Lake Eucumbene – directions, distances, and regulations

Getting to the lake

You can approach Lake Eucumbene from the west via the Hume Highway and Tumut; from the south via Jindabyne and Berridale; or from the north via Canberra and Cooma.  Despite its size there are no substantial towns on the lake.  The major but small centres of population are official camping grounds. Adaminaby is the official capital and home of famous leaping “big trout”, the town sign boasting a population of 231.

As most people approach from Canberra and Cooma I’ve given guidance and distances from that direction.

  • From Cooma you drive 7 kilometres west on the Snowy Mountains Highway to “The Four Mile” where you find the Alpine Angler www.alpineangler.com.au  and the BP Servo where you can top you up on tackle, flies and advice.
  • At the Four Mile turn right on the Snowy Mountains Highway heading for Tumut and Adaminaby.
  •  There are then three distances you need to note where you can turn left off the highway to reach the lake.
    • From the Four Mile it is 2.2 kilometres to the junction with Slacks Creek Road. Turn left here and travel 22 kilometres to the crossroads with Middlingbank Road.
      • Cross Middlingbank Road and the turning for Middlingbank is 300 metres on the right. With a lake level of 50% you can see the lake from here. Park at the picnic area and toilet facilities 1 kilometre down the track and its a short walk to the eastern or western shores of the lake.  4WD only past this point.
      • Keep going for 6 kilometres and you reach Buckanderra Holiday Village. www.buckenderra.com.au/ which is boom-gate access for guests. Cabins, tennis court and basic facilities and great for families. And access to some great lake frontage including the western side of Middlingbank.
  • From the Four Mile it is 20.7 kilometres to the junction with Middlingbank Road(x). If you turn left here you will reach Berridale (31 kilometres). Its 14 kilometres to Buckanderra and of course you pass Middlingbank again. On the way you also pass a turning on the right for Frying Pan. Another popular camping ground and lake access point for Rushy Plains Bay.
  • From the junction of the Middlingbank Road and Snowy Mountains Highway(x)it is 9.7 kilometres to the turning for Seven Gates.
    • Turn left here and travel 6.7 kilometres to a fork in the gravel road.  At this point you can see the lake straight ahead and you’re facing south west. When the lake is full the headland becomes Wallis Island. At 50% of capacity there are two pronounced bays. Keep going straight and you reach White Rocks Inlet. Turn left and you reach O’Neills.  If you turn left, the first turning to the lake is 0.9 kilometres. Turn right down to O’Neills.
    • From the Seven Gates junction with the Snowy Mountains Highway turn left and drive 15 kilometres to reach Adaminaby. There are numerous accommodation options here including the famous Snow Goose Hotel. Groceries, bakery and of course fishing tackle and advice from Col at the Adaminaby Angler www.adaminabyangler.com.au
    • The author can be contacted through his website www.nakedtrout.com.au
    • From Adaminaby travel west for 2 kilometres to the turning for Old Adaminaby. This will take you to the old town and the boat ramp, and to the Anglers Reach camp site.
    • The turning to Yens Bay is on the left after 4.6 kilometres.
      • Turn left on Bushrangers Hill Road and drive for 500 metres on gravel road to a T junction.  Yens Bay is dead ahead.  You can drive straight ahead down a rough track towards the lake, or turn left and drive 500 metres to the toilet facility and turn right there.  The tracks are fine for 2WD in dry weather but can be boggy after rain.
      • From Adaminaby travel west for 17 kilometres to the turning on the left for Providence Portal and Providence Lodge www.providencelodge.com.au
        • Turn left and drive for 1 kilometre to the portal fence. If the portal from Tantangara Reservoir is open you will hear the roar and see the mist from the high volume water release.  Providence flats stretch from the portal right around to the west, to the junction with the Eucumbene River.  Park at the portal end and walk the banks, unless you are staying at the lodge in which case you will have some shorter walks.
        • A general comment on access.  Most of the lake is accessible along the lake shore, up to the clearly visible high water mark.  Higher than that and it may well be private property.  If you come across fences below high water mark you can climb them but take care not to damage them. Adjacent farmers are able to graze stock to the edge of the lake. Some of the lake shore is only accessible through private property or by boat.  The four bays in this article can be accessed through Snowy Hydro public access roads but if you are going to explore and travel on private property please make sure you get permission.

Regulations

On Lake Eucumbene the daily bag limit is 5 trout, any species combined. The possession limit is 10. The size limit is 25 centimetres for both rainbows and browns. You need a recreational fishing licence to fish in Lake Eucumbene which you can get from local tackle shops or on line www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fisheries/recreational/licence-fee

FACTS AND INFO FOR LAKE EUCUMBENE

Surface area Nearly 15,000 hectares
Volume Nearly 500,000,000,000 litres
Completed 1958
Deepest point Over 100 metres
Towns nearby Adaminaby, Berridale and Cooma
Campsites Buckanderra, Frying Pan, Arnie Crows, Old Adaminaby, Anglers Reach, Providence Lodge
Pub/hotel/motel Snow Goose at Adaminaby, Snowy Mountains Motel Adaminaby
Provisions Adaminaby Spar grocery shop, Adaminaby bakery
Tackle shops Col Sinclair at Adaminaby Angler closest; Cooma Sports, BP Four Mile and Alpine Angler on the way