Dry sandy riverbed.

Paroo River

Note, there have been no known trips. Everything is based on water gauge flows and topo maps only.

If you have any additional information, let me know!

Dry riverbed

The Paroo River, located in southwestern Queensland, is one of Australia's most unique river systems due to its ephemeral nature. Originating west of Charleville, the Paroo River flows down to the Darling River, which is just upstream of Wilcannia in New South Wales. Unlike other rivers, the Paroo River only flows during rare wet seasons brought on by la Niña weather patterns or cyclone-driven events. In other times, the riverbed is often dry, with only the occasional waterhole providing a source of water for local flora and fauna. Despite its intermittent nature, the Paroo River supports a diverse range of plant and animal species, including several rare and endangered species that have adapted to the region's unique conditions.

Key Waypoints

  • 0 km


    Elevation 367 m
    Coordinates 26° 6' 48.2" S, 145° 5' 58.2" E

    Source is at the edge of Mariala National Park.

  • 70 km

    Diamantina Developmental Rd

    Distance between locations 70.3 km Elevation 260 m Slope 1.52‰
    Coordinates 26° 38' 57.8" S, 145° 17' 23.3" E

    Cheepie, an old railway station and post-office (30 km west). Cooladdi, Australia's smallest town with a single road-house and three residents (18 km east).

    Dry creek bed Google Street View

  • 258 km


    Distance between locations 187.9 km Elevation 156 m Slope 0.55‰
    Coordinates 28° 9' 40.0" S, 145° 2' 12.5" E
    Population 75 General Store

    Eulo has one pub and a small general store. Known for its opal mining and lizard racing.

    The Eulo Weather station closed in 2001 (older climate stats).

    Dirty water behind a small dam Google Street View

  • 380 km

    Hungerford, QLD

    Distance between locations 121.5 km Elevation 129 m Slope 0.22‰
    Coordinates 28° 59' 8.9" S, 144° 24' 30.6" E
    Population 20
    Gauge: Caiwarro, QLD WMIP; BoM

    Small outback town right on the border, with the majority living on the QLD side.

  • 486 km

    Wanaaring, NSW

    Distance between locations 106.7 km Elevation 108 m Slope 0.20‰
    Coordinates 29° 41' 50.3" S, 144° 9' 34.9" E
    Population 140 General Store

    Small town midway along the "Cut Line" road between Bourke and Tibooburra.

  • 786 km

    Darling River Confluence

    Distance between locations 300.0 km Elevation 72 m Slope 0.12‰
    Coordinates 31° 29' 43.4" S, 143° 33' 43.2" E
  • 836 km


    Distance between locations 271 km Elevation 66 m Slope 0.12‰
    Coordinates 31° 33' 35.6" S, 143° 22' 46.3" E
    Population 549 General Store Climate
    Gauge: Wilcannia Main Channel, BoM; WaterNSW
    Flood: minor: 9 m, moderate: 9.7 m, major: 10.4 m
    Flow: no flow: -0.19 m

    An IGA in town (the Friendly Grocer 08 8091 5989). There are apparently petty crime issues so keep a watch on your gear. (RK).

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River Map

Key towns along the river are shown below.

  • Source (Mariala Nat. Park)
  • Cheepie / Cooladdi
  • Eulo
  • Hungerford
  • Wanaaring
  • Darling River Confluence
  • Wilcannia

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Distance Table

The distances were calculated by manually digitising the river path from Bing aerial images in QGIS (WGS 84 / UTM Zone 55S).

Distances (KM)
Diamantina Rd
Darling River
Distances (KM)
Source 0 70 258 380 486 786 836 Source
Diamantina Rd 70 0 188 309 416 716 766 Diamantina Rd
Eulo 258 188 0 121 228 528 578 Eulo
Hungerford 380 309 121 0 107 407 456 Hungerford
Wanaaring 486 416 228 107 0 300 349 Wanaaring
Darling River 786 716 528 407 300 0 49 Darling River
Wilcannia 836 766 578 456 349 49 0 Wilcannia
Distances (KM)
Diamantina Rd
Darling River
Distances (KM)

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There wasn't that much data on the river, but enough to do some basic analysis of the recent flow events. Some key observations:


The gauge is in Currawinya National Park about ~15 km north of the QLD-NSW border, about half way down the river.

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A couple graphs on the weather at Wanaaring, the only station with reasonable data on the Paroo.

Refer to the Darling climate page for details on Wilcannia and the Warrego climate page that would provide a good indication of what the Paroo will be like.

For the most accurate weather information that reflects recent weather patterns, I have used a 30-year period between 1991 and 2020 for my statistics whenever possible. In some cases, a smaller subset or even longer-term statistics may also be used. To provide normalized figures that exclude extreme values, I have used deciles ranging from 1 to 9, which excludes the lowest and highest 10% of observations.

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There are no known public transport options. The closest buses are to Cunnamulla (Murrays) and Charleville (Greyhound).


Some of the stations and homesteads that can be found along the river.

38 km Boothulla
65 km Arranfield
71 km Chums Plain, Yalamurra
79 km Dempsey
89 km Yarronvale
99 km Coolabah
107 km Allambie
140 km Mount Alfred
145 km Brigalow
156 km Come By Chance
161 km Nooma
168 km Humeburn
182 km Boobera
220 km Tilbooroo
242 km Farnham Plains
276 km Wandilla
328 km Caiwarro
339 km Warden
406 km Talyealye
421 km Glenhope, Willara Crossing
Terramia Homestead is directly opposite (east) about 1 km east.
442 km Mooleyarrah
One of a cluster including: Yarrawonga, Backwood, Moorland Downs and Tinapagee.
467 km Lenroy
498 km Ularara
506 km Nocoleche
528 km Taltowera
571 km Goorimpa
On Parro Overflow
612 km Tongo
West up Tongo Ck
726 km Ulalie
2 km east of the river
748 km Tillenbury

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