The lakes in north-central Victoria attract a lot of families in the summer, including ours - water-skiing, windsurfing, swimming, jetboating and fishing. The levels are held artificially high because of the interconnected irrigation storage.
But not this year. There isn't enough water to go around.
Lake Boga, south of Swan Hill, is dry for the first time ever it seems. It's hard to imagine that it was used as a Catalina Base in WW2. The local residents, who have built their homes around the edge for the view, got a bit annoyed when the fish started dying. Thousands of fish, especially the introduced European Carp. It got a bit smelly at Lake Boga.
And Lake Meran, west of Kerang, has been dry for several seasons. The River Red Gum seedlings are encroaching inwards from the bank and the diving platform is left high and dry. No church picnics at Meran for a while!
Before European settlement the lakes in this area used to flood and dry out regularly - most of them have stumps of trees in the middle. It's hard to believe that with climate change we'll ever see the lakes full again.