Great Darling Anabranch

Low altitude aerial photo of two bridges crossing the Great Darling Anabranch, west of Wentworth, NSW, Australia.

The Great Darling Anabranch or a river no more.

In the true sense of the term. The Great Anabranch of the Darling River, isn’t really an anabranch. For it to be a true anabranch it would need to flow back into itself. The Anabranch flows into the Murray River a few kilometres downstream of Wentworth.

Last rays of sunlight hitting a group of very old river Red Gum trees on the bank of the Great Darling Anabranch.
Bathed in golden light on the banks of the Great Anabranch of the Darling River, a group of old River Red Gums are reflected in the calm water.
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The anabranch formed when the Darling river took an alternative path to it’s confluence with the Murray River some 10,000 years ago. Branching from the Darling south of Menindee it traveled 460 kilometres to the Murray.

The Anabranch wasn’t a permanent river. Running only during good times, when water was plentiful. Drying up during extended periods of drought.

Low altitude aerial of the Great Darling Anabranch at its southern end.
Low altitude aerial of the Great Anabranch of the Darling River. North of the confluence with the Murray River.
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During the 1960’s the Menindee Lake System was developed. At the same time, seventeen low-level weirs were constructed. Turning the old river into a permanent water supply for outback properties along its path.

In 2007 a pipeline running the length of the anabranch was built. Supplying water to inhabitants along the watercourse and once again returning the habitat to a more natural state.