Sand River (Limpopo)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Sand River (Polokwane)
Name origin: Polokwane meaning "place of safety" in the Northern Sotho language.[1]
Country South Africa
State Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces
 - left Mulaudzi (Blood), Hout, Moleletsane, Brak
 - right Diep, Koperspruit, Dwars
City Polokwane
Landmark Waterpoort (Soutpansberg)
 - location Yserberg
 - elevation 2,039 m (6,690 ft)
Mouth Limpopo River
 - location near Musina
 - elevation 418 m (1,371 ft)
 - coordinates 22°18′50″S 30°7′41″E / 22.31389°S 30.12806°E / -22.31389; 30.12806Coordinates: 22°18′50″S 30°7′41″E / 22.31389°S 30.12806°E / -22.31389; 30.12806
Length 350 km (217 mi)
Basin 15,630 km2 (6,035 sq mi)
Location of the Sand River mouth

The Sand River or Polokwane River[3] (Afrikaans: Sandrivier) is a watercourse in Limpopo Province, South Africa, a right hand tributary of the Limpopo River. Its new name "Polokwane River" is homonymous with the name of the town of Polokwane, formerly Pietersburg, about 200 kilometres (120 mi) upriver from its mouth. The Sand River flows by the western edge of this town.


It has its source south of Mokopane and flows northwards across central Limpopo Province until it cuts across the Soutpansberg through a deep gorge, the Waterpoort. Then it meanders northwards across the Lowveld until it joins the right bank of the Limpopo 7 kilometres (4 mi) east of Musina.[4] Although considered a perennial stream it is often dry in the winter.

The veld in the Sand River basin has suffered much degradation, mainly due to overgrazing. There are some wetland zones in the basin. These areas are an important ecosystem for certain rare or endangered plants, as well as frog and bird species. There are 18 mines in the sand River basin.[5]

Dams and tributaries[edit]

The only relatively large dam in the Sand River basin is the Mathala Dam, also known as Houtrivier Dam, on the Hout River, a left hand tributary of the Sand.[6] The Diep River meets the right bank of the Sand River northeast of Polokwane town. The Mulaudzi River, also known as "Blood River", joins the Sand River from the left just north of Polokwane. The Seshego Dam is a small dam on the Mulaudzi.[7] The Brak River is an intermittent stream flowing between the Blouberg and the Soutpansberg, joining the left bank of the Sand River about 35 kilometres (22 mi) from the Limpopo River.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]