Hoarusib River

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Hoarusib River
Physical characteristics
Sourcenear Opuwo
 ⁃ locationKunene Region
MouthAtlantic Ocean
 ⁃ coordinates
18°58′28″S 12°33′38″E / 18.9744112°S 12.5604578°E / -18.9744112; 12.5604578
 ⁃ elevation
0 m (0 ft)
Lengthc.300 km (190 mi)
Basin size15,237 km2 (5,883 sq mi)

The Hoarusib River is an ephemeral river in the Kunene Region region of north-western Namibia. Its source is near the regional capital Opuwo, and the river flows through the Tonnesen and Giraffe Mountains into the Atlantic Ocean.[1] The Hoarusib occasionally carries surface water during the rainy seasons in November and February/March. The catchment area of the Hoarusib is 15,237 square kilometres (5,883 sq mi).[2]

The name Hoarusib is thought to have originated from the geology of this stretch as the Nama word "!naruseb" means "water which twists and turns through a narrow gorge."[3] It is known for its steep canyon walls of black and red volcanic rock, and the strange makalani palms which grows from the pips washed down from upstream. Also found near the bank are "clay castle" formations created by the gradual deposition and erosion of clay.[4]


  1. ^ Jacobson, Peter J.; Jacobson, Kathryn M.; Seely, Mary K. (1995). Ephemeral rivers and their catchments: Sustaining people and development in western Namibia (PDF 8.7MB). Windhoek: Desert Research Foundation of Namibia. pp. 124–125. ISBN 9991670947.
  2. ^ Strohbach, B.J. (2008). "Mapping the Major Catchments of Namibia" (PDF 1.0MB). Agricola. 2008: 63–73. ISSN 1015-2334. OCLC 940637734.
  3. ^ "Tracks4Africa". Tracks4Africa. Retrieved 2017-06-27.
  4. ^ "Clay Castles". Flickr. Retrieved 2017-06-27.