Gundagai-Wagga (18-20 March 1995, 4 November 2000 and 6 November 2004, 122 km)
The Gundagai to Wagga section of the Murrumbidgee has two convenient camping sites enroute which are accessible by car. These are at Sandy Beach near Wantabadgery and Oura Beach near the village of Oura. Both of these campsites are accessible from the Oura Road which runs from Gundagai to Wagga on the north side of the Murrumbidgee.
Saturday 18 March 1995
A convenient launching ramp is located on the north bank just to the west of the Hume Highway bridge at Gundagai. From here to Sandy Beach it takes about 8 hours when the river is reasonably high (flow of 12000 Ml/day at Wagga), including stops for lunch and rest breaks, to cover the 53km. Care must be taken to leave adequate time to complete any car shuffle prior to departure so that there is adequate daylight in which to reach the destination. About 12 km before Sandy Beach there is a low level bridge across the river which may need to be portaged at high river levels. In Nov 2010 with a flow of about 16000 Ml/day (18000 Ml/day at Gundagai) Dick reported that the flow was about 6 km/hr so they were regularly paddling at over 10 km/hr. He also said "The low level bridge is still there but we were able to pass under it but had to duck our heads. I estimate the water was about 700 mm below it."
Saturday 4 November 2000
It takes about 7 hours (including breaks) to paddle the 41km from Sandy Beach to Oura. The river in this section is somewhat slower than in the previous section and also safer. The Sandy and Oura Beach camping areas only provide basic facilities but are situated on the bank overlooking the river. Picnic tables and fireplaces are set in amongst the gum trees. (I paddled this section with David in the double estuary kayak with others in November 2000 at a flow of 11000 Ml/day at Wagga.)
Sunday 19 March 1995
The 28km section from Oura to Wagga can be completed in 3-4 hours (3 ½ hours paddling time in 2004 with a flow of about 8000 Ml/day). Again the river slows down the further it travels from the hilly country to the east. In this section it is very noticable due to noise and human presence that the river approaches a major population centre. A convenient Council Caravan park is situated at Wagga Beach.