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Yass River facts for kids

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Yass River rail bridge 2.jpg
A railway bridge over the Yass River.
Yass River is located in New South Wales
Yass River
Location of the Yass River mouth in New South Wales
Other name(s) Cohen Creek
Country Australia
State New South Wales
Region South Eastern Highlands (IBRA), Riverina, Southern Tablelands, South Western Slopes
LGAs Queanbeyan–Palerang, Yass Valley
City Yass
Physical characteristics
Main source Great Dividing Range
near Wamboin
758 m (2,487 ft)
River mouth confluence with the Murrumbidgee River
Lake Burrinjuck
345 m (1,132 ft)
Length 139 km (86 mi)
Basin features
River system Murrumbidgee catchment,
Murray-Darling basin
  • Left:
    Back Creek (New South Wales), Murrumbateman Creek
  • Right:
    Cohen Creek, Black Joes Creek, Bungendore Creek, Brooks Creek, Derringullen Creek

The Yass River, a perennial river that is part of the Murrumbidgee catchment within the Murray–Darling basin, is located in the Southern Tablelands and South Western Slopes districts of New South Wales, Australia.

Course and features

Culverts under yass river walkway weir
Shared Pedestrian/Cycle walk way and weir across the Yass River in Riverbank Park, Yass

The river rises in rugged country south west of Bungendore, near Wamboin and flows generally north north west then south west, joined by seven minor tributaries, towards its confluence with the Murrumbidgee River into the impounded waters of Lake Burrinjuck, west of Yass; dropping 413 metres (1,355 ft) over its 139-kilometre (86 mi) course.


A number of competing theories exist as to the origin of the name "Yass". It is believed to be named after an Aboriginal Australian commented to explorer, Hamilton Hume, that "Yass boss, plains". An alternative theory is that Yass was named after comments made by Mr Angel, a member of Hume's exploration party, that "Yas, yas, plenty of clear country here". A third theory is that the local Aboriginal Gandangara people used the words Yarrh or Yharr as the name for the river, literally translated to mean "running water".

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