Glenbawn DamOne of the largest rock-filled dams in Australia

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Status Open to Public

Visit the Dam

Glenbawn Dam is a popular inland sport and recreation destination near Scone, offering year-round attractions for water sports and fishing enthusiasts, nature lovers, bushwalkers, campers and picnickers. The dam has one of the largest rock-fill embankment walls in Australia, 100 metres high and 1.1 kilometres long. The main purpose of the dam is to supply water for irrigation, power generation, stock, industry and household needs in the Hunter Valley, and provide flood mitigation and environmental flows.

Look out points

Dam wall

The wall is 100 metres high and 1,125 metres long.

Lake Glenbawn State Park

The park has many vantage points with panoramic views of the lake and countryside.

Things to do

  • Stay
  • Water sports
  • Fishing

Opening hours

Dam grounds

Open 24 hours a day, all year round. Entry is free.

Lake Glenbawn State Park

Office is open 9am to 5pm daily. Phone 02 6543 7193.


Glenbawn Dam is 20 kilometres east of Scone in the NSW Hunter Valley. Scone is about 270 kilometres north-west of Sydney via the Pacific and New England highways.


  • Camping
  • Childrens playground
  • Picnic areas
  • Toilets
  • Fishing
  • Kiosk
  • Shower facilities
  • Boat ramps
  • Water sports
  • Bushwalking
  • Tennis



Restrictions are in place to protect our water supply and ensure that everyone has an enjoyable and safe visit - with penalties up to $44,000 applying:


Recreation Areas at WaterNSW dams will be closed on ALL Total Fire Ban days.

The Glenbawn Dam Experience

Things to see and do

1.       Stay

A range of powered and non-powered camping options are available on the shores of the lake along with cabins and bungalows.

2.       Water sports

The large lake offers water sports including skiing, jet skis, sailing, canoeing and swimming. Lake Glenbawn State Park has several boat ramps.

3.       Fishing 

Fishing at Lake Glenbawn includes Australian bass, Golden perch (yellow belly), silver perch, Murray cod, catfish, eel and carp.

Facts & History

Glenbawn Dam is situated on the Hunter River about 20 kilometres east of Scone in the NSW Hunter Valley. The dam is about 270 kilometres north-west of Sydney.

Glenbawn Dam has a capacity of 750,000 megalitres, one and a half times that of Sydney Harbour. It has additional potential capacity of 120,000 megalitres for flood mitigation.

Glenbawn Dam is named after a property on which it is built.

Why the dam was built

The dam was built in the 1950s to secure water for agriculture, industry and the surrounding townships, and to mitigate flooding.

Vineyards and pastures for dairy farming are the main agricultural industries supported by irrigation. The dam also provides water for nearby power stations and the towns of Scone and Muswellbrook.

Glenbawn Dam operates in conjunction with Glennies Creek Dam to supply water requirements along 40 kilometres of the Hunter River from Glenbawn to the tidal reaches near Maitland.

A six megawatt hydroelectric power station uses irrigation, flood mitigation and environmental flows.

How the dam was built

Glenbawn Dam is a rock-fill embankment with a clay core. An ungated concrete chute spillway is located about one kilometre south of the dam wall.

The original embankment was 78 metres high, providing a storage capacity of 300,000 megalitres. Construction began in 1948 and finished in 1958. The dam was enlarged in 1987.

Later improvements

Glenbawn Dam was enlarged in 1987, raising the wall to 100 metres high and increasing storage capacity to 750,000 megalitres with additional potential capacity of 120,000 megalitres for flood mitigation.

Dam Summary

Metres High
Length: 1,125 metres
749,840 ml total operating capacity
Size of lake:
26 km 2
Catchment: 1300 square kilometres

Dam Wall

Size Measurement
Length 1,125m
Thickness of base m
Width of central spillway m
Concrete mass t
Width of auxillary spillway m
Length of auxillary spillway m

Lake and Catchment

Size Measurement
Area 26km2
Length of lake km
Length of foreshores km
Maximum depth of reservoir m
Catchment area 1300km2
Annual average rainfall mm


Size Measurement
Diameter mm
Length km each
Capacity ML per day
Friday 27 November
2,375,199 ML
2,581,850 ML
11,375 ML
1,625 ML
-100,712 ML
Friday 27 November
Glenbawn Dam
Wednesday 25 November