Rehabilitation turns old mine into aquatic playground

A little more than two hours south-east of Perth, a touch more than 15 minutes’ drive from main street of Collie, lies an aquatic attraction that promises to become one of WA’s finest.

Lake Kepwari covers the best part of 100 hectares, which for footy fans translates to more than 55 times the playing surface of Optus Stadium. Locals say it contains plenty of fish and marron and, in keeping with its name – Kepwari is a Noongar word that translates to ‘playing with water’ – the lake is also perfect for water skiing, canoeing, kayaking, swimming and pretty much any other kind of water sport you can think of.

Lake Kepwari was also, until a little less than 25 years ago, an operational coal mine. The contradiction between what the site was then and what it is now is visually stunning, not least for the workers who once spent their days extracting coal from the open cut mine known as Western Five.

Read on in the article by the team at