Floodwaters in Lake Eyre Basin – February 2024

Summer often sees heavy rainfall in northern Australia as tropical weather systems and cyclones dump sometimes metres of rain at a time on communities. When those weather systems make their way inland, some of that water ends up in the Lake Eyre basin, which extends from Lake Eyre itself right up into south-western Queensland.

In January, Tropical Cyclone Kirrily battered the north-east of Queensland before making its way inland, eventually dumping significant rainfall over western Queensland. This added to previous rainfall earlier in the summer, and much of that rainfall has begun draining south into the Lake Eyre basin.

The video below shows the progression of floodwater through the Diamantina Lakes, just north-east of Birdsville, over the past couple of weeks.

Although inconvenient, this floodwater is a godsend for the landscape and brings life back to a typically dry part of the country. As the water continues to flow south, it will spread out into several more basins like the Diamantina Lakes before eventually making its way to Lake Eyre in South Australia.

It’s very hard to predict exactly how much of this water will flow through to Lake Eyre itself, as the water must travel more than 1000km still through relatively shallow declines and in the high temperatures of summer in central Australia. However, once water does flow into Lake Eyre, it’s quite the sight to see – and the only way to really see it is from the air.

Australian Air Safaris offers several trips that visit Birdsville and Lake Eyre, including:


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