The Nook, Sunbury VIC
Freshwater Swimming Holes in Victoria


 
The Nook is a small natural lake on Jacksons Creek on the eastern edge of Sunbury, near Melbourne. Information about the history of this swimming hole is scarce, but according to a sign at the lake, The Nook was home to the local swimming club, and hosted the Sunbury Swimming Carnival every Easter in the early 20th century. It included three diving boards, changing rooms and showers, all of which are no longer evident. Swimming at The Nook on Jacksons Creek, Sunbury Above: The rope swing over the water at The Nook

The Nook is still used as a swimming hole by some locals, but this is not recommended by the managing authority. A rope swing is located on the eastern side of the lake, which you can access by climbing up the twisted gum tree that juts out over the water. You may see some people using the rope swing on hot days. The climb up the tree is precarious, and the rope is difficult to reach, so hats off to the local tree surfers who managed to tie it onto the branch and nail in the wooden steps. You can access that side of the lake from the pedestrian bridge near the car park, or by jumping across the gap in the small concrete weir at the upstream end of the lake.

Visibility in the water is non-existant, and the water quality is poor. I saw plenty of algal growth in the water, fuelled by the raft of ducks that now occupy the lake, and agricultural activities in the river upstream.
The lake was dredged for submerged logs when it was actively used for swimming carnivals, but this is no longer the case, so you can expect there to be some submerged hazards. For these reasons, I'm not recommending swimming at The Nook at the current time. You can cool your feet in the shallow weir pool (it's about shin deep most of the time) at the entrance to the lake, where you can sit on the concrete wall or the rocks that sit above the waterline. The rocks under the water here are however quite slippery.

The outlook from the hill overlooking the lake, and the surrounding parkland, is quite pleasant, so The Nook is still attractive as a picnic spot. See below for the various picnic facilities available, but a highlight is the bicycle path that runs alongside Jacksons Creek, which you can access from The Nook.

This swimming hole did not make it into my top 50 in Victoria. The main reason being the poor water quality and low visibility of underwater hazards. My favourite swimming hole west of Melbourne is only a short distance away, so if you want an amazing swim in pristine bushland not far from Sunbury, grab yourself a copy of the guide to Freshwater Swimming Holes in Victoria.
Essential Information Before You Go:
Location: Vaughan St, Sunbury, 39 km (approx. 35 min drive) north west of the Melbourne CBD
Latitude:-37.580824 Longitude:144.740763
Getting there: From Melbourne take the Tullamarine Fwy (M2) and Sunbury Road/Macedon St (C743) to Sunbury. Turn north into Vaughan St shortly after crossing Jacksons Creek as you head into Sunbury.
Facilities: Sheltered picnic tables, lawns, park benches, car park, rubbish bins, drinking fountain, bicycle path
Entrance fee: None
Water temperature: Mild
Water clarity: Murky
Under foot: Rock, pebbles and mud
Maximum water depth: Greater than 2 metres
Minimum swimming proficiency required: Experienced
Prohibitions including whether you can bring your dog: No motorbikes, dogs on leads ok. Dogs permitted off leash from 5pm to 8 am on weekends at the time of visiting, but not within certain distances of barbecues or playgrounds.
Sun shade: Shade available out of the water
Opening times: Always open
Wheelchair access: Wheelchair accessible paths
Managing authority: Hume City Council
Nearby attractions: Lerderderg Gorge
Before you head out, make sure to read the swimming safety information.
Locality Map:
The marker indicates the approximate location of the lake at The Nook.
Change of Conditions:
I am not currently aware of any change of conditions reported at this site by the managing authority, or by swimmers on this website. If you are visiting this spot and have any further updates on any change of conditions, let me know via the comment form below.
Comments:
If you have swum at The Nook, particularly when the swimming club was still active here, I would love to hear about your experiences. Please fill in the comment box below.

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