Cockatoo Lake, SE South Australia.

Cockatoo Lake boat ramp

Cockatoo Lake boat ramp and beyond, August 2007

Cockatoo Lake is situated 30km north, northeast of Naracoorte via Riddoch Highway and Morambro Lane, and 20km south of Padthaway via Grubbed Road, which runs nearly parallel to the Riddoch Highway in South Australia’s south east.


Cockatoo Lake, July 2016

The lake bed in July 2016

The lake is fed by Morambro Creek which is sourced in the Wimmera in western Victoria and crosses the border into South Australia near the small township of Frances. It is thought that around 70-90% of the flow in the creek originates in the Wimmera region.


January 2017

January 2017 water level.

In recent years it has spent much of the time dry (see top photo) but with the good winter and spring during 2016 it has filled for the first time in a number of years. Any overflow from the lake goes out through the Nyroca Channel and on into the Marcollat watercourse.


Cockatoo Lake, north side

Northen side of Cockatoo Lake

Cockatoo Lake is considered an important birdlife habitat and recreational resource. In a recent quick visit to the site there was up to a dozen families camping on the grass on the eastern side of the lake where there are some very basic toilet facilities and a boat ramp. There is another entrance on the south west side off the Deepwater Road, but this track is rather rutted from winter traffic.


In 2001 this area including the lake, Morambro Creek and 30km of the Nyroca Channel were prescribed as a protected water course.


Use this link for a map to Cockatoo Lake, South East South Australia

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Fairview Conservation Park

Fairvew Conservation Park

Fairview Conservation Park entrance, showing typical scrub type in the park.

Our eldest son and I visited Fairview Conservation Park in July 2016; for me it was my second visit to this park. It is situated approximately 45km north west of Naracoorte off the Woolumbool Road. If travelling in the vicinity of this park one needs to keep a keen eye out for wild deer as there are a few in the area. I almost hit one in a work vehicle some years back when driving past.


Little Gums Road

On Little Gums Road.

The park consists of nearly 1,400 hectares of virgin scrub, typical of the sandier soils of the South East of South Australia. The track marked on some maps as Little Gums Road enters near the north west corner of the park and runs through the park to roughly half way up the eastern boundary. Nearly half-way along this track is an off-chute to a nice little picnic spot on some higher ground, a good spot to go for a wander from. At some stage I would like to re-visit the park and do the drive right the way through and along another side boundary.


Eucalypt in the park

Typical bigger gums (eucalypts) in the park.

Intriguing slab

Intriguing slab in Fairview Conservation Park

The park also contains some wetlands with the largest area of water  being Kangoora Lagoon. I am yet to see it with water in it but it would be quite a large area when it does fill up. As I write this blog we have just had a good wet September in the region. It would be interesting to get back out there and see if and how much water is there now. On the ridge just up from the eastern side of Kangoora Lagoon is a concrete slab that I found rather intriguing. My enquiries would suggest that it was once a shed with a wash down bay in front of it. It would be rather interesting to know its history and purpose.


Not being too sure just where we would end up we re-traced the track back to the original entry point to the park. I  have since checked out the park on Google Maps and it would appear that during a dry period might be best time to do a drive right through the area.


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