Cotter Bend

About

About

Cotter Bend Image

The Cotter Bend, where the Paddys River meets the Cotter River, is a favourite with many for a swim, splash and for fishing. A wide pool and sandy beach marks the meeting of the two rivers. Paddys River has its genesis at Mount Tennent beyond Tharwa in Namadgi National Park and its fresh clean waters complement the Cotter as they come together at the 'Bend'.

The Cotter Bend has plenty of grassy areas with shade on sunny days, and you will often see families picnicking or playing cricket. There are free barbeques and toilet facilities available. From here you can walk the Bullen Track to the historic Cotter Caves, or go for a stroll along the river.

No bins are provided - please take your rubbish home with you.

No dogs allowed.

For dog friendly recreation along the Murrumbidgee River you can go to Uriarra Crossing, Murrays Corner or Point Hut Crossing.

Located close by:

Map

Map

This map shows the location of Cotter Catchment Lookout, Cotter Avenue, Cotter Bend, Cotter Campground, Cotter Caves, Moores Hill, Grasstree Lookout and Casuarina Sands.

Note: If you have difficulty accessing the information in this map please contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

View larger map

This map shows the location of Cotter Catchment Lookout, Cotter Avenue, Cotter Bend, Cotter Campground, Cotter Caves, Moores Hill, Grasstree Lookout and Casuarina Sands

Facilities and activities

Facilities and activities

  • Wheelchair access
  • Toilets
  • Electric barbecues
  • Drinking water
  • Picnic tables
  • Fishing
  • Swimming
  • Walking trails

photo of autumn leaves at Cotter Bend.

Walking trails

Walking trails

Cotter Dam Discovery Trail

Distance: 1km return

Time suggested: 1 hour

Difficulty: wheelchair friendly, easy

This trail allows visitors to get an up close and personal view of the Cotter Dam enlargement. Cross the Cotter River and wind your way up to the Dam viewing area, learning about the history of the Dam along the way. The trail is lined with stories of Canberra's water history and features a 16-metre wide, amphitheatre-style viewing platform which provides direct views of the Cotter Dam.

Cotter Explorer Track

Distance: 2km return

Time suggested: 1 hour

Difficulty: wheelchair friendly, easy

This trail takes you along the banks for the Cotter River as well as up and along the Cotter Avenue. It is wheelchair and pram friendly.

The Bullen Track

Distance: 4.5km return

Time suggested: 2 hours

Difficulty: moderate

This fascinating walking trail explores both sides of the Cotter River before climbing up the side of the Bullen Range then down to cross the Paddys River. There is no bridge so you may get your feet wet as you wade and rock hop across. After crossing the river you wind your way up to end at the Cotter Caves which are closed to the public due to vandalism, safety and conservation concerns. However, you can still see inside and learn about the history of mineral exploration in Canberra.

Directions

Directions

Cotter Bend is located 25 minutes west of the Canberra city centre on Cotter Road.

Please remember the following

  • There are no bins provided, please take your rubbish home and recycle.
  • Bring your firewood with you. Collection of standing or fallen timber from all public lands, including roadsides, is illegal and environmentally damaging, as it removes important habitat.
  • Be aware that phone reception is not reliable throughout the Murrumbidgee River Corridor. Do not depend on your phone for safety or directions
  • Please check the water quality conditions before you go swimming

More information and feedback

For more information or to provide feedback, contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81 or complete an online feedback form.

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