Lake Argyle, Australia
Kimberley Photo Gallery

Lake Argyle in Western Australia will likely be your first stop in the Kimberley if you are travelling from Darwin/Katherine (and your last stop coming from Broome...).

The huge man made lake is near the border between the Kimberley and the Northern Territory, a good stopover on the way to Kununurra.

Alternatively you could always visit in a day trip from Kununurra. It's not far and it's a beautiful drive. I drag all my visitors up there...

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 1

View over the lake from one of the lookouts
Lake Argyle

To appreciate the dimensions of the lake you would need to take a scenic flight. Any photos taken while driving will only show a tiny part of it.

Lake Argyle covers an area 18 times the size of Sydney harbour, 1000 km2. At full flood level that area icreases to 2100 km2!

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 2

Spillway Creek
Spillway Creek

One of the unusual features of this dam is the fact that its overflow, called Spillway, is not situated at the dam itself, but at the northern end of Pannikin Bay. From there the water makes its way along Spillway Creek back into the Ord River.

This photo was taken on the way to the lake, standing under the bridge that goes over the creek. It's the end of the dry season and there isn't much water left...

The picture also gives you a glimpse of the hills that make this drive so interesting. This is a country of mostly flat and straight roads, which makes the drive to the lake all the more remarkable.

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 3

The Ord Dam
The Main Ord Dam

Here you see the Main Ord Dam, an earth filled dam with an impervious clay core. The road crosses the dam and then leads down to a well maintained grassy picnic area at the bottom of it.

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 4

The Ord River below the Argyle dam
The Ord River below the main dam

This picture was taken from the top of the dam.

You can't see the picnic area. It's under the trees on the left of the river. But what you can see really well here are the hills I mentioned above. This is the kind of country you are driving through to get to the lake. Red, red hills, narrow valleys, and the occasional glimpse of the lake as you get closer...

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 5

A photo stop
Stopping on top of the dam to take photos

And here we are in the same spot, but looking into the other direction, over the lake. The bottom of the dam was already in the shadows, but the hills on the other side are still lit up by the evening sun.

Lake Argyle Australia Pictures 6

Sunset over the lake
A sunset over Lake Argyle

I'm always a bit late getting here. I really love the drive itself, and try to catch the best light for that part of the trip.

But if this is your first visit to Lake Argyle I would recommend you go early, have a good look around, visit the museum, catch one of the cruises, and enjoy the late afternoon sun in the hills on the drive back.

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