One of the great things about living in Gippsland is that you can go swimming anywhere from the mountains to the sea. Being such a big area as Gippsland is, most parts will have their own little swimming holes that are popular with locals and others who have discovered these gems. Today I am going to introduce you to two of my favourite freshwater swimming holes in Gippsland. Surprisingly enough they are both located in Briagolong just out of Maffra. Even more surprising is that they are located on the same creek just a few kilometers from each other.

Briagolong is located 20 kilometres from Maffra and 270 kilometres east of Melbourne. Briagolong is more of a village than a town. 1 pub, bakery, cafe, shop and an art gallery make up Briagolong. This small town has a rather eclectic feel about it. The community is based around the local pub.  The pub is popular with travellers heading into the high country especially towards Dargo. Expect to see cowboy hats, check shirts and RM Williams stickers adorning the utes parked outside.

These 2 great freshwater swimming spots in Braigolong are known as the Quarries Reserve and the Blue Pools Reserve. They are both located on the Freestone Creek in the foothills of the Great Dividing Range. The Freestone Creek runs off Lees Creek in the mountains and meets up with the Avon River near Stratford.

The Quarries Reserve Briagolong

The Freestone Creek Australia
One of the swimming area’s at the Quarries. Water levels were down the day i captured this image

The Quarries Reserve is located 2.6km from Briagolong on the Freestone Creek Road. You wind your way down into the Quarries on a sealed road with speed humps. What opens up before your eyes is a bush setting with giant gum trees rising up, birds chirping and the sounds of the creek running.  The Quarries reserve is wedged between the elevated road and the Freestone Creek. 

The Reserve is split into 2 sections. At one end is a shed with fireplaces and a playground for the kids. The shed has a picnic table inside for limited seating. At the other end of the reserve is the camping area. This area has a few firepits, picnic table and an exposed shelter to sit and eat under. There are toilets available on site with cold showers.

Access to the Freestone Creek is available all along the reserve. The main swimming area is located near the shed and the playground area. Here you will find a nice water hole with clear running water. Camping at the Quarries reserve is $10 a night payable at the local store in Briagolong. One thing you must remember is that the Reserve is a carry in, carry out park. what you take in you must take out with you. Talk about a budget family getaway for a few nights! 

The Blue Pools Briagolong

The Blue Pools Briagolong is also located on Free Stone Creek Road. It is a bit further along from the Quarries at around 8.5km from Briagolong.  The Blue Pools consists of two separate car parks, free camping area and the Blue Pools swimming hole. Get all your camping gear HERE

The Blue Pools is a popular free canoeing Gippsland site. You will find plenty of space, picnic tables, fire pits and 1 toilet. Yes, just 1 single cubicle for use. The campground is dirty and dusty just to be warned with very little grass and again it is a carry in, carry out site.

Walking path at the Blue Pools
The Path leading from the car park to the swimming area at the Blue Pools

The Briagolong Blue Pools swimming area is large much larger than the Quarries. As a kid, we used to enjoy jumping off the high rocks into the water at the gorge of the Blue Pools. It used to seem so high with the water so far away. In reality, the jump was about 3.5 meters. The kids of today have taken to using ropes to swing of the trees into the water. The Blue Pools is like a bay of sorts. There is a semi-circle of sand and rocks that ring the water with a tiny creek flowing to the side as the hills rise directly up  creating a gorge

The Blue Pools Briagolong Gippsland Australia
Swimming area of the of the Blue Pools

The water at Blue Pools gets deep very quick. So be a good swimmer or be prepared at the least. There are some amazing bush walks that start off from the car park. The Bluff walk is short but leads off on a steep rise to the top of the gorge. The Peregrine Lookout is a little more serious. The circuit from Blue Pool to the Peregrine lookout takes about an hour return. 
The lookout is aptly names after the Peregrine Falcon. The Falcon nests nearby from September to December each year 

Drone picture of the Blue Pools
The Blue Pools from way above

Insiders Tip: On the road between the Quarries and the Blue Pools is another swimming spot. It is virtually unknown to many. There is no facilities, there is no car park. Its called the Blue Mark. You may see a faint blue circle on a tree and dirt shoulder on the side of the road. There is a narrow bush track that winds its way down the hill to the Blue Mark. The Blue Mark is another quality swimming spot on the Freestone Creek

Looking for something to do this weekend? If the weather is hot get in the car and visit these two great Gippsland Freshwater swimming spots.

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Blue Pools Briagolong
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