Things to see & do in the Lake Eucumbene Region
The Lake Eucumbene Region can provide you and your family with an unforgettable holiday experience. Whether you're staying for a day, a week or even longer, you'll be constantly amazed at the changing scenery and beauty of the area.
No other region in Australia can offer the holiday maker so much variety. Whether you like to fish, snow or water ski, bush walk, explore historic sites or simply relax and unwind, the Eucumbene region has it all.
Here are just a few things you could do while visiting this magnificent, alpine region.
When you think Lake Eucumbene, fishing is usually the first thing that springs to mind.
The lake is teeming with rainbow and brown trout and is highly regarded as one of the best trout waterways on the Australian mainland.
Did you know? The biggest trout ever caught in the lake is believed to be a monster 10kg (22lbs) brown - come up and see if you can beat that. Visit our Fishing Page.
Launching a boat on Lake Eucumbene is easy and hassle free and, with recent upgrades to the launching ramps at both Old Adaminaby and Anglers Reach, you'll have your boat on the water in no time.
When boating on Lake Eucumbene, please remember that weather conditions can change very quickly. Strong winds can turn clear, calm waters into a dangerous mix of swell and white caps. Always check the weather forecast before launching at Lake Eucumbene.
Life jackets must be warn at all times when on Lake Eucumbene and always look out for hazards (trees, old fences and even house foundations) especially as the lake drops.
Summer days in the mountains can get hot and there's nothing better than taking a refreshing dip in the cool, crystal clear waters of Lake Eucumbene or one of the many nearby rivers.
Yes, you did read right - you can water ski and wind surf at Lake Eucumbene!
Ok, so the water is pretty cool for much of the year, but the wide open spaces and lack of people on the lake make it a great place to try and stay upright.
If you are venturing onto the lake, take care for submerged obstacles (eg trees), especially when the lake is low.
Exploring the ruins
In more recent times, the waters of Lake Eucumbene have receded to levels not seen since the lake was created in 1958. As the water dropped, many of the original building foundations (left behind when the town was moved 7km away) 'resurfaced'.
Visitors to Old Adaminaby can currently see the steps to the original St. Mary's Catholic Church, ruins of the Adaminaby Convent and many more foundations.
NB: Once Lake Eucumbene reaches 50% a lot of the ruins are hidden under the water.
The Worlds Largest Trout
The 'Big Trout', brainchild of local businessman Leigh Stewart and built in 1973 by local artist and fisherman Andy Lomnici, is a 10-metre-high fibreglass model of a rainbow trout. It's part of the more than 150 'Big Things' located throughout Australia.
The Big Trout is located in the Adaminaby Shopping Centre and easily visible from the Snowy Mountains Highway. It's a must see when visiting the region.
Old Adaminaby Cemetery
The Old Adaminaby Cemetery sits on the eastern banks of Lake Eucumbene. The cemetery dates back to the late 1800's.
The cemetery contains the graves of many of the regions early pioneers, including David Brayshaw (read more under 'sightseeing' below), and is the final resting place of many well known local farming family names.
Did you Know? At full, the waters of Lake Eucumbene are just 5 meters below some of the grave sites.
Selwyn Snowfields is widely regarded as the premier learn-to-ski, family snow recreation area in NSW. Located in the Kosciuszko National Park (just 35km from Providence Portal on Lake Eucumbene) Selwyn Snowfields is committed to providing the most affordable and friendly snow experience.
Cabramurra - Australia's Highest Township
Cabramurra (at 1,488m) is the highest permanently inhabited town in Australia. It's home to workers of Snowy Hydro. There are 48 houses, a general store, petrol station, primary school, wet canteen and indoor swimming pool. There's even a downhill ski slope (with lights for night skiing) and tennis courts.
In winter, Cabramurra can be covered by snow for 3-4 months. No overnight accommodation is available at Cabramurra, but a day visit to this truly unique alpine town will leave you breathless.
The Snowy Mountains Scheme
The Snowy Mountains Scheme (constructed between 1949 & 1974) is the largest engineering project ever undertaken in Australia. It consists of 16 major dams (including Lake Eucumbene), 7 powers stations, a pumping station and 225km of tunnels, pipelines and aqueducts.
More than 100,000 people from over 30 countries worked on the Snowy Scheme.
Interestingly, only 2% of the entire construction is visible above the ground. Tours of some of the underground power stations are available. More about the Snowy Mountains Scheme.
Historic Kiandra Goldfields
The Kiandra Gold Rush peaked in 1860 and, at the time, more than 10,000 people lived in Kiandra (making it bigger than present day Cooma). At the height of 'the rush' in 1860, 172,000 oz of gold was produced, and nuggets weighing 28 pounds were found.
The harsh climate, primitive living conditions and a declining gold production meant the population dwindled quickly. By the early 1930s all gold mining ceased in the area.
Today, little remains of the original town (the small, historic cemetery a must see) but the area is steeped in history and, if you listen carefully, you may just hear an old timer yell 'gold'.
Yarrangobilly Caves / Thermal Pool
Located in the northern end of the Kosciuszko National Park, the Yarrangobilly Caves are set inside the deep gorges & rugged bluffs of the Yarrangobilly River Valley.
Formed over thousands of years, the caves have stunning columns, underground pools and grand columns. Ranger guided and self guided tours are available daily. Yarrangobilly also has a natural thermal pool, which is always 27°C - so bring your swimmers!
The Lake Eucumbene Region has so many things to see you could visit a 100 times and still not see it all. One such little treasure is Brayshaw's Hut (located on the Bobeyan Road that links Adaminaby and Canberra).
The hut was built for David Brayshaw in 1903. David lived in the hut for 28 years. Brayshaw's Hut is one of only two timber slab and shingle farm dwellings remaining in the Namadgi National Park. Look for it as you head for Adaminaby.
Originally part of the Currango pastoral station, Currango Homestead was built in 1895 by Arthur Triggs. It became part of the then Kosciuszko State Park in 1944, but remained occupied by Tom and Mollie Taylor, who ran it as a working farm.
The property is now owned by the office of Environment and Heritage and was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999. It is now lived in by caretakers who rent out the property as tourist accommodation. NB: the road to Currango Homestead is closed from the June to October long weekends due to snow.
Currango Homestead is about 3 hours drive from Canberra, 1.5 hours from Tumut and 2 hours from Cooma. More information on staying at Currango Homestead.
Commenced in 1958 and completed in 1960, Tantangara Dam is located on the Murrumbidgee River, approximately 6 kilometres downstream of Gurrangorambla Creek. The dam is wholly within the Kosciuszko National Park. Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra of Kent visited the dam in 1959, during its construction.
There are several ways to access Tantangara Dam, the most common is via Tantangara Dam Road. The turnoff is on the Snowy Mountains Highway, 2 km W of Providence Portal if you're travelling from Adaminaby. The 14km dirt road is generally accessiable year round, but can be tricky in deeper snow and is occassionally closed in heavy snow.
Fishing at Tantangra Dam can make the trip worthwhile and is home to some of the bigger browns in the region.
You'll feel like the "Man from Snowy River" when you saddle up and head for the mountains around the Lake Eucumbene Region.
There are several great horse riding and trekking businesses around the region, catering for beginners right through to the expert rider. Many offer day long rides or, for the more adventurous, 3 or 5 day mountain escapes - complete with damper and a boiling billy!
Located about 60km from Lake Eucumbene (Old Adaminaby), Cooma is the 'Gateway to the Snowy Mountains'.
The town boasts a population of 8,000 and sits 823m above sea level. In winter, temperatures in Cooma can drop to as low as -11°C.
Canberra is 110km from Adaminaby (via Bobeyan Road) and is a great stop over on your way to, or from, the Lake Eucumbene Region.
Canberra has a population of over 420,000 and is home to some of Australia's most significant institutions - Australian War Memorial, National Library, National Museum, Arboretum, National Zoo & Aquarium and Parliament House.