Lake Cootharaba, Sunshine Coast (QLD Australia)
Lake Cootharaba is located about 25 mins drive from Noosa Heads on the Sunshine Coast and is part of the Noosa River System and is approx 8 km long x 5 km wide.
The lake gets between 15-20 knots of wind (generally in the afternoon) & is great for advanced sailors who want long fast slalom or speed runs. As the wind increases so does the chop so it is good for bump-and-jump. There is also some good long board cruising to sights around the lake like Kinaba and Teewah landing.
Foiling is possible in the northern part of the lake where the water is a bit deeper, but it still requires a long walk out to get enough depth.
Most of the lake is just 1 – 2 metres deep (3 metres at its deepest) making it a great spot for beginners or for those who just need to take a break.
The best wind direction for this spot is NE or N with November and March noted being the most consistent for this wind direction.
From Dec winds tend to be more SE which is still great fun with long runs but not as clean as NE winds.
Hazards include the odd nibble on the toes by crabs and there are small stingrays around so best to wear booties for protection. Also stay clear of Mill Point (at least 300 m) as there is a gravel bank that comes out from the point and may cause a fin strike / damage.
Kiting can be a bit of a challenge in the lake as there is very little beach to rig and the only way to launch is from the water so you need to know how to water launch.
Access, Rigging & Launching
There are 4 main launching areas on the lake:
Boreen Point Campsite – there are some nice grassy rigging areas under the shelter of trees and then just a few steps to the lovely sandy beach. The beach and the water is lovely light coloured sand and the water is very clear. The only downside is water in front of the campsite (the southern part of the lake) is pretty shallow for a long way out; ideal for windsurfers but no good for foiling. This spot works best in a SW, S & E breeze.
Sailing Club – you can park and launch from the sailing club at Boreen Point but it can get busy especially on a race day for the club. Here the water tends to get deeper more quickly but still requires a walk out for foilers, but once out there is is a foilers paradise especially for beginners. There are also a few large submerged rocks lurking under the surface so be sure to get some advice from the locals or sail cautiously as the water becomes shallow. Wind Directions: SE, E, ENE.
Buffalo Park – when the wind blows from the N, this launching area is just around the point from the sailing club where you can get clear wind right from the shore. There is a lovely green grassy rigging area under trees with room for several cars/vans along the roadside for parking. There is also a kids playground & bbq facilities here.
Elanda Point – at the foreshore in front of the Habitat Noosa Everglades Ecocamp which is also a great place to base yourself for a Cootharaba windsurfing, kitesurfing or wing foiling holiday. If you decide not to camp here you have to pay a small fee for a day pass. This spot has parking and a nice grassy area for rigging and a nice sandy beach for launching. This spot works best in an ESE to S. In an Easterly or NE’ly it is very gusty on a strong wind day.
Sailing In General
There is limited access anywhere around the lake for Kitesurfers who will be required to do a water or assisted launch. But once out on the water it is a great spot for kiting. Foilers will have to walk out about 300 to 500+ metres to get to the deeper water.
The entire lake a good spot for beginner windsurfers and also kitesurfers with an assisted launch.
You can get accurate wind readings from the Cootharaba Yacht Club.
Camping At The Lake
The small town of Boreen Point sits on the western side of the lake.
The best way to experience Lake Cootharaba and its beauty is to camp. Campgrounds at Boreen Point at the Boreen Point Campground and nearby Elanda Point at the Habitat Noosa Everglades Ecocamp have good amenities and both offer powered and unpowered sites at a reasonable price.
It is possible to pitch a tent on the edge of the lake and wake to a spectacular view. In the early morning the lake can be like a sheet of glass.
Other benefits of camping at Lake Cootharaba are kangaroos hopping through the campsite and tame possums feeding at night.
Dogs are allowed at Boreen Point campsite however are restricted to your camping site on a lead however there are dog off-lead areas along the lake where doggie can get a good run. There are no dogs allowed at Elanda Point as it is a sanctuary.
The lake is also great for yacht sailing, fishing, swimming, bike riding, camping and has some dog friendly beaches.
The Everglades at the northern end of the lake are recognised as a “Wetland of International Importance”. Over 44% of all Australia’s bird species reside within this spectacular region. 1,365 species of plants have been identified and over 700 native animals co-exist here. You can jump on a local tour to paddle around the everglades or if you have your own boat you can head over there and check them out.
There is not a lot of amenities & services in Boreen Point however if you stay there you must visit the historic Apollonian Hotel which has a lovely atmosphere & great food. There is also a general store that stocks some staples and serves nice coffee & simple takeaway food.
Lake Cootharaba Accommodation
The main launching areas are located close to the town of Boreen Point where you can find a couple of holiday homes as well as a couple of camping grounds. There is a lovely pub and a sailing club but nightlife is pretty limited..so if that is what you are after you might be better off staying in Noosa where there is plenty.
- Boreen Point Campsite, Lake Cootharaba Boreen Point Campsite is a great place to stay for a chilled out holiday next to the lake. Leave your windsurfer rigged up and stroll to the water’s edge when the wind gets up. Swimming & fishing are great activities right in front of the camping area. A general store and family pub are within Read more...
- Price Range:
Beechs’ Brook Rainforest Retreat Beechs’ Brook Rainforest Retreat is located in Cootharabah (not far from the Lake Cootharaba Launching areas). They offer 2 x double studio apartments (max 2 guests per room) and a 2-bedroom apartment that sleeps up to 4 guests. This property is dog friendly upon request and extra charges might apply. All apartments comprise a seating area, Read more...
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- Flat Water Blasting
- Speed Sailing
- Bump and Jump
- Longboard Cruising
- Flat Water
- Moderate Temp Water
- Fresh Water
- Easy Launching
- On-site Parking
- Free Parking
- Camp Ground
- RV Camping
- Sand Bars
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