Along the way from Cairns to the Atherton Tablelands, there is a volcanic lake, Lake Eacham, embedded in the rainforest. The turquoise blue waters and the pleasant natural surroundings make Crater Lake National Park a popular leisure destination for locals and tourists alike.
Lake Barrine and Lake Eacham comprise the Crater Lakes National Park; these separate sections are clear, blue crater lakes surrounded by cool rainforest. Lake Barrine is a treasure trove of plants, and Lake Eacham offers swimming, birdwatching, picnic areas, and shady walking tracks.
Lake Barrine is about 60km or just over 1 hour's drive up the Gillies Range from Cairns. The turn-off to Lake Eacham is a further 8km along the Gillies Range. The clean lake water and picturesque scenery also endow Echam Lake with the effect of relaxation and healing. You will learn more interesting facts about Lake Eacham in this post.
Introduction of Lake Eacham
Located on the Atherton Plateau in Queensland, Australia, Lake Eacham is a popular volcanic lake located in the Queensland Rainforest Belt on the World Heritage List. Viewed from the air, it looks like a sapphire perfectly set in the ground. The lake water is crystal clear, and even the roots of ancient trees on land can be seen clearly. People can enjoy boating, stand-up paddling, and other water activities on this expansive lake, or sunbathe and have a picnic with family and friends on the shore.
Lake Eacham formed from lava magma about 12,000 years ago. Magma rises from the core to the surface, heating the groundwater; steam from the boiling water is trapped in the ground until a massive eruption. Huge cracks appeared in the ground, and the trees that once covered the hillside were leveled and burned. Over hundreds of years, the water gradually filled the crater, and the trees grew again, forming today's calm lake.
It is an enclosed catchment, isolated from any other waterways. Lake Eacham only fills with rain; no streams flow into or out, making the lake crystal clear and water quality good enough to snorkel and dive in. Water is lost only through infiltration and evaporation, and the water level can fluctuate up to 4 meters between wet and dry seasons.
Lake Eacham Size
Lake Eacham is an ancient volcanic crater; it covers a surface area of about 429,582.77 square meters (4,623,990.5 sq ft) and has an average depth of 65 meters. A 3-kilometer walking track is encircling the lake, surrounded by dense rainforest.
The lake area is renowned for birdwatching, which is not surprising given that more than 180 species have been recorded, and there are numerous places to take in the stunning scenery around the 50ha lake circumference. Unfortunately for the small species, other larger fish were introduced into this closed system, and eventually, these larger fish ate the Lake Eacham rainbowfish into extinction. In addition to the rainbowfish, Lake Eacham has two native fish species: The gudgeon Mogurnda adspersa and the hardyhead Craterocephalus stercusmuscarum. Other fish in the lake are non-native human introductions.
The clear blue and green waters make Lake Eacham a must-visit-place on a sweltering summer's day, and with motored craft banned, it is a serene and pristine beauty spot on the Atherton Tablelands all year round. For those who don't want a dip or swim, viewing platforms give a better look at this breathtaking lake and its inhabitants, including fish and turtles. The tiny fish have been known to give visitors the spa treatment, nibbling at feet.