega-fun. Lovemore’s singing and happiness, always a joy to run rivers with him. Stan’s … Continue reading
We frequently have guests who decide to join a trip based on a birthday celebration or even occasionally we have people celebrating anniversaries. We were fortunate enough to have 2 wonderful couples join us recently on the Zambezi for the same reason, their honeymoons. Both couples added to their experiences by going on safari to Chobe National Park to the gorgeous Elephant Valley Lodge, and taking a trip out to the Devils Pool, on Livingstone Island, for some utterly memorable photos! Although both couples joined the same trip celebrating the same occasion, Anique and Tom were from the Netherlands in their late 20′s whilst Pat and Steven from the UK were in their 70′s and celebrating their FIRST rafting trip. When I met Pat and Stephen at a Travel Expo, Pat asked ” What is the best river to raft?” May answer naturally was the Zambezi. “Could I do it she enquired?” Of course was my response. Not only did they conquer 4 days of the wildest rapids on the Mighty Zambezi (without flipping or swimming) they flew back to their hotel by helicopter and took in as many extra activities as they could. We helped both couples celebrate with … Continue reading
I first went to Nepal more than 20 years ago to see what all the guide chat was about this place. Wow, what a mecca for running loads of great whitewater rivers. Almost all of them are multi-day trips where you’ll get to experience the wonderful culture and people of Nepal. Add to that the stunning food such as Dahl Bhat and Momos, the remote and stunning beaches and the wonderful folks you’ll get to sit around a campfire with, make it a much loved destination by our guests and guides alike. The Karnali River: A rafting classic to be done post-monsoon in early to mid October, the Karnali offers wonderful vistas on the journey to the river, set in the west of the country. A short hike in sees us on this gorgeous beach, on this Holy river fed from Tibet. As we head downstream to the takeout in Chisopani, we’ll be treated to jungle clad forests, wildlife (people have even seen leopards before) and a remote journey allowing us to access world class rapids such as Jailhouse, Flip and Strip, Godshouse, Freight Train and Sweetness and Light. This is Nepal river running at it’s best. A great hint … Continue reading
How about some wonderful suggestions of gorgeous places to stay along the Zambezi River? Over the years our guests have shared their favourite places to stay whilst on this wonderful river. While this is by no means a definitive list or in any particular order, we hope you’ll take the time to spend a few extra days and sample some of these wonderful places along the Zambezi River in and around Livingstone. 1. The River Club: For some SERIOUS luxury, pop in and see Mr Jones and the team at this colonial marvel. It is SO classy, it doesn’t appear pretentious. Enjoy being woken up by the hippos that you’ll hear from your gorgeous bed, with open plan living to take in the most gorgeous views of the river. 2. Taita Falcon Lodge: Hidden from view unless you glance upwards floating down the Zambezi River above Rapid 17, this rustic secret is a wonderful retreat. Faan and AnMarie are wonderful hosts and will take care of everything. On our river trips, your helicopter flight back from the river concludes by landing here. 3. Moemba Falls Beach: For many of our guests, this is the beach along the river they love … Continue reading
With the onset of so much development and roads on the Sun Kosi River, we have decided to set our focus more on sending clients to the Karnali and Tamur rivers, allowing our guests to get remote and disconnect, in a familiar theme with many of our other destinations such as the Grand Canyon and the Zambezi. The Karnali River is in the “wild west” of Nepal and offers some of the best rapids in the world, stunning beaches and the opportunity to view wildlife at close range. Mugger crocodiles and even leopards have been spotted on previous trips. It is world class rapids such as “Godshouse” Flip and Strip, Juicer, Freight Train and Sweetness & Light most people go for. BIG WARM WATER! No, it is not cold Himalayas. At the same latitude as Florida, experience sun drenched beaches and gorgeous waterfalls on your journey. Many guests take the opportunity after the trip for a few days exploring Bardia National Park, Nepal, premier wildlife sanctuary with it’s elephants, rhino’s and the rare Bengal tiger. Slip away for a few days relaxation at this stunning park before traveling back to Kathmandu and the vibrancy that engulfs this special city.
We wanted to say thanks so much to all those folks out there who entered our Facebook Grand Canyon rafting trip competition. Our eventual winner was Ant Hoard from Cape Town and a river guide for Gravity Adventures in Cape Town. Ant received a phenomenal number of shares in the competition, eventually becoming a runaway winner to raft the Grand Canyon. Ant will be keeping a bit of the video diary on his trip down the Colorado and you’ll be able to see that on his return at the end of May. We have set up our tracker, so that guests and friends can follow progress of the trip down river and on the many hikes.
With so many trips vying for our attention, adventure travel can pose a major dilemma on which destination to choose to travel to a destination, just that little bit different. Nepal is that destination and the Tamur is that trip. The Tamur is one of the tributaries of the famed Sun Kosi river that is fed from Mt Kangchenjunga, the third highest peak in the world. The adventure of any trip to Nepal, begins in Kathmandu, that most fascinating of cities, with its sacred cows sleeping in the middle of roads, rickshaws transporting people around this vibrant town and the bright lights and great restaurants of Thamel. Boarding our aircraft, we fly to the east of Nepal where you’ll get stunning views of the world’s highest peak. Our adventure takes on a whole new meaning as we hike for 4 days with our team of 100 porters, who carry everything for our expedition through traditional villages overlooking stunning Himalayan Peaks. At Dobhan, where we start the river portion of the journey, we are met by some of the most challenging whitewater in this Himalayan country. With more than 130 Grade 3-4+ rapids over the 120 kilometre duration of this trip, … Continue reading
There are many varying craft on offer on white water rafting trips to enhance your adventure. Each offer a different means to run rapids on a river, giving you safe options to challenge some of the biggest whitewater in the world, such as on the Zambezi or in Nepal. Other craft are there for your safety. Safety kayaks and safety catarafts primarily run rapids first and wait at the bottom of rapids in strategic locations in case you should pop out of the raft. Paddle raft: This raft will have 6-8 paddlers plus a guide, who will give commands from the rear of the raft. An extremely manuvreable craft which involves excellent teamwork. A common boat used on the steep creeks of California. Stern Raft/Paddle Assist: This is an adaptation of the above craft, however the guide will sit at the back with a set of oars which allows extra power and stability in big water rapids such as in Chile and the Zambezi. Oar Raft: A boat that is traditionally used for equipment such as food, coolers, but on occasion, these craft can be used to take passengers too. This is common on the Grand Canyon although traditionally most … Continue reading
The Grand Canyon. Possibly the most famous of all river trips, but for many people who have done this trip, as much as the rapids are excellent fun, many people love the access that the river gives us to stunning hikes, some short, others longer. The diversity of the Grand Canyon allows us to sample so many varied hikes every time we do the trip. Here is a sample of some of the hikes we love. Havasu Creek: Deer Creek Patio Thunder River Blacktain Canyon Hilltop ruins above Unkar Rapid Shinomo Creek Nankoweap Granaries North Canyon Elves Chasm Little Colorado As you progress further downstream and past Lava, most of the great hikes are over and it tends to get fairly warm down there. Don’t forget also to pop into Phantom Ranch on your way down to sample and ICE COLD lemonade and post some of your Water By Nature postcards back home. We also can’t really class it as a “hike” but the magnificent Redwall Cavern is well worth a stop on your trip. Do you agree with our choices? What hikes do YOU love? The best part of all this, is you could win a trip for FREE … Continue reading
Rafting is perhaps not the first thing that people associate with the Kingdom of Morocco. Most people will associate it with the vast Sahara Desert, camels and the vibrant and fascinating cities like Marrakech. Around 5 hours north east of Marrakech lies the picturesque and fun Ahansel River. It has many of the qualities of a European Alps style river, but without the crowds. Starting beneath the imposing La Cathedrale and traveling via a series of stunning campsites littered with cedar trees and rhododendrons down to the lake of Bin El Ouidane offers those wanting to explore this wonderful region, time to walk to ancient Kasbahs, meet people and sample wonderful food prepared along the way by our guides. A recent group visiting from the USA, many of whom had done the Grand Canyon, felt this trip was even more impressive in it’s beauty. Advertising agency executive Duncan Shaw, celebrating his 25th wedding anniversary with wife Marybeth, was blown away by the food on the trip. Canapes, wine and cheese, cake made on the river and pizzas made from scratch individually for all guests was something that was unique for them all. On the Deserts & Rivers option of this … Continue reading