Whitewater NZ is a volunteer organisation and we rely on memberships and donations to do all the work we do. We provide a national voice for whitewater issues. We lobby for conservation and access so that we can all enjoy the amazing river resources of NZ.


Mo ngā awa te aroha, he waiaroha. For the love of rivers. Your membership is important! It’s only $10 to join and as a member of Whitewater NZ you can help make our voice stronger. You’ll be helping to fight for river access and the conservation of our whitewater treasures. If you love New Zealand’s rivers you should be a member of Whitewater NZ!

Our members are people that participate in whitewater paddlesports; people that paddle kayaks, canoes, packrafts, river bugs – individuals, communities and clubs across Aotearoa, university and school kayak clubs, local clubs, gatherings of people where we share and encourage others to immerse themselves in the whitewater domain.  This includes competitive athletes striving to compete in canoe slalom against the best in the world at the Olympics, and it includes people that meander down a gentle stretch of river to rejuvenate their spirit.

Our many successes include:


  • Successfully reinstating legal access to the Lower gorges of the Kaituna River
  • WCOs to protect the Buller and its tributaries; the Motu; the Rangitikei; the Rangitata; the Mohaka; the Motueka; the Kawarau (including recent protection for the Nevis); the Grey; the Rakaia, the Hurunui, Ngaruroro and others 
  • Successfully opposing Westpoer’s plans to dam the pristine and magical Waitaha River
  • Successfully opposing Meridian’s plans to dam the pristine and magical Mokihinui River
  • Significant reductions in takes and reduction in the hazards posed by intake structures on the Waimakariri and Rakaia Rivers – (Central Plains Water Scheme)
  • Negotiation of mitigation for the loss of kayaking amenity on the Arnold river and at Tekapo and Hawea (including the Hawea wave), and negotiating and managing access to and releases on other rivers (eg, Mangahao, Wairoa, Tekapo, Pukaki)
  • Presentations to the Tasman District Council, West Coast Regional Council, Environment Canterbury and others on their regional plans 
  • Lobbying Government to take action on improving water quality 
  • Provision of river information on our website, along with buy and sell and other forums
  • Coordination of Water Safety NZ funding for water safety courses
  • Development of national strategies – a conservation strategy, a recreation strategy and work towards a further survey to assess the importance of all of New Zealand’s rivers and kayaker flow requirements

Most of this work is undertaken by volunteers, but your membership provides the resources to engage technical, legal and economic advice to assist in our work.  What will it cost you to join Whitewater NZ? What will it cost if you don’t?