|Autumn poplars line the
Small town between Cooma and the New South Wales
The tiny settlement of Berridale calls itself 'Crossroads of
the Snowy' because, when miners were making their way to the
goldfields at Adaminaby and Kiandra from the port at Twofold
Bay, they passed through Berridale.
Today it is a small service town which, by an accident of
history, lies conveniently between Cooma and the snowfields
of Thredbo and Perisher Valley. Consequently each winter it
becomes a popular stopover point for thousands of people who
are heading to the snowfields.
Located 436 km southwest of Sydney and 35 km from Cooma
it has a population of 800 and is 860 metres above sea level
(ie. below the snow line). It is a small township with a
winery, a small shopping centre and the Snowy River Shire
As a wit in Jindabyne observed: 'Berridale is the sort of
town where if you blink you'll miss it but if you roar
through you'll remember it forever because you'll probably
get booked for exceeding the 60 km speed limit.'
Berridale was first settled in the early 1860s when
William Oliver selected land in the area. He built a house
in 1863 which subsequently became a wayside inn. The site of
the original building is now Berridale Inn on the Jindabyne
Road. Oliver named the town after his home in Scotland. The
area grew slowly and although the SMA established a work
camp in the town there is little evidence of SMA housing.
Things to see:
The Poplar Drive
The chief attractions of the town are the poplar drive (on
the Jindabyne side of town) which, in autumn, boasts one of
the finest stands of yellowing poplars anywhere in the Snowy
Mountains and the old schoolhouse in Oliver Street which
dates from 1883 and is listed by the National Trust.
Although the buildings have had extensions they still are a
reminder of what a small country school was like at the end
of the nineteenth century. Of particular interest is the
gabled roof and the unusual curved corrugated iron roof.
They are actually two buildings which have been joined by
the inevitable pragmatic extension.
|The Snowy River from the
balcony of the Snowy River Winery
Snowy River Winery
The town also boasts a winery which is actually located on
the Snowy River and must be the highest vineyard in
Australia. Open from 10.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m. daily it sells
wines as well as offering teas and lunches. Its setting,
amongst the granite rocks on the banks of the upper limits
of the Snowy River, make it one of the most attractive
destinations in the district. To sit in front of the open
fire in winter and enjoy a good meal is a delightful way to
spend a few hours.
Eucumbene Trout Farm
The Eucumbene Trout Farm offers trout-fishing opportunities,
tours of the facility and horseriding. It is located on
Round Plain Rd and is open every day from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00
p.m. Hours are extended to 7.00 p.m. during daylight
savings, tel: (02) 6456 8866.
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