Thomson Dam, Victoria

The Thomson Dam has been supplying Melbourne with drinking water since 1983.
The northern reaches of the Thomson Dam, Victoria
View of the northern reaches of the Thomson Dam looking out over the Great Dividing Range

The Thomson Dam was completed in 1983 and is the largest dam in the state of Victoria, Australia. It was built to supply a reliable water supply for Melbourne (now with a population of over 5 million). The dam is located on the Thomson River in a secluded part of the Eastern Victorian Alps (part of the Great Dividing Range that runs down the East coast of Australia).

The Thomson Dam, Victoria taken from the dam wall
Looking north over the Thomson Dam, Victoria. Image taken from the dam wall

Where in the world are we?

We had spent a couple of days at the Star Hotel in Walhalla with friends. We decided we would drive them up over the Great Dividing Range and return to Melbourne through Marysville. 

We have driven north from Walhalla before but it’s a terrible, windy, narrow road, so this time we went around through Rawson and across the Thomson Dam wall. 

The road from Rawson was built as part of the dam construction and is easy travelling to the base of the dam. 

If you have just come to see the dam, it is worthwhile travelling further up towards Aberfeldy until you get to the lookout at Cast Iron Point where you can vew the northern reaches of the dam. 

The Thomson Dam taken from the Cast Iron Point lookout
The view of Thomson Dam from the Cast Iron Point lookout

Cast Iron Point is so named as it was a collection point of all the old mine machinery from around the area during the first world war. The old machinery was taken back to Melbourne, melted down and used to make gun barrels, explosive devices and other instruments of war.

The road from Cast Iron Point lookout through Aberfeldy and on to Marysville is dirt and narrow. It’s not well signposted but if you stay on the main track you’ll get to Matlock on top of the range (where there is a shelter shed and toilet facilities) and it’s plain sailing from there. 

Walhalla showing the Star Hotel on the right and the band rotunda on the left
Walhalla showing the Star Hotel on the right and the band rotunda on the left
Walhalla Goldfields Railway bridge over the Thomson River
Walhalla Goldfields Railway bridge over the Thomson River

Although these secluded waters may look inviting, because the Thomson Dam is part of Melbourne's drinking water supply, you can't swim, boat or fish in the dam.

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1 year ago

Hi Richard very nice production and thanks for the memories – john

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