At a Glance

  • Open 1 May to 1 November, 9am - 3.30pm on weekdays, 9am - 5pm on weekends. Closed outside this period, on Total Fire Ban Days and for operational activity (gates will be closed).
  • Car parking available
  • Fishing, permit required
  • Fees apply for fishing permits
  • Picnicking
  • Barbeque available
  • Wildlife and birdwatching
  • No dogs

Activities and facilities

Check the conditions of access ahead of your visit.


Fishing

Fishing is available from the reservoir’s shoreline with golden perch, silver perch and Murray cod to catch. To fish at Beetaloo Reservoir you need a current fishing permit. Fishing limits are detailed on PIRSA's website.


Picnic/barbeque

The sheltered picnic area with barbeque facilities is also popular.


Dogs are not welcome at reservoir reserves as they can carry harmful organisms that can easily contaminate the water and they pose a threat to local native birds and wildlife. Assistance animals are accepted.


Blue-green algae

Algae occur naturally in reservoirs and occasionally algal blooms can occur. This is more likely in the warmer months of the year, and they are not always visible.

Regular testing is undertaken as part of SA Water’s routine water quality monitoring. During a blue-green algal bloom, water treatment is adjusted to ensure the continued supply of safe, clean drinking water for customers.

Some blue-green algae produce toxins which can be harmful to humans and animals. Contact with the untreated water in the reservoir when high levels of blue-green algae are present can be harmful to your health.

When blue-green algae levels are extreme, reservoirs are closed to all activities that involve contact with the water, including fishing and kayaking/canoeing.

Signage on site will be updated and specific access and closure details are available on each reservoir page on this site.

To find out more, read SA Health’s information about blue-green algae health impacts and how to avoid illness.

Click map below for a print-friendly version.

A map showing the Betaloo Reservoir Reserve. The southern end does not allow access to the water, with fishing permitted on the eastern edge. Parking is available at the entrance, with picnic facilities alongside the walking trail before reaching the reservoir.

What sets Beetaloo Reservoir apart

Capacity: 3.2 gigalitres (one gigalitre is one billion litres), enough to fill more than 1,500 Olympic swimming pools

Constructed: 1886-1890

Beetaloo is South Australia’s smallest reservoir yet at the time it was built it was the largest concrete dam in the southern hemisphere.

That was back in the 1880s and it was built to provide a stable water supply for the Yorke Peninsula, where farmers had struggled with inconsistent rainfall and poor water quality from their local wells.

In the 1870s, typhoid outbreaks were common in Moonta, Kadina and Wallaroo. Water tanks were thought to be the solution but they became contaminated easily and didn’t hold enough water to supply the towns, so the reservoir at Beetaloo was built.

Initially designed with a single water main to provide the towns of Kadina and Wallaroo, the scope was expanded to multiple water mains across the Yorke Peninsula and up to Port Pirie. This provided a water supply to these areas in response to severe drought which occurred during construction of the reservoir.

Little known fact about Beetaloo Reservoir

The dam design and materials used were so different from other dams constructed at the time that the available machinery was not suitable and the Waterworks Department designed and built their own machinery fit for purpose to build Beetaloo.

Water quality

Beetaloo Reservoir is one of 16 across South Australia.

Treating drinking water before it’s supplied to homes, businesses, schools, hospitals and more, is important to make sure it is clean and safe to drink straight from the tap. You can learn how SA Water treats water and maintains the quality its customers value and rely upon.

Beetaloo is a contingency supply reservoir.