About The River Ramble

Who can participate.

The RMBOA River Ramble is open to all financial members of the River Murray Boat Owners Association (RMBOA) and guests on their vessel. It normally has a range of skippers spanning novices to Master mariners.

All vessels that comply with boating regulations and can reliably cover each leg of the Ramble are welcome. The vessels usually range from small open tinnies to large commercial houseboats or even paddlewheelers.

The River Ramble is a family oriented cruise and crews can range in age from under 8 to over 80. Children are always welcome on the understanding that their parents/guardians are responsible for their safety and behaviour at all times.

Pets are also normally welcome on the Ramble, provided that they are always under effective control and do not disrupt the enjoyment of others. Further restrictions apply if the Ramble moors in a location with restrictions on domestic animals.

Where & When

The RMBOA River Ramble is conducted along various parts of the River in South Australia, although they normally start from a location within easy reach of Adelaide. It is traditionally conducted close to the Easter Holiday every second year, the next Ramble is in late March 2023.


Because the RMBOA River Ramble is a club-only function, the fees cover the cost of planning and conducting the Ramble. Some competitions and events may request donations for a selected charity, but this is normally limited to a gold coin donation. The Ramble is a family-budget oriented event.

The RMBOA River Ramble fee generally covers the skipper and one other crew. Additional crew are welcome, but a fee is charged for each extra person to cover their use of the facilities provided.

Each skipper must be a current member of the Association. Where the Ramble is over-subscribed, members at the time the Ramble was formally announced will receive preference over those that join with their application.

Vessel Insurance

Advice from the RMBOA's insurance company is that the Association could be leaving itself open to litigation if it knowingly allowed uninsured boats to take part in an Association organised cruise and there was an accident on the river that caused damage or injury beyond the resources of the uninsured skipper to pay.

For this reason, the RMBOA has to insist on sighting evidence that Ramble vessels have at least Third Party Insurance Cover of at least $10 million for the duration of the Ramble. This requirement is not negotiable.

Third Party Insurance Cover provides cover for your legal liability to pay compensation for death or bodily injury to other people or damage to their property arising from your ownership or operation of your boat.


While each Rambler is responsible for their own vessel, the more experienced members assist where they can. Experienced members also provide advice about local river conditions and offer assistance to inexperienced members when they go through Locks or when selecting mooring sites.

Ramble Facilities

The RMBOA River Ramble ensures toilet facilities are available at each overnight mooring location for the main part of the Ramble. This allows vessels without on-board facilities to participate.

An optional additional leg to the Ramble may be included where the RMBOA does not provide toilet facilities. This allows for more flexible mooring locations that do not have road access to the river. In these cases, the RMBOA will endeavour to ensure that smaller vessels can have their porta-potties or similar carried on a larger vessel in the fleet.


At selected locations, the RMBOA arranges entertainment for Ramblers. This entertainment can either be on the riverbank or in a nearby venue. Besides professional entertainers (and talented members), the RMBOA arranges other events such as fancy dress evenings.


The Ramble also runs competitions such as "Spot the Mascot" where Ramblers have to identify which boat "Spot" travels in each day, a photography competition, a Carp fishing competition and "Cryptic Clues" where ramblers have to identify locations along the river based on cryptic clues. Some competitions may have a children's division.

Optional Catered Meals

The RMBOA arranges for optional meals usually provided by local service clubs at some town moorings. The provides Ramblers with the opportunity to have a relaxed evening meal without having to cook and clean up. These optional meals also inject money into the local community.


The RMBOA produces a range of memorabilia for the Ramble such as commemorative medallions, Ramble Flags and (optional) Ramble clothing.

Ramble Information

Ramblers receive a range of documentation including the RMBOA Voyage Planning Guide, RMBOA Members Handbook, Daily Running Sheets and local tourist information.

The Voyage Planning Guide provides information about provisioning for a voyage and provides information such as contact numbers for each Lock, river refuelling locations between Goolwa and Wentworth, Internet access points,

Waste Disposal Stations, public toilets near the river, emergency service locations/contact numbers and more. The Voyage Planning Guide and the Members Handbook are part of the kit provided to members when they join the RMBOA.

The Daily Running Sheets are specific to each Ramble and outline the events for each day of the Ramble, recommended departure times, estimated travelling times and local river conditions. The running sheets are updated at the afternoon briefings each day.