Rainbow Lake Trail
Ngarigo Country

1 h to 2 h

2.6 km
return

↑ 107 m
↓ -107 m

Moderate track
This popular walk explores the snow gums and alpine grasslands between Kosciuszko Rd and Rainbow Lake. The lake is the main focal point for the walk and is a great place to rest or have lunch. The man-made lake was built in the early 1900's to provide water to the Hotel Kosciusko, it is now a natural, historic and beautiful point of interest to visitors. Let us begin by acknowledging the Ngarigo people, Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. 
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Sign at the start of the Rainbow Lake walk. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Snow Gums near the road. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Heading through the snow gums. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Walking to Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Crossing the creek. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Under the Power lines. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Following the old service trail away from the road. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Open alpine grass land. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Following the old service trial. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Snow Gum by the old service trail near Rainbow lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Glimpse of Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Creek below Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
On the Dam wall of Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Timber platform on Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Dam wall of Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
East side of Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
East side of Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Looking down on Rainbow Lake. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
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Safer Bushwalks
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
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Getting There
Transport options and directions
Start (-36.3698732,148.4743608)
Mode Car (A park entry fee is required for driving into the park.)
DirectionsFrom Kosciuszko Road
  • Turn on to then drive for 255 m
  • Turn slight left onto Kosciuszko Road and drive for another 11.3 km
  • Keep left and drive for another 30 m
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the lower end of the car park on Kosciuszko Rd (about 2.4km east of Guthega Rd), near the 'Rainbow Lake Walk' sign, this walk follows the track heading into the Snow Gums. The track winds through the gums until joining onto an old management trail. The walk follows the management trail down the hill and across the small creek, then continues under the power lines and starts to climb up through clumps of snow gums and open alpine grassy areas. After a little while, the walk levels out and comes to a great view of Rainbow Lake. From here, the walk heads down the hill, following the clear management trail to the bottom end of the lake. The walk passes a few clearings (nice for picnics) near the lake, then comes to an intersection just before the creek (which drains out of Rainbow Lake).....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start heading along Rainbow Lake Walk.
After 10 m to find the "Rainbow Lake Walk".
After another 200 m cross the ford.
After another 1.1 km cross the ford.
Continue another 35 m to find the end. Then turn around here and retrace the main route for 1.3 km to get back to the start.
"Rainbow Lake".
Rainbow Lake
Rainbow Lake

Rainbow Lake is a body of water in Kosciuszko National park, providing a lovely focal point for walkers and skiers. Diggers Creek was dammed to create a water supply for the then 'Hotel Kosciusko' which burnt down in 1951 (first opened in 1909). The resulting Rainbow Lake left a bit of heritage for people to enjoy. A faint track exists around the perimeter of the lake, providing a variety of views of the lake and access to some of the old fence line from the days when cattle were grazed in the area. The lake is a great place for picnickers, photographers and walkers, a magical spot on sunny days.
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Rainbow Lake is a body of water in Kosciuszko National park, providing a lovely focal point for walkers and skiers. Diggers Creek was dammed to create a water supply for the then 'Hotel Kosciusko' which burnt down in 1951 (first opened in 1909). The resulting Rainbow Lake left a bit of heritage for people to enjoy. A faint track exists around the perimeter of the lake, providing a variety of views of the lake and access to some of the old fence line from the days when cattle were grazed in the area. The lake is a great place for picnickers, photographers and walkers, a magical spot on sunny days.

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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Rainbow Lake Trail


Grading
Class 3/6
Moderate track
Length 2.6 km
Time 1 h to 2 h
Quality of track Clear and well formed track or trail (2/6)
Gradient Short steep hills (3/6)
Signage Directional signs along the way (3/6)
Infrastructure Limited facilities, not all cliffs are fenced (3/6)
Experience Required No experience required (1/6)
Weather Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)
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Articles
Discover more details to thrive on track
Covered in snow part of the year
This walk leads through an extreme alpine environment and all walkers must be well prepared. During summer, be prepared for both very hot and cold weather, high winds, rain, snow, extreme UV levels and some sections of snow or ice on the ground. Before starting this walk, check advice with
Snowy Region Visitor Information Centre (02) 6450 5600, the weather forecast and the snow conditions then change your plans as needed. These notes, grades and walking times have been written for use in the summer months only. Between May and the end of October, this walk is likely to be covered in snow/ice, visitors should be carrying and be prepared to use snowshoes or cross country skis. When there is a chance of significant snow on the ground, visitors will need particularly strong navigation and snowcraft skills - tracks and signage may not be visible. For most visitors, it is best to consider this walk closed during the colder months.
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