King River (Victoria)

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King (Poodumbeyer[1])
The King River, above the King Valley, in 2008
Name origin: Philip Gidley King, 3rd Governor of NSW[1]
Country Australia
State Victoria
Regions Victorian Alps (IBRA), Victorian Alps, Hume
Local government areas Mansfield Shire, Wangaratta
Part of North-East Murray catchment,
Murray-Darling basin
 - left Fork Creek, Tomahawk Creek, Evans Creek (King River, Victoria), Boggy Creek
 - right Stony Creek (King River, Victoria), Black Range Creek, Meadow Creek (Victoria), Hurdle Creek
Town Moyhu, Wangaratta
Landmark King Valley
Source Alpine National Park, Victorian Alps
 - location below Mount Buggery
 - elevation 1,030 m (3,379 ft)
 - coordinates 37°9′1″S 146°36′56″E / 37.15028°S 146.61556°E / -37.15028; 146.61556
Mouth confluence with the Ovens River
 - location Wangaratta
 - elevation 142 m (466 ft)
 - coordinates 36°21′16″S 146°19′50″E / 36.35444°S 146.33056°E / -36.35444; 146.33056Coordinates: 36°21′16″S 146°19′50″E / 36.35444°S 146.33056°E / -36.35444; 146.33056
Length 126 km (78 mi)
National park Alpine National Park, Mount Buffalo National Park
Reservoir Lake William Hovell
King River (Victoria) is located in Victoria
King River (Victoria)
Location of the King River mouth in Victoria
Wikimedia Commons: King River (Victoria)

The King River, a perennial river[2] of the North-East Murray catchment of the Murray-Darling basin, is located in the alpine and Hume regions of Victoria, Australia. It flows from the northwestern slopes of the Alpine National Park in the Australian Alps, through the King Valley, and joining with the Ovens River at the rural city of Wangaratta.[3]

Location and features[edit]

The King River rises below Mount Buggery, within Mansfield Shire, at an elevation exceeding 1,460 metres (4,790 ft) above sea level. The river flows generally north by northwest, most of its course through remote parts of the Alpine and Mount Buffalo national parks, and then descending into the King Valley, joined by eight minor tributaries, before reaching its confluence with the Ovens River at Wangaratta. The river descends 1,320 metres (4,330 ft) over its 126-kilometre (78 mi) course.[3]

The river is impounded by the William Hovell Dam to form Lake William Hovell, that provides water for approximately 24 square kilometres (9.3 sq mi) for irrigated crops, vineyards and grazing properties along the King River from Cheshunt to Wangaratta.[4][5] A small 1.6-megawatt (2,100 hp) hydro-electric generator is driven by the river's outflow from the dam, with an average annual output of 3.7 gigawatt-hours (13 TJ).[5][6]


The river was named by Hamilton Hume and William Hovell, explorers of the region, in honour of Captain Philip Gidley King, the third Governor of New South Wales, in office from 1800 to 1806.[1]

In the Australian Aboriginal Waywurru language, the river is named Poodumbeyer, with no defined meaning.[1]


Kayaking enthusiasts access the river for the many level 2 and level 3 rapids. In 2008 the site for the Victorian and Australian Downriver Championships.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "King River: Historical Information". Vicnames. 12 August 2011. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "King River: 18811". Vicnames. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c "Map of King River, VIC". Bonzle Digital Atlas of Australia. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "Lake William Hovell". Goulburn-Murray Water. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Register of Large Dams in Australia" (Excel (requires download)). Dams information. Australian National Committee on Large Dams. 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  6. ^ "Victorian hydro plants". Projects: Operations. Pacific Hydro. 2011. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 

External links[edit]

Media related to King River (Victoria) at Wikimedia Commons