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                                 Map of the Kowie River


The area of the Kowie River catchment is given as 576 km2 by Day (1981) and the Directorate of Water Affairs in River Flow Data (1978).  

Noble and Hemens (1978) give the area as 769 km2 and Ninham Shand (1981) as 730 km.(Ref 1)

Skelton (1980) classes the Kowie as an "intermediate" river as opposed to systems originating on the Great Escarpment or small coastal rivers.  It is therefore one which "extends inland as far as the "intermediate" mountain ranges or hills such as the "Cape Fold Belt mountains".  He considers these "intermediate" rivers as of 'ancient origin, tracing back to the earliest post-Gondwana drainage region".  The signifance of this is that in eroding back these rivers could 'capture' tributaries of adjacent systems together witht he faunistic components of these systems. (Ref 1)

In this way, according to Skelton, the Kowie River would have captured the Bloukrans river which was formerly a tributary of the Kap River, which is a tributary of the Great Fish River.

According to Van Wyk (1961) and Day (1981) the Kowie has its source in the hills of the "Grahamstown Heights" from where it flows in a south-easterly direction draining the major part of the Bathurst region.  Its major tributaries are the Bloukrans, the Bakrivier and the Lushington (or Torrens) River.  The Little Kowei River is a smaller tributary which enters the estuarine portion of the river 14km from the mouth. There are also a number of smaller unnamed streams entering the river along its course.  (Ref 1)

The total length of the Kowie River is approximately 70 km.   (Ref 1)

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