Lostock Dam Enjoy this peaceful small lake in the Hunter

Lostock Dam
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Visit the Dam


  • Camping
  • Children's playground
  • Picnic areas
  • Toilets
  • Fishing
  • Kiosk
  • Shower facilities
  • Boat ramps
  • Water sports
  • Bushwalking

Lostock Dam is a popular inland sport and recreation destination north-west of Maitland, offering year-round attractions for water sports and fishing enthusiasts, nature lovers, bushwalkers, campers and picnickers. Lostock Dam supplies water for irrigation, environmental flows, stock, industry and household needs in the Paterson Valley.

Look out points

Dam wall

Walk or drive across the dam wall for views of the lake and rolling countryside. The wall is 38 metres high and 701 metres long.

Lake foreshores

The foreshores provide many vantage points with panoramic views of the lake and Mount Royal Range.

Things to do

  • Camp
  • Water sports
  • Fishing

Opening hours

Dam grounds

Open 24 hours a day, all year round. Lostock Caravan Park 02 4931 7118.


View in Maps

Lostock Dam is about 65 kilometres north of Singleton and about 65 kilometres north-west of Maitland in the NSW Hunter Valley. The dam is about 225 kilometres north-west of Sydney via the Pacific and New England highways and Gresford Road.


  • Camping
  • Children's playground
  • Picnic areas
  • Toilets
  • Fishing
  • Kiosk
  • Shower facilities
  • Boat ramps
  • Water sports
  • Bushwalking



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:

  • No model aircraft or drones

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

The Lostock Experience

1. Camp

Camping is available at a nearby caravan park with powered and unpowered sites on the banks of the Paterson River just downstream from the dam wall. Facilities include barbecues, picnic shelters, kiosk, showers and toilets. The lake foreshores are perfect for picnics, bushwalking and spotting local wildlife.

2. Water sports

Water sports include sailing, canoeing, kayaking and swimming. A boat ramp is located near the dam wall. There is a speed limit to prevent water skiing and fast power boating on the relatively small lake.

3. Fishing

The lake is stocked with Australian bass. Catfish, eel and carp are also caught.

Dam Summary

Metres High
Length: 701 metres
Size of lake:
2 km 2
20.2 gl total operating capacity
Catchment: 277 square kilometres

Facts & History

Lostock Dam is situated on the Paterson River, a major tributary of the Hunter River, about 65 kilometres north of Singleton and about 65 kilometres north-west of Maitland in the NSW Hunter Valley. The dam is about 225 kilometres north-west of Sydney.

Lostock Dam has a capacity of 20,200 megalitres, making it one of the smaller NSW water storages.

The dam is named after the town of Lostock which lies about 2 kilometres downstream.

Why the dam was built

Lostock Dam was built in the early 1970s to provide a reliable supply of water for agriculture in the Paterson Valley following the drought of 1964-66.

Dairying, cattle grazing and vegetables are the main agricultural industries supported by irrigation. Lostock Dam also provides water for town supplies, industry, domestic and stock use along the Paterson River, as well as environmental flows.

The dam’s small 277 square kilometre catchment includes farming country in the upper reaches of the Paterson River, and areas of state forest and national park in the Mount Royal Range.

How the dam was built

Lostock Dam is a rock-fill embankment with a clay core. A concrete-lined flip bucket spillway is located just west of the dam wall. The wall is 701 metres long and 38 metres high.

To prevent water leaking through cracks in the rock foundation of the dam wall, holes up to 27 metres deep were drilled into the foundation and filled with a mixture of cement and water pumped in under pressure.

Construction began in 1969 and finished in 1971.

Later improvements

In 2010 mini hydro-electric power facilities were installed that generate on irrigation and environmental flows.


In consultation with our stakeholders and the community we review and update these notifications.

To receive Early Warning Network notifications below please register your details with us.

To see past notifications, please visit all dam notifications.

High regulated release notifications

High regulated releases are when our operations may impact landholders immediately downstream or we are releasing higher than normal flows.

Normal operations

  • Range - 0 to 450 megalitres per day.
  • Notification - No notifications in this range.

Increased flows

  • Trigger - When flow increases above 450 megalitres per day.
  • Notification - Releases are planned to increase from XX megalitres per day (ML/day) to YY ML/day at 00:00 on DD/MM/YY.

Flood notifications

Flood notifications indicate the dam is releasing controlled or uncontrolled flows, likely to cause downstream flooding.

Spillway operating

  • Trigger - spillway has commenced releasing uncontrolled* flows.
  • Notification - spillway has commenced releasing uncontrolled* flows.

Flood operations

  • Trigger - Flow increases of 8,000, 17,000, 20,000 and 40,000 megalitres per day .
  • Notification - Flows of XX,000 megalitres per day are being passed.

Evacuate caravan park

  • Trigger - Spillway flows (uncontrolled*) sufficient to flood caravan park.
  • Notification - Flows  XX,000 megalitres per day are being passed, sufficient to flood caravan park, evacuation required.

Flood of record

  • Trigger - Spillway flows (uncontrolled*) over 90,000 megalitres per day, flood of record levels.
  • Notification - Flows of over 90,000 megalitres per day are being passed, flood of record levels.

* refers to automatic spillway flows at un-gated dams once storage capacity exceeds 100%

Dam safety notifications

Alerts will be issued in the following unlikely events:

  • When there is a reasonable possibility of dam failure.
  • State Emergency Service (SES) require advance public warning to evacuate if such a failure may occur.

Amber alert

  • Trigger - Storage level has reached amber alert Level, approximate outflows of outflow of 183,000 megalitres per day.
  • Notification - You are advised to move to higher ground and if necessary evacuate.

Red alert

  • Trigger - Storage level has reached  design flood level, approximate outflows of outflow of 247,100 megalitres per day
  • Notification - Residents are advised to evacuate to their designated flood assembly points.

More information

Bureau of Meteorology Weather forecasts and warnings BOM varies by region
NSW State Emergency Service Flood or severe weather warnings/advice NSW SES 132 500
NSW Water Information Storage levels and river heights Water info N/A
WaterNSW Algae Hotline Algal alert details and algae levels WaterNSW 1800 999 457
Early Warning Network To view or edit your registration details EWN 1300 662 077


Tuesday 17 May
2,573,926 ML
2,581,850 ML
9,342 ML
1,335 ML
50,768 ML
Tuesday 17 May
Lostock Dam
Tuesday 17 May