Murray River and Snowy Mountains view, Towong, Upper Murray

Showcasing 'The Man From Snowy River' Country

 
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upper murrayThe Alpine Way between Thredbo and the Murray River at Bringenbrong is one of Australia's best scenic touring routes.
'our' murray river

The Murray River, Australia's longest river, officially begins in theisolated foothills of the Australian Alps just south of Mt. Pilot, near the areas known as Cowombat Flat and Forest Hill.

From its point of origin and for more than half of its 2500 kilometre journey, which ends when its waters enter the Indian Ocean off South Australia, the Murray River marks the state border between Victoriaand New South Wales.

For the first two hundred kilometres of its journey, the Murray River and its upper tributaries flow through a catchment area of pristine mountain country and fertile river flats.

This area is referred to as the
Upper Murray.

The Murray River changes from tha small alpine stream to a river of significance as it is fed by streams, creeks, rivers and underground springs, that also originate in the Alps.

The main tributaries of the Murray River inthe Upper Murray are theSwampy Plains River, theTooma River, theWheeler's- Nariel-Corryong Creekand theCudgewa Creek.

The mighty Murray River flows through the heart of the Upper Murray.


Much smaller Upper Murray tributaries directly flowing into the Murray River include theOurnie, House, Jingellic and Seven Mile Creeks.

While indigenous Australians have utilised the Murray River overmany thousands of years, the river's importance to those of European descent began less than two centuries ago.

In 1824 the Hume and Hovell expedition travelling fromLake George, near present day Canberra, to Corio Bay, near present day Geelong, first crossed this river, they named the Hume River, near present day Albury-Wodonga.

In 1830 explorer Charles Sturt unwittingly named a lower portion of the same river after the Secretary of State of the time, Sir George Murray. Eventually, the entire river became known as the Murray  River.

Little did these early explorers realise at the time the important role the MurrayR
iver would play in the future settlement and development of south-eastern Australia.

 

the Murray River

In the late 1830s wealthy pastoralists of European heritage took out the first grazing licenses in the Upper Murray.

These first pastoral runs supported mainly sheep and cattle grazing. Mineral prospecting and changes in the land ownership regulations eventually brought more people to the Upper Murray, setting the stage for the development of villages and towns.

The fertile river flats of the upper Murray River support some of Australia's finest livestock and cropping businesses.Seven generations after the first European pioneers, our rural community continues to rely on the high quality waters of the Upper Murray catchment.

In addition to access to high quality water, advances in livestock genetics and health care, irrigation and fodder conservation methods as well as the introduction of super phosphate and other trace nutrients on these rural properties and the establishment of Landcare initiatives have allowed farming families to increase stocking rates while creating environmentally and economically sustainable farms. 

Renown for producing some of Australia's best quality cattle and sheep, the Upper Murray's agricultural industry remains the heart and soul of the local economy.The Murray River at Jingellic. The billabongs and oxbow lakes created on the river's flood plain are natural wildlife refuges. Great for bird watching or fishing.

The upper catchment of the Murray River has also played a significant role in the production of hydro electricity since the 1960s.

Snowy Hydro Ltd manages the flow of water within the Kosciuszko National Park to provide a renewable clean energy to the national power grid and to provide additional water, for irrigation purposes west of the Snowy Mountains, into both the Murrumbidgee and Murray River systems.

The upper Murray River and its tributaries are also significant recreational destinations.

Fishing, whitewater rafting, canoeing, kayaking, waterskiing and many other water sports are popular pastimes enjoyed by local residents and the many people who have discovered the region.

Read on to learn more about the Murray River's upper tributaries

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