Blyderivierpoort Dam

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Blyderivierpoort Dam
Blyderiver Dam.jpg
View from the south
Official name Blyderivierpoort Dam
Blyde River Poort Dam
Country South Africa
Location Mpumalanga
Coordinates 24°32′15″S 30°47′20″E / 24.53750°S 30.78889°E / -24.53750; 30.78889Coordinates: 24°32′15″S 30°47′20″E / 24.53750°S 30.78889°E / -24.53750; 30.78889
Purpose Irrigation, industrial
Opening date 1974
Owner(s) Department of Water Affairs
Dam and spillways
Type of dam Arch-gravity dam
Impounds Blyde River
Height 71 m
Length 240 m
Creates Blyderivierpoort Dam Reservoir
Total capacity 54 050 000 m³
Surface area 240 ha

Blyderivierpoort Dam is an gravity-arch dam on the Blyde River, in the lower Blyde River Canyon, near Hoedspruit in Mpumalanga, South Africa. It also floods the lower reaches of the Blyde's Ohrigstad River tributary. The dam was completed in 1974.[1] The 71 m high dam wall is situated 3 km from Swadini resort by road.


Its key purpose is to provide a stable water supply for irrigators of the Blyde River Irrigation district and to provide additional water for mining and industry at Phalaborwa.[1]

Irrigation district[edit]

Orchards and croplands were established along the lower Blyde in the latter half of the 20th century, with 23,521 ha devoted to irrigation in 1995.[2]


During 1965 the community that lived at the site of the proposed dam was resettled (with compensation) by the government to nearby towns including Buffelshoek, Acornhoek, Beverleyshoek and Bushbuckridge. Some stone walled settlements, cultural artefacts and graves are now submerged under the dam.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Rowe, Christine. "Heritage management of archaeological, historical and industrial resources on the Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve" (PDF). University of Pretoria. Retrieved 20 April 2016. 
  2. ^ International Water Management Institute (IWMI) (September 2008), Olifants River Basin in South Africa (PDF), waternetonline, p. 37