DESTINATIONS - TRAVEL DESTINATIONS
In response to requests for info on water-based camping venues we’ve checked out some inland waterways in Queensland. More coming in 2021.
Many Outback Travel Australia website visitors take boats or canoes with them on their travels, so we’re looking at different options for these people. We started in Queensland, where there’s a more enlightened attitude to inland waterway boating and fishing than there is in some other states.
We’re not going to get into the fine details of fishing, because there’s already an excellent website, Sweetwater Fishing (http://www.sweetwaterfishing.com.au) that has those aspects very well covered.
Our travels so far took us to South East Queensland, where we visited Lake Somerset, Lake Barambah and Lake Boondoomah.
Lake Somerset (Somerset Dam) is one of Australia’s most popular freshwater fishing and camping destinations, registering in the top five most visited.
However this man-made lake covers 4210 hectares and reaches 55km upstream, so there’s plenty of casting room!
As part of Brisbane’s water supply its contents can flow into Lake Wivenhoe as required, and, in turn, flow into the Brisbane River.
Lake Somerset and Lake Wivenhoe are probably the most consistent big bass and golden perch lakes with reasonable access in Queensland.
Camping was excellent, on high ground among the trees, with easy access to a large boat ramp and some random shale beach spots. Facilities at the camping area were excellent.
Construction of Bjelke-Petersen Dam began in 1984 and finished in 1988, creating the lake that was named ‘Barambah’ after the original pastoral property in the region.
The water surface of Lake Barambah is 2150 hectares.
Once overshadowed by Lake Somerset and Lake Wivenhoe, Lake Barambah is now regarded as one of the big bass impoundments in Queensland.
We focussed on lazy-person ‘fishing’, dropping pots in the afternoon and checking the traps for red claw every morning. We did OK, thank you.
There are two boat ramps: one adjacent to the dam wall and another immediately below the camping area.
Camping was excellent, with very good facilities.
Located some 20km north-west of Proston and 75km from Kingaroy, Boondooma Dam is a pleasant three and a half hour drive north-west of Brisbane.
Boondooma Dam was constructed in 1983 to supply water to the Tarong power station and takes its name from the original property in the area.
It has 1920 hectares of surface area and has an average depth of 11meters.
There are normally no boating restrictions on Lake Boondooma, but there is a no fishing and no boating zone around the dam wall.
With our lightweight Hobie Tandem Island trimaran in tow we were able to camp a short distance from the water’s edge and leave the boat pulled up on the beach. However, this was in winter, when there were few campers around.
For fishing info on these and many others Australia-wide, get onto the Sweetwater Fishing website.