Coast KZN

31 Jan 2018

Swimmers conquer Jozini Dam Gorge

Larry Bentley (Zululand Observer) Picture: Celebrating their first Jozini Gorge crossing are Jay Azran, Ruth Azran, Mike Oberholtzer, Andrew Stevens and José de Charmoy PHOTO: Gameplan Media

Swimmers complete 8km swim in aid of CHOC

A whopping R70 000 was raised by five brave open water swimmers who completed the first crossing of the hippo and crocodile inhabited Jozini Gorge at the Pongolapooort Dam.

They raised the money for the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation.
The 8km swim from the gorge mouth to the Jozini Tiger Lodge was closely monitored by a flotilla of escort boats to ensure the safety of the four men and one woman who undertook the crossing on Sunday, 21 January.

The first group, consisting of José de Charmoy, Ruth Azran, Mike Oberholser and Andy Stevens, set off at 7.45am in perfect conditions with little to no wind and welcome cloud cover.

Azran set off 20 minutes after the main group, and caught up with them halfway across the gorge.

They arrived at the jetty at the Tiger Lodge in 2 hours and 41 minutes to become the first swimmers to complete the Jozini Gorge crossing.

‘We were truly blessed with fantastic conditions, a strong easterly would have made the swim that much more challenging, but luckily this never picked up,’ said Azran.

Buoyed by their achievement, they are now planning to make this an annual event.