Activities at Emigrant Creek Dam

Picnic spots

There are a few picnic spots near Emigrant Creek Dam that are accessible from the carpark.

  • At the very end of Killen Falls Road, there is a flat grassy area with space for the kids to run around and places to spread a picnic rug.
  • At the top of the Water Walk, near the lookout over the dam, there are picnic tables under the shade of the newly grown rainforest. For the more adventurous, take the 500m Boodgeragah Walk down Emigrant Creek and picnic at the base of Killen Falls.

Short walks

There are two beautiful walks accessible from the Emigrant Creek Dam carpark.

  • The Water Walk
    200m wheelchair-accessible educational trail that takes you from the carpark, through recently replanted rainforest, to a lookout over the dam. The tall and shady rainforest trees that you walk through were planted in 2003.
  • The Boodgeragah Walk
    About 500m.
    Takes you through regenerating rainforest along Emigrant Creek, downstream of the dam, to Killen Falls. This is a very special place and has one of the remaining stands of intact Big Scrub rainforest in this area. Boodgeragah is the Wi-abul word for fig-tree and on this walk, you will find an ancient fig tree guarding the base of these spectacular falls. The track is quite rough, especially compared with the Water Walk, so please take care.

    For a map of the Water Walk and Boodgeragah Walk, download the information sheet, Welcome to the Water Walk.

The Catchment Loop Drive at Emigrant Creek

This pleasant scenic drive around Emigrant Creek Dam catchment area takes you through cattle pastures, macadamia farms, beside creeks and through patches of forest, and the village of Newrybar. 

From the carpark, return along Killen Falls Road and take a right at Friday Hut Road, which passes the dam, then the Water Treatment Plant on your right, followed by Emigrant Creek itself for about a kilometre. You will then pass through several macadamia farms and some cattle pastures before you reach a crossroad, where you can turn right into Brooklet Road, which takes you into the village of Newrybar. You are now on the outer rim of the catchment area. Turn left at the Pacific Highway and then very soon take the next right into Broken Head Road, which takes you around the upper catchment of Emigrant Creek. Turn right at Old Byron Bay Road, which takes you down the eastern rim of the upper catchment back to the Pacific Highway. From there you can turn left down the Pacific Highway (past Knockrow Reservoir) and follow the directions back to Emigrant Creek Dam or drive home.

For a map of the catchment, download the information sheet, Emigrant Creek Catchment.

The Water Walk

This gently-sloping 200m walk winds its way from the carpark up through recently replanted rainforest to a lookout over the dam. On the way, you will discover new things about your place in the water cycle and what you can do to help care for our shared water supply.

You can learn about these things by reading the colourful signs, complete with illustrations, photos and messages from the forest creatures. Each sign has a matching information sheet that you can take along on your walk to get a deeper understanding of each topic. You can download them here.

The Water Walk Guide: Emigrant Creek Dam

This beautifully photographed and illustrated book is an important source of information about our place in the water cycle. It is also a guide to the Water Walk at Emigrant Creek Dam, including educational experiences for your head, heart and hands. 96 pages. Available free from the Rous County Council office in Lismore.

Njabai (Water): A Widjabul Creation Story

A traditional story told by Aboriginal custodians of our water catchments about the importance of water to all living things. Illustrated with Widjabul and other artwork, and historical photographs. This story is told in English and Bundjalung Nation dialect. 20 pages. Available free from the Rous County Council office in Lismore.