Condamine River

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Condamine R.JPG
Condamine River, Warwick, 2009
Name origin: In honour of Thomas de la Condamine
Country Australia
State Queensland
Regions Darling Downs, South West Queensland
Part of Balonne catchment,
Murray-Darling basin
 - left Sandy Creek (Condamine River), Wilkie Creek, Wambo Creek, Undulla Creek
 - right Emu Creek (Condamine River), Swan Creek (Condamine River), Glengallen Creek, Dalrymple Creek, Kings Creek (Condamine River), Hodgson Creek, Oakey Creek, Myall Creek, Jimbour Creek, Cooranga Creek, Charleys Creek
Settlements Killarney, Warwick
Source Mount Superbus
 - location below The Head, near Main Range National Park
 - elevation 772 m (2,533 ft)
 - coordinates 28°14′42″S 152°28′21″E / 28.24500°S 152.47250°E / -28.24500; 152.47250
Mouth confluence with the Dogwood Creek to form the Balonne River
 - location between Surat and Condamine
 - elevation 256 m (840 ft)
 - coordinates 27°03′20″S 149°37′37″E / 27.05556°S 149.62694°E / -27.05556; 149.62694Coordinates: 27°03′20″S 149°37′37″E / 27.05556°S 149.62694°E / -27.05556; 149.62694
Length 657 km (408 mi)
Basin 13,292 km2 (5,132 sq mi)
Reservoirs and weirs Talgai Weir, Yarramalong Weir, Lemon Tree Weir, Loudoun Weir, Tipton Weir, Cecil Plains Weir
Location of Condamine River mouth in Queensland
Wikimedia Commons: Condamine River

The Condamine River, part of the Balonne catchment that is part of the Murray-Darling Basin, drains the northern portion of the Darling Downs, an area of sub-coastal southern Queensland, Australia. The river rises on Mount Superbus, South East Queensland's highest peak, on the western slopes of the Great Dividing Range, approximately 100 kilometres (62 mi) from the east coast of Queensland, and then flows north west across the Darling Downs, then west.[2]

Course and features[edit]

The headwaters of the river rise on the slopes of Mount Superbus, part of the Main Range, before passing through Cambanoora Gorge. The river flows through the towns of Killarney and Warwick, while the tributary Gowrie Creek drains the slopes around Toowoomba. At Surat the Condamine turns to the south-west and becomes known as the Balonne River.[3] The Condamine descends 516 metres (1,693 ft) over its 657-kilometre (408 mi) course,[1] with a catchment area of 13,292 square kilometres (5,132 sq mi).[4]

The Balonne River forks near Dirranbandi with a western branch being called the Culgoa River which, in turn, flows into the Darling River. The eastern branch of the Balonne River in turn branches again - into the Bokhara River on the right and the Narran River on the left (eastern) side. These rivers join with the Barwon River west of Brewarrina which also flows into the Darling River. Towns the Balonne passes through include St George, Dirranbandi and Surat. In this area Bungil Creek joins the Balonne River.[2]

Water storage[edit]

Water from the Condamine River is used for town water supply and for irrigation. Leslie Dam on Sandy Creek, a tributary of the Condamine, is the main water reservoir for Warwick. Talgai Weir is a small weir that can hold 640 megalitres (140×10^6 imp gal; 170×10^6 US gal) near Clifton.[3] Other water storage facilities on the Condamine River include the Yarramalong Weir, Lemon Tree Weir, Loudoun Weir, Tipton Weir and the Cecil Plains Weir. The Condamine River is reduced to a series of drying ponds during droughts in Australia.


The Condamine River was named by Allan Cunningham in 1827 for Thomas de la Condamine, a former aide-de-camp to Governor Ralph Darling who became the colony's first Collector of Internal Revenue. Patrick Leslie was the first white settler in the area. He established Canning Downs in 1840, near Warwick.

Major Thomas Mitchell crossed the Balonne River on St George's Day, 23 April 1846. The next year 1847 Ludwig Leichhardt went to examine the course of the Condamine River.

The Condamine River and its catchment area were involved in the 2010–2011 Queensland floods. During the floods the river reached a record peak at Condamine of 15.25 metres (50.0 ft) and another peak of 14.67 metres (48.1 ft).[5]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Map of Condamine River, QLD". Bonzle Digital Atlas of Australia. Retrieved 10 February 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Shaw, John H., Collins Australian Encyclopedia, Collins, Sydney, 1984, ISBN 0-00-217315-8
  3. ^ a b Harrison, Rod; Ernie James; Chris Sully; Bill Classon; Joy Eckermann (2008). Queensland Dams. Bayswater, Victoria: Australian Fishing Network. p. 154. ISBN 978-1-86513-134-4. 
  4. ^ "State of the Rivers report: Condamine River". Department of Environment and Resource Management. 28 September 2009. Retrieved 1 June 2012. 
  5. ^ "Flood Warning System for the Condamine River to Cotswold". Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Condamine River at Wikimedia Commons