Serpentine Lakes

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Serpentine Lakes
Serpentine Lakes.JPG
Serpentine Lakes on the border of South Australia and Western Australia
Serpentine Lakes 0217.svg
Location South Australia and Western Australia
Coordinates 28°43′S 129°7′E / 28.717°S 129.117°E / -28.717; 129.117Coordinates: 28°43′S 129°7′E / 28.717°S 129.117°E / -28.717; 129.117
Type Salt lakes
Basin countries Australia
Designation Mamungari Conservation Park
Max. length 100 km (62 mi)
Surface area 97 km2 (37 sq mi)
Surface elevation 264 m (866 ft)

The Serpentine Lakes is a chain of salt lakes in the Great Victoria Desert of Australia. It runs for almost 100 km (62 mi) along the border between South Australia and Western Australia. When full, the lakes cover an area of 9,700 hectares (97 km2). Most of it is located in the Mamungari Conservation Park. The Anne Beadell Highway crosses the northernmost arm of the lake.

The Serpentine Lakes are considered an important wetlands area. They form part of a major palaeo-drainage system, a now-inactive drainage system from the Palaeozoic era.[1][2] The surface of the lake normally consists of dry clay, silt and sand, and is covered with a salty crust. The sediment is mostly quartz arenite. The lakes form the main channel of the palaeo-drainage system. Other channels are covered by sand dunes and are not well defined.[3] The surface elevation is 264 m (866 ft) above mean sea-level.[4]

Tektites high in magnesium have been found in these lakes.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Rangelands - Overview". Australian Natural Resources Atlas. Australian Government, Department of Sustainabililty, Environment, Water, Population and Communities. 2001–2002. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  2. ^ "Maralinga hand-over prompts celebration". The Age. Melbourne: The Age Company Ltd. Australian Associated Press. 25 August 2004.
  3. ^ Mamungari Conservation Park Board of Management (2011). "Mamungari Conservation Park Management Plan 2011" (PDF). Adelaide: Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  4. ^ Geoscience Australia elevation data portal
  5. ^ Gerald J. H. MacCall (2001). Tektites in the Geological Record: Showers of Glass from the Sky. Geological Society. p. 48. ISBN 9781862390850.