Lake Macdonald (Six Mile Creek)

Home Dams and Weirs Lake Macdonald (Six Mile Creek)

About Lake Macdonald

Originally built in 1965, the dam was raised in 1980 to increase its storage capacity. 

Although the official name is ‘Six Mile Creek Dam’, it is more well-known as Lake Macdonald. The dam is located in the Noosa hinterland and is part of South East Queensland’s drinking water supply.

It is an un-gated dam, meaning that when it reaches 100 per cent capacity, water flows over the spillway and safely out of the dam. If you would like to be notified when Lake Macdonald (Six Mile Creek) Dam begins to spill, sign up to our free dam release notification service or download our public safety mobile app.

Flood mitigation

All dams help mitigate flooding to some extent. The peak outflow from a gated or un-gated dam during a flood event is less than the peak outflow that would have occurred had the dam not been built, because some water is held in the dam while it is spilling. This means that water flow slows down as floods pass through the dam.

It’s important neighbours and people downstream of dams know what to do in the unlikely event of an emergency. Each of our dams have an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) in place to enable us to respond quickly to potential incidents in partnership with the Bureau of Meteorology, relevant emergency services and local councils. For Lake Macdonald (Six Mile Creek Dam), this is Noosa Shire Council.

Current capacity

Full supply volume
8,018 ML
Current volume
8,056 ML
at 1:00am 26/07/2024
Dam is spilling
  • Key information

    Lake Macdonald (Six Mile Creek)

    Six Mile Creek

    Approximately 4 km north-east of Cooroy

    Catchment area

    Length of dam wall

    Year completed

    Type of construction
    Earth and rock fill dam

  • Lake Macdonald is located near Cooroy on the Sunshine Coast and is part of the SEQ Water Grid.

    The lake has a catchment area of 49 km2 and the dam holds 8,018 million litres of water at full supply.

  • Lake Macdonald Dam Emergency Action Plan

    During a flood event, Seqwater monitors the safety of all dams, including Lake Macdonald Dam, 24 hours a day.

    Dams cannot prevent flooding from occurring altogether and in an extreme flood, there are risks that the safety of the dam may become compromised.

    All dams managed by Seqwater have an Emergency Action Plan (EAP). This is standard industry practice and a regulatory requirement of responsible dam infrastructure owners, to support a quick and coordinated approach in the event of an emergency.

    While Lake Macdonald Dam continues to operate safely, severe weather can be unpredictable and it’s important  residents living near or downstream of Lake Macdonald Dam and close to Six Mile Creek familiarise themselves with the Lake Macdonald Dam EAP and have an evacuation plan in place for the household.

    What does this mean?

    In the event of a potential or actual dam safety emergency at Lake Macdonald Dam, residents within the area will receive a text message or an automated voice message to the home phone via the Emergency Alert system.

    Types of messages that could be used

    Flood orange warning iconWARNING LEVEL – Watch and Act
    Prepare to leave

    What you should do:

    • Prepare to leave so you can go quickly if the Pine River water levels start to rise. Get ready now.
    • Decide where you and the people you live with will go if the situation worsens. Find a safe and high place away from flooding such as an Evacuation Centre.
    • Warn friends, family and neighbours in the area of the possibility of flooding.

    Flood red warning iconWARNING LEVEL: EMERGENCY WARNING
    Move to higher ground – Dangerous flood levels

    What you should do:

    • Stay where you are and get up as high as you safely can. This could be upstairs or the roof.
    • Help other people who are with you if you can.
    • Tell someone where you are.
    • Stay in place until you are rescued, or wait until the water goes down to safely leave.

    Stay prepared & informed

    In the event of a potential or actual flood emergency at Lake Macdonald Dam, it’s important neighbours and residents living nearby or downstream of this water source are aware of the flood risk and how to stay informed:

    Download the Living downstream of Lake Macdonald Dam flyer for easy reference.