Other things about the Darling River and surrounding area
One of the least concerning looking hazards is actually one of the most lethal dangers that you are likely to encounter on the Darling. Unlike most of the weirs in populated centres, the weirs are usually unmarked, especially in the more remote rivers. In the right conditions some weirs can be hard to see from a distance, stay alert.
The dangers posed by a weir are very dependent on the flow. With no flow it is just a hassle to portage over it. With very high flows it may be fully submerged and may not even create a ripple. However, with the right flow many of the weirs can create a perfect hydraulic across the structure that even the most experienced paddler may not be able to escape.
There is only one way to safely navigate a flowing weir, to portage around it. The current can be deceptively strong near the weir, so stay close to the river bank and exit well before the weir. Below the weir wall there will likely be a strong upstream current going back towards the weir as the eddy flow is recirculating back. Finish your portage below well below these currents.
All weirs have been pieced together from misc sources. Some have not been confirmed as I either paddled in high flow or haven't been to some of the areas yet like the upper Barwon River.
Above Warwick there are a dozen or more weirs and crossings. One road crossing had a particularly nasty drop onto shallow rocks. I didn't record those locations.
Over the entire lengths of the Condamine, Balonne and Culgoa Rivers, none of the weirs had any warning signs in the water other than an old warning buoy seen at Talgai Weir and a buoy line at the Chinchilla Weir. Most NSW weirs on the Barwon and Darling from Walgett had an upstream sign that was often easily overlooked, and only a few had warning buoys in the river.
The following is a work in progress collecting up information about the main non-natural hazards on the system. This only includes features that cause a drop of at least 10 cm that I noticed and remembered to record the location as I passed by.
|East St Weir||Weir|
|Queens Park Weir||Weir|
|Loose Stone Weir||Weir|
|Lemon Tree Weir||Weir|
|Control or Small Weir||Control|
|Cecil Plains Weir||Weir|
|Loudoun Br Weir||Weir|
|Crossing with control||Crossing|
|E.J. Beardmore Dam||Dam|
|Jack Taylor Weir||Weir|
|Whyenbah Weir||Weir||Weir near the head of the Culgoa. Todo: check name and position.|
|Goodooga Weir||Weir||Todo: check name and position.|
|Weilmoringle Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Walgett Weir||Weir||Only just submerged.|
|Brewarrina (#15) Weir||Weir||Almost submerged.|
|Bourke Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Bourke (#19A) Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Louth Upstream (#20A) Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Louth Downstream (#21) Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Tilpa Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Wilcannia Weir||Weir||Fully submerged as I paddled past.|
|Main Weir||Weir||I portaged via the left, albeit there could be a boat ramp on the right. Todo check images|
|Weir 32 Weir||Weir|
|Old Control||Control||Old control or weir built on shallow rocks (S33° 32.695' E142° 30.108')|
Many of the major weirs in the upper Darling basin are show in the map below: