The Dumbleyung Shire is located 267km south east
of Perth in the Wheatbelt region of Western
Dumbleyung is known for its grain and livestock
production and various biodiversity industries
summer crops, oil Mallees, yabbies, emus, poultry
Covering an area of 2551 sq km, the two towns of
Dumbleyung and Kukerin service the Dumbleyung Shire
which has a population of 605 (2011 statistics).
Both towns have all the necessary amenities and facilities
to comfortably cater for tourists and visitors. All
popular sporting and cultural organisations are available
to the community and visitors.
The name Dumbleyung is thought be derived from the
Aboriginal word ‘Dambeling’ meaning large lake or
Pioneers arrived in the district in 1875 and established
their farms out of virgin bush having to tolerate a
shortage of fresh water, finance, medical supplies
Sandalwood cutters and pastoralists began to settle
at Nippering, north of Lake Dumbleyung. By 1915 the
post office and hall were the only remaining evidence
of township at Nippering, with Dumbleyung 10km east
becoming the larger and thriving township where the
terminus of the Wagin-Dumbleyung railway was located.
The name Kukerin is thought to be a combination of
the names of two sandalwood cutters – Cooke and Ring,
omitting the ‘g’.
By about the mid 1870’s John Holland (Hollands Track)
had taken up a pastoral lease of 9,000 acres at Merilup
spring and established a sandalwood depot. Following
this period, much of the surrounding area was opened
up by the sandalwood cutters.
In 1904 the Rabbit Proof Fence was commenced, a huge
undertaking from north of Yalgoo to Point Anne in the
The arrival of the railway line to Merilup (later
renamed Kukerin) was a bonus for settlers. On 7 September
1928 the Kukerin Hotel began trading and is still operating
to this present day providing drinks, meals and accommodation.
The first recorded sighting of the lake was in 1843
by explorers, Landor and Lefroy. It is the largest
open lake in Western Australia’s southwest at 13km
in length and 6.5km wide, covering an area of 5200
Despite the extreme salinity recorded, the lake continues
to provide a habitat for many varieties of water birds.
Lake Dumbleyung received world recognition when Donald
Campbell broke the world water speed record on 31 December
1964 travelling at 276.3 miles per hour (442.08km)
in his boat ‘Bluebird’. A unique granite memorial to
Donald Campbell can be seen at Pussy Cat Hill, a prominent
feature and vantage point to view the entire lake area.