At a Glance

  • Open 7.30am - 5pm (standard time), 7.30am - 8pm (daylight saving time). Closed on Total Fire Ban Days and for operational activity (gates will be closed).
  • Car parking
  • Fishing - permit required
  • Walking/running
  • Cycling
  • Picnicking
  • Lookout
  • Wildlife and birdwatching
  • Kayaking/canoeing
  • No dogs

Activities and facilities

To prepare for your visit, please check the conditions of access.


Fishing

With a fishing permit, you can drop a line in the from the shoreline in the reserve's public area or on the water from a canoe or kayak.


Walking/running/hiking

Explore Myponga’s 10.5km of unsealed trails, suitable for walking, running and hiking.

The 3.3km south-eastern loop track takes you through open plains, forested areas and native vegetation. The easy, unsealed trail is suitable for families with children, and for walking and running.

The 3km western loop is a Grade 3 trail, suitable for people with moderate fitness levels, and bushwalking experience is recommended as it has short steep sections and uneven surfaces.


Navigate the reserve with the free Avenza app

Download the Myponga Reservoir Reserve map


Cycling/mountain biking

Myponga offers mountain bike experiences for people of all ages with varying skill levels. Beginners should head to the south-eastern side of the reservoir reserve, while the western trails offer downhill thrills and challenging hills for more experienced riders.

The unsealed trail network at Myponga is shared by both cyclists and walkers. Please be considerate of other trail users.


Navigate the reserve with the free Avenza app

Download the Myponga Reservoir Reserve map


Kayaking/canoeing

Choose your experience with a kayak or canoe, from a short meander to a full day's kayaking adventure exploring the 250 hectares of water surrounded by stunning landscapes.

During the warmer months when the reservoir's level can be low, bring a trolley to get your kayak or canoe to the water's edge more easily.


Picnicking

There are several picnic tables along the trail and of course you’re welcome to pack a picnic basket complete with a blanket or chairs so you can sit back, relax and enjoy the view.


Lookout

The lookout above the Myponga dam wall on the western side of the reservoir is the prime stop for a stunning view of the reservoir, the dam wall and its spillway.


Wildlife and birdwatching

Take some time and see if you can spot some of the special species that call Myponga home. More than 120 bird species live in the area including some that enjoy life by the water and others that can be found inland. You can also watch for native animals, lizards and listen for frogs.


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

Blue-green algae

Algae is a common occurrence in open water sources, including reservoirs and the River Murray, especially during warmer months of the year when conditions are favourable for growth.

SA Water samplers, operators and scientists actively monitor and test the source water and connecting water networks during these times and adjust treatment processes as needed. This ensures they continue to supply safe, clean drinking water to their customers.

Some blue-green algae species produce compounds which can be harmful to humans and animals. Contact with untreated water in a reservoir where algae are present can be harmful to your health.

When blue-green algae levels are increasing, and related water treatment or algal management activities are being conducted, the site will be closed to visitors until 1pm that day. There will be clear signage at the entrance and on this website page.

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

Free offline maps

Use the free Avenza app to navigate around the reservoir reserve, record your GPS tracks or enjoy other features. Download the map to your mobile device and you can access it even without mobile coverage.

Download the Myponga Avenza map here.

Click map below for a print-friendly version.

Myponga Reservoir map

What sets Myponga Reservoir apart

Capacity: 27.6 gigalitres (there are one billion litres in a gigalitre), that’s enough to fill more than 55 Adelaide Ovals with water

Built: 1958-1962

Myponga Reservoir was built at a time of rapid economic expansion in South Australia. This reservoir, along with the raising of the Mount Bold Dam wall (also completed in 1962) increased the state’s storage capacity by 10 million gallons (45.46 million litres) supporting population growth and the expansion of industry in Adelaide’s south.

The idea of constructing a dam at Myponga River was investigated as early as 1930, but plans were delayed in favour of building Mount Bold Dam first.

In planning the project, a model was constructed in the hydraulics lab at the Adelaide University to determine the best design of the spillway to manage flood conditions.

The construction camp included:

  • three permanent buildings
  • six weatherboard buildings to house 12 single working men
  • a recreation room
  • a mess room
  • a bathroom and laundry building
  • an administration building
  • three garages.

Apart from the three permanent buildings, the others were dismantled and removed once the reservoir was built.

You can check current reservoir levels at SA Water's website.

Myponga Reservoir mystery

Two roads lie under the reservoir: the original Myponga Yankalilla main road and the Lovely Valley road. New roads were constructed to replace these, one taking you across the reservoir to the south of Myponga, and the other taking you across the dam wall on the western side of the reservoir. Also under the water is the site of the Lovely Valley School which was open from 1865 until 1869.

Water quality

Myponga Reservoir is one of 16 across the state that help supply water to more than 1.7 million South Australians.

Water from the reservoir is treated at the Myponga Water Treatment Plant before it is supplied to customers living on the Fleurieu Peninsula.

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.