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Opening of the Sand Bar at Lake Tyers Beach

For some dramatic photos of what levels the lake can reach also see HowDeep.

21 June 2022: We have easily passed last years opening anniversary and no sign of the lake closing. The entrance is looking healthy and and only small signs that it is likely to close over soon.

4 April 2022: The lake has opened for the third time, this time within 12 months of the mid winter opening. This would appear to be unprecedented for most people living around Lake Tyers. It was unusual as the lake level on the official blue rule at Number Two Jetty was only reading about 1.4m when it opened. We had had wild storm leading up to it and it may have softened the sand bar that had not properly consolidated. This came as a complete surprise to me as I had always insisted that the lake level had to reach at least 2.1m to open. However quite a good opening has occurred and the Prawn season has been brought to a sudden halt. Most of the Prawns immediately took off into the ocean, and good luck to them.
Lake Tyers opening, the third in 12 months, at Lake Tyers Beach

9 September 2021:The lake has opened again within 3months.  This time a more spectacular and longer lasting opening was achieved. Tidal effects are being produced right up the lake.
Lake Tyers sandbar several hours before opening.
The lake teetered on opening for quite a few days with a precariously small sandbar separating the lake from the ocean at high tide.  These people were toying with disaster, trying to tickle it into opening. Eventually it broke through towards the middle of the sandbar this time and really made a decent cut. It opened about 10cm lower, around 210cm on the measure at Nos2 Ramp, due to the lower sandbar.
Wide view of the opening several days after at Lake Tyers Beach 12th Sep
Even though it opened with less water, the opening was much bigger and longer lasting. This was the opening on the 25th September, 16 days later. Last time the lake had closed within a fortnight. Very tidal and should ensure we have Prawns this Easter :-)
Lake Tyers opening 16 days later

8 July 2021: The Lake has closed over with a just drift of wash over the bar earlier this week. The original cut was filled quickly and the opening moved 20-50m along the beach to the west and washed into a shallow bar, and then has almost filled this week. This has been a very short opening and raises our hopes it may have two openings this year. The lake is still at a reasonable level and a good, wet winter could set us up for another opening later in the year. Only time will tell....

14 June 2021: The lake has finally opened. It took 4 years and 11 months since the last time it opened in 2016 (See below).  As usual there was frenetic curiosity about the lake and what was about to happen. We had more theories than Silver Gulls flying around picking over the tit-bits of information. The lake burst through at the eastern end of the sand bar and appears to be a natural opening. We had the usual cast of anemic heroes wanting to dig it through, but fortunately they did not get to make their weary statement. We can now look forward to the opening moving along the beach and benefits of being tidal for a few months. There are plenty of photos of FB and other pages these days so they will not be repeated here, but more photos will be added as the opening progresses. It is not just an event that occurs in a few hours and everyone goes back to forgetting about the lake, it is an organic process with many features to be thought about. For the moment though, enjoy!! A worthy spectacle!! (Don't forget to log your photos with the Fluker site behind the toilets, above the car park).
Opening at Lake Tyers 2021 Jun14
This shot below was taken 8 days before hand and before about 60mm of rain.
Lake Tyers 8 days before it opened Jun14 2021.

22 April 2018: We have had very little rain this year and the lake level is at an all time low.  This is worse than last year (2017) when the lake did not open at all.  We are looking down the barrel of a serious drought.  There has been very little rain bearing low pressure systems off Sydney.  Hence there been no major South East Coast Lows storms coming down the East Coast to bring rain into our part of the country for ages. This does not look like it will improve in the near future. These are the only systems that bring high rainfall.  Most rain bearing lows pressure systems from the west have run out by the time they get here, and there have been very few of them as well.

 27 October 2016: After a storm last weekend the swell pushed back up the opening and easily washed over the sandbar. This activity freshened up the opening quite a bit and re-sculptured its shape. Now that the storm is over we can appreciate the changes. People observed waves rolling in almost uninterrupted from the ocean the the edge of the Tavern Car Park. Others observed that the water was coming in so freely it looked like two openings. Further around at Red Bluff the water was pushing up the track! I was lucky enough to get to chat to Bill Mackin for a few minutes and observe the changes, and I would like to thank him for his support for the LTB Website over the years it has been running! Thanks Bill, your support is appreciated. (22-4-18 Bill has since sold his house and moved on).
Opening at Lake Tyers Beach Oct2016

7 July 2016: The Lake has opened naturally after torrential rain up in the catchment area with falls around the 150-170mm mark . Lake Tyers Beach was only able to muster about 40mm (some locals reported around 60mm). The BOM Radar site indicated a very heavy fall associated with an East Coast Low across this area.
Opening of Lake Tyers, July 10 2016
The lake rose about 140cm in the matter of a couple of days and reached the magic peak of about 220cm on the Number 2 Boat Ramp Rule at about 8 am and it began to break through people were able to get up relatively close (definitely not recommended as the sand can collapse without warning and you could be washed out) and record some video of it.

4 December 2015: The bar has just about returned. Only a small amount washing in at high tide and then a trickle out over the very minimal bar the rest of the tide. The water in the lower lake is exceptionally clear at the moment and must be ideal to swim in around the bar. Make the most of it now as it will lose that pristine state as summer goes on.

27 November 2015: A huge South Westerly storm has blown in yesterday and reopened the lake. The sandbar that was consolidating the day before has been washed out and there is a clear run into the ocean. The incoming high tide was washing in this morning with a line of about 12 Pelicans fishing for any treats trying to enter the lake. There is a shallow, but significant bar on the inside of the opening and this will probably be the basis for the next bar to build on. However for the moment the complete closure has been set back at least a week or two.

22 November 2015: The lake has closed over and barring any major storms or rain events in the next few weeks will consolidate into a sandbar that will last the summer months until we see it break again in 2016. Those people who chase the Prawns will be happy as it nmeans the main population is now hemmed into the lake and trapped. We will look forward to new fishing conditions and challenges.

9 Augus 2015: The Lake Tyers sandbar was breached last night and the lake is emptying today. There is a massive slot cut throught the center of the sandbar and the water in the lake is draining very quickly. Unlike previous years this slot is massive and not shallow and wide. The wait for a really high level before an opening occured (naturally or otherwise) appears to have been worth it. The lake level was measured at 2.18m (218cm) the day before the breakout, so the estimate of 2.2m for a break out was pretty accurate.
9th Aug 2015: Opening of Lake Tyers
NB: Extra close up of the opening Those people sure look small....

2014 Summary:
As of start of Februrary the opening of 2014 had properly closed and a substantial sandbar is in place. We will have to patiently await another opening maybe in the middle of the year.

The 2014 opening was one of the longest for quite a while going from the mid August to mid January, it will definitely mean we will have native prawn larvae that come down from the northern seas in the lake again for a few more seasons. We also have King Prawns that have been introduced in a stocking program to the lake as well. These are also present naturally but the study is seeing if it is possible to boost these numbers.

20 December 2014: Some heavy rain probably about 100mm over the last two months has kept the opening fairly deep and will definitely be running in the new year. the channel could be a very popular prawning location. However take care (especially at night as there is a big danger of being knocked over and swept out).
Opening Lake Tyers Beach 20 Dec 2014

1 September 2014: A reasonably shallow opening but may narrow and deepen with daily tidal movement.
Lake Tyers opened July 2014

20th August 2014
Well almost exactly a year later but this time opened by man, not naturally. (From #2 Boat Ramp)
Opening 2014 August LTB
The opening from the Number 2 Boat ramp looking back towards the ocean, a broad shallow opening at this stage.

The lake has been dug through by a person from Lakes Entrance. The authorities were contemplating opening it themselves, as they felt more rains was imminent and very likely to cause the lake to open on its own. This was not good enough for one person at least who took the matter into his own hands. Some claim it needed another 20cm of water to go naturally, and this extra depth of water is a massive amount. The extra water could have cut a deeper channel and increased the chances of significant fish stocks being exchanged with the sea. If the opening seals over quickly, then the critics will be right!!! 2013's opening, a natural one, remained open from June to November and allowed very significant tidal exchanges. (We did get 30-40mm rain in the following week, so we could have waited).
Number 2 Boat Ramp Lake Tyers Beach
The jetties were covered leading in to this state.

Jetties at Lake Tyers Beach
As shown above by Rob (Daff) Rawlings Photo!!
(Almost like launching your boat in the car park!!)

25th Agust 2013
The opening has been very wide and tidal flows very strong. Many locals say this is an exceptional opening.
Lake Tyers Beach sandbar open

26 July 2013

Lake Tyers Beach 25 July 2013
The sandbar is forming its usual patterns inside the lake, revealing where past breaks have been.
18th June 2013

Well the sandbar has gone again, but something of a record this time in that heavy rain started on Wednesday pm with the lake at its lowest ebb for ages, and filled through to opening Tuesday am. No incremental build ups and final break through, just straight up and through this time. A real sprint!! Estimates vary widly about the rainfall some say about 200+mm other say closer to 150+mm, either way it was a spectacular fill.
Lake Tyers opening 2013 Jun 18 7:30am
Below is a dramatic shot of the current flowing out of the lake into the ocean taken from Beacons Reserve.
Lake Tyers bursting into the sea 2013 Jun 18

2012, 9th of October
Nearly closed over, only high tides are washing into the lake, the channel is just a shallow trickle most of the time.
Lake Tyers BEach opening
2012, 6th of June
Wednesday morning (below) it has truly opened and water moving out to sea,
Lake Tyers opening June 2012
Tuesday Lunch time (below), not sure if this will be a full opening or not but here are some photos to give you the atmosphere of the process.
Lake Tyers opening? June 2012
A broad shallow opening, or should it be called a bridged sandbar as the lake is just not dropping quick enough. Maybe the tides are not low enough to create a big "channel cutting" rush?
Girls Tavern car park Lake Tyers Beach June 2012
Girls enjoying a cold day's sightseeing in the Tavern car park.
Lake Tyers sandbar June 2012
Is there are mad man loose out there that I can see?
Frank Flynn Lake Tyers Beach June 2012
Phew!!! Thanks goodness - it is not a mad man, just Frank Flynn chasing the perfect shot, talk about keen???!!!!

Panorama Christmas/New Year at Lake Tyers 2011
(A full 360 taken and prepared by Nicholas Ward, click on it if you like to see the big 1.4Mb image )
Panorama 2011 Lake Tyers Beach 2011

Panorama - August 27 2011 the lake has opened again, but closed by Xmas.

Lake Tyers Beach Opening 2011-08-11

Panorama - June 2011 and the Lake is still closed but much deeper.
State of Sandbar Lake Tyers Beach 2011Nov19
Panorama - August 2009 and the Lake is closed.

Lake Tyers Beach Agust 2009
However it has opened in recent times and, below is chronicled the few openings that I have witnessed (in reverse order chronologically).

December2008/January2009: This time the sand bar was breached artificially with shovels. The gap was made to the east of the last opening and was not that deep or long lasting as the lake was not that high when the breach was made.

Panorama of the westerly man made entrance.

Lake Tyers Beach January 2008 Open

How did a couple of men dig though the sandbar? Well the photograph below shows that during a storm in December 2008, the bar was low enough for storms to wash over into the lake. If the bar had been left alone it would have probably built up and the high water retained for quite a while, until it burst through naturally again. Once a narrow channel had been dug that night, the small trickle became a deluge, and the bar was broken. Apparently the people responsible were fined for this unauthorised interference.
Storms Dec 2008 Lake Tyers Beach

Panorama of a naturally made breach
December 2007: Natural entrance shown below created by storms earlier at the middle of that year. Note the entrance is silting up with the easterly drift of sand along 90 Mile Beach.
The entrance is nearly closed again.
-Lake Tyers Beach December2007

August 2007: The eastern side of the entrance is building up with sand wash from the 90 Mile Beach and generally prevailing westerly winds.
Lake Tyers Beach August 2007

Looking from the air after a few months (September,2007) it looked like this...
Lake Tyers Beach September 2007

The entrance created shown below was at the height of the storms mid 2007. The regional floods stopped traffic on the Princes Highway at many river locations, as the Tambo, Nicholson, Mitchell, Avon all flooded. The most significant for traffic was the Mitchell River at Bairnsdale, being the last main road to open.
Lake Tyers Beach June 2007

The huge force of this natural opening in June 2007 is evident as shown here with the breadth and energy of the breach. The lake was very tidal and huge quantities of sea water washed in and out on the tides for many months afterwards. The fishing in the lake was quite depressed during this time.

However it is not recommended to be this close to the action!!! No matter how interesting!!!

Onlookers Lake Tyers Beach
Ariel Photos: This following picture is in the posession of Gus and Lorraine and have kindly allowed me to show a retouched copy of the original. If you have the band width you may like to click on the photo and see if you house was built then. Does anyone have an idea of the date of this photo? Well one person (thanks!) has phoned in and places it in the 1970's. Can anyone else corroborate that suggestion?

Aerial Shot of Lake Tyers Beach

Just to further whet your taste buds, here is an older aerial photograph of the early Lake Tyers Beach with some indication of the sand bar. Bec and Daff have this as a kind of postcard, do you have anything you would like to share? Thanks to a fan of the site we have agreed on 1985, however another person has suggested it is more likely in the 1960's. If you check it closely you can see
the massive Norfolk Island Pine (now in the front decking of the Tavern) when it was much smaller.
Lake Tyers Beach Circa 1970's?

Check out these aerial images of the Lake Entrance opening courtesy http://www.lesmp.vic.gov.au - very interesting indeed! Especially the 1944 photo.