Four kilometres south from the little town of Sesriem lies the areas only permanent water source. Sesriem Canyon is a 1 km long depression that was carved by erosion. Steep walls of 30-40 metres hug the ephemeral Tsauchab River that flows all the way to Sossusvlei after good rains. For early settlers the upper reaches of the canyon were the only reliable water source. Sesriem means “six belts” in Afrikaans and the settlers had to tie together six belts to haul the water out of the canyon.