Our purpose is to preserve New Zealand's whitewater resources and enhance opportunities to enjoy them safely.


Accident and Incident database, incident reports, safe practice, equipment, rescue techniques, river hazards, grading system, code of practice.

Jetboat sunk in Maori Gully


Ian Fox, Deputy Harbourmaster for ECan, has issued a river hazard warning:

The Environment Canterbury Harbourmaster’s Office has received today a report that on Sunday 23 July 2017 a jet boat sank in Maori Gully, Hurunui River.

Whitewater NZ backs Freshwater Rescue Plan

Kayakers' habitat is New Zealand's freshwater rivers; these rivers are increasingly under threat due to deteriorating water quality. In endorsing the Freshwater Rescue Plan, Whitewater NZ s numerous other organisations including Federated Mountain Clubs of New Zealand Inc., New Zealand Recreation Association, Fish & Game New Zealand, Forest & Bird, Public Health Association, and the Tourism Export Council.

Kaikoura Earthquake - Take care on the river and let us know any changes


The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck North Canterbury in the early morning of Monday 14 November has caused some dramatic changes to our landscapes.

Closure of Motueka River for logging (till 18 Nov)


Tasman District Council have granted Hancock Forest Management a temporary closure of the Motueka River in a ~5km section of the Motueka River from near the Northern end of Aratapu Road to McLeans Reserve (between 172°47.380 / -41°17.633 and 172°48.564 / -

Rangitaiki River (Aniwhenua) closure 29 Mar-1 Apr

(Updated) Timberlands Forestry have advised that they will be tree felling next to the Rangitaiki River approximately 400m downstream of the power station and as such are restricting public access to the river from 7am till 4pm during work days (Monday to Friday). There will be a security guard present at the power station enforcing this closure. This will not affect weekend or after hours access. For more information, contact Jody Thompson .

West Coast river claims Pirongia kayaker

Sean Curtis on Teigdal River, Norway. Photo: Greg Clark

Pirongia kayaker Sean Curtis, 20, drowned on Wednesday 2 March after getting into difficulties on the Collier's Gorge section of the Whitcombe River. He was submerged for 20 minutes and was unconscious when recovered. Efforts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.

Kayaker fatality on the Whitcombe River, West Coast


Whitewater NZ has received the sad news of the drowning of kayaker Sean Curtis while he was descending the Whitcombe River near Hokitika, on Wednesday 2 March.

Safety Officer Shaun McCracken said, "The kayaking community is extremely saddened by the loss of Sean and we extend our condolences and support to his family, friends, and kayaking team. Our members describe Sean as a talented, committed and passionate kayaker. He paddled with vigour, and ensured others were having fun with him. Sean will be missed by many in the New Zealand and international kayaking communities."

Kayakers protest jetboats at Dogleg


Gordon Rayner of Central Otago Whitewater reports that around 100 kayakers and rafters attend the protest paddle, meeting at the Dogleg put-in with the Kawarau River running at 180 cumecs. "Do Little and Dogleg rapids were going off," Gordon said.

Kaituna River access: Coroner's inquest re Louise Jull

Last week Matt Bennett made a submission on behalf of Whitewater NZ to the Coroner's inquest into the death of Louise Jull on the Kaituna River. John Snook also made an independent submission. In doing so they became party to all other submissions (currently confidential). Whitewater NZ has sought professional legal counsel to aid in our submission.

Kayakers mourn death of Louise Jull on Kaituna

Photo: https://www.facebook.com/322288427935070/photos/pb.322288427935070.-22075

Talented kayaker Louise Jull went missing from her kayak during a descent of the Kaituna river on Wednesday evening. Her body was found the following morning by raft-based searchers.

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