Gordon Dam Strathgordon South/ West Tasmania

A drive out to the South/ West National Park can easily be done in a day from Hobart though be prepared to drive atleast 3 hours to the end of the road at Gordon Dam. Why not break it up with a stop at Mt Field National Park Visitors Centre where you can enjoy a nice walk in the forrest to Russell Falls. if a day trip is too much there is camping options at Mt Field and along the road in the South/ West National Park. Though come prepared as there is a lack of facilities once your in the park. The last general store is about 70kms from Gordon Dam.

From Mt Field National Park to Gordon Dam its still approximately 100kms - Even though the weather was foul when I was heading down with passing showers and winds (this is the South/ West of Tasmania after all), it was a must for me to stop at Lake Pedder Lookout even though the natural light was terrible with bright white clouds fading to the left in the distance. Still a remarkable spot and one to appreciate more over a grey storm cloud rolling in or a beautiful blue sky.

Lake Pedder is only approximately 15 minutes drive from the end of the road/ Gordon Dam.


Area: 242 km²

Depth: 13 m

Location: South West Tasmania NP

Max: depth: +3 m (old depth) 43 m (new)

Owner: Hydro Tasmania

Primary Source: Serpentine River, Huon River

Lake Pedder was once a natural lake, it is now a man-made impoundment and diversion lake located in the southwest of Tasmania, Australia.

In addition to its natural catchment from the Frankland Range, the lake was formed in 1972 by the damming of the Serpentine and Huon rivers from the Hydro Electric Commission of Tasmania for hydroelectric power generation.

As a result, the flooded Lake Pedder now has a surface area of approximately 242 square kilometres and it is the largest freshwater lake in Australia

Gordon Dam -

Country: Australia

Location: South West Tasmania

Coordinates: 42°43′50″S 145°58′35″E

Purpose: Power

Status: Operational

Construction began:1974

Opening date: 1978

Owner: Hydro Tasmania


Type of dam: Arch dam

Impounds: Gordon River

Height: 140 m (459 ft)

Length: 198 m (650 ft)

Elevation at crest: 310 m above sea level

The Gordon Dam, is known as the Gordon River Dam, is a major gated curvature concrete arch dam with a controlled spillway across the Gordon River, located in South West Tasmania, Australia and the reservoir is called Lake Gordon.

Gordon dam was constructed in 1974 by the Hydro Electric Corporation of Tasmania for the intention of generating hydro-electric power via the Gordon River Power Station located below the dam wall.

In 1963, the Australian Government handed a A$5 million grant to Tasmanian Hydro-Electric to build the Gordon River Road from Maydena into the Gordon River area in the South West Wilderness region. Power operation began in 1978, a third generator was added in 1988.

The completed Gordon Dam was the only dam built on the Gordon River, The construction of Gordon Dam resulted in some flooding of the connected Lake Pedder as planned and opposition to restore Lake Pedder failed after a Parliamentary inquiry in 1995.

The dam was designed by Sergio Guidici as the chief engineer. He was also involved in the design of the Crotty Dam in the West Coast Range, one of the last dams created by Hydro Tasmania during its "dam-building era".

The dam is connected with the Gordon River Power Station, Some 183 metres (600 ft) under the surface of the switch yard.


Due to an extreme drought in 2015 and the untimely failure of the related power feed, electricity production needs had drained the lake to its minimum operating level in March 2016. The water level fell 45 meters to a record low of only six per cent capacity. After repair and record rainfalls, Lake Gordon levels had recovered to -28 meters by January 2017

THE GORDON DAM - Worlds Tallest Commercial Abseil

Abseiling at the Gordon Dam is up in the Top 10 Adrenaline activities in the world, along with rafting the Zambesi River, bungee jumping in South Africa, and the X Roller Coaster at Six Flags, California. At 140 metres high, the Gordon Dam is the world's highest commercial abseil.


Norman Herfurth

Indigo Photography

Yours In Adventure

"This Blog is of the Opinion of my own Personal Experiences and are not necessarily Fact.. and is written to the best of my knowledge, but there may be omissions, errors or mistakes. This blog is for entertainment and/or informational purposes only and shouldn’t be seen as any kind of advice."

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