Jindabyne Kayaking: Lake Jindabyne

I’ve been craving mountains ever since Nigel’s summer mountaineering trip in New Zealand. With prohibitive prices for last minute flights in the school holidays, I instead opted to spend the Australia Day long weekend in Australia’s mountain capital – the Snowy Mountains.

While not quite a substitute for the New Zealand southern alps, the Snowy Mountain region does offer a great array of walking, climbing and other outdoor activities in summer.

We are staying in Jindabyne – a lovely small town on the shores of Lake Jindabyne that is celebrating 50 years since it was relocated due to impacts of the Snowy Mountains Hydro Scheme. Today Jindabyne is a thriving tourist town with a population of about 1700 that swells during the winter ski season. The town has a lovely feel and with it’s lakeside setting is about as close to New Zealand’s Wanaka as I’ve experienced this side of the Tasman.

This morning I woke early to kangaroos on the lawn outside our accommodation at the Bungarra Alpine Centre where friends have kindly put me up for the weekend.


I took advantage of the still morning launching my kayak from the sandy beach jetty at the bottom of Barry Way on the outskirts of the town.


Lake Jindabyne is a vast expanse that you could spend the best part of a day paddling around quite easily. I opted for a loop of about 6km to get started following the bank of the lake along the town foreshore before crossing to East Jindabyne.





On the opposite side of the lake, the scenery is dominated by trees and rocky outcrops with very little man made infrastructure to interrupt which makes for peaceful paddling.



After following the shore for a period I crossed back over the lake towards town, rounded the two islands off the shore and returned to the sandy banks.






The paddling was excellent and highly recommended, although I would suggest starting early as the wind off the mountains tends to pick up during the day.


18 responses to “Jindabyne Kayaking: Lake Jindabyne

  1. It looks stunning. We’re in the middle of winter here and it’s too cold, wet and windy to do anything outside – it’s definitely too dangerous to go up in to the mountains! I’m flying to Andorra tomorrow for a week’s skiing though, so will be getting my fix of the mountains soon too. Thanks for sharing your photos, it’s great to see the different sides to Australia 🙂

  2. Ach! What a gorgeous paddle. We only wish we could tag along, instead of watching it snow outside while we deal with our miserable flu!! Thanks for letting us paddle with you vicariously. Beautiful pix 🙂 BTW, what does it mean to wake to kangaroos?? Are they noisy or something? Kick you in the head? We have no clue, no kangaroo experience whatsoever. J&A

    • Lol! Where abouts are you from? Fortunately just the pretty sight of a lawn full of kangaroos when I opened the curtains 🙂

      • Heehee. The fact that you say “a pretty sight” implies that the kangaroos weren’t knocking over your trash bins or eating your laundry. What DO they do in the a.m., and why in your garden, of all places? Seems they aren’t afraid of people. 🙂 We live in New Rochelle, NY, and spend our workdays in New York City. Our view from the 23rd floor, when we open the curtains in the morning, is of the commuter train (MetroNorth) and city, with NYC skyscrapers to the West and Bear Mountain to the North. As far as wildlife is concerned, no kangaroos immediately out the window (yet). But we’ve got these!:

      • Cool birds! On holidays in the Australian Alps and staying at a fabulous property surrounded by bush. The kangaroos are locals and come and go. They seem to have turned the grass around the house into a marsupial lawn where they graze and hangout at dawn and dusk.

      • Your kangaroos sound like our local high school kids. Different grass 🙂 Have a great time on your holidays! We look forward seeing more of your fabulous posts. Jean & Alex

  3. Pingback: Jindabyne Kayaking: Wollondibby Creek | Everyday Adventures·

  4. Oooohh you’ve just given us an idea for a weekend activity! Apart from the wind, are the waters fairly calm? Also, the area is closed off to boats right? I used to kayak around The Spit to Balmoral and there are so many boats & other water activities going on that it makes kayaking quite difficult.

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