Darby/Cotters Beach is the longest on Wilsons Promontory; it is also the most exposed and energetic. The beach is accessible at the southern end, where there is a car park and short track to the beach, along the side of the shallow Darby Creek.The beach runs for 15 km,... Read more
Darby/Cotters Beach is the longest on Wilsons Promontory; it is also the most exposed and energetic. The beach is accessible at the southern end, where there is a car park and short track to the beach, along the side of the shallow Darby Creek.The beach runs for 15 km, from the steep granite headland that forms the southern boundary of Darby Beach, to the mouth of Shallow Inlet. It faces the west-south-west, receives waves averaging 1.5 m, and is exposed to the full force of the westerly winds. The waves interact with the fine, calcareous sand, to break over a 250 m wide, low gradient surf zone. More than 30 large rips, spaced about every 300 m, dominate the inner surf zone; with waves breaking further offshore on the outer bar.The beach is backed by extensive Pleistocene calcarenite, best seen at the creek mouth. These cliffs are capped by active sand dunes that extend up to several kilometres inland. Some of the calcarenite also outcrops on the beach as rocks, and in the surf as reefs, as at Buckleys Reef. Beyond Buckleys Reef the beach is known as Cotters Beach. At the northern end, the extensive ebb tidal shoals and channel of Shallow Inlet dominate the last kilometre of beach.
This is a hazardous, high energy beach, so use extreme care if bathing here. Stay close inshore on the shallow bar and well clear of the rips.
A popular spot to stop on arriving at the Promontory, to check out the size of the waves. It works best in a low to moderate swell and north-east winds, with Buckleys Reef, 2.5 km up the beach, producing good rights that are best at high tide.
The beach is quite flat but cut by rip holes.
Worth a visit to see a high energy beach and the backing new and old dunes.Read less
Beach Patrols Change Day
SLSA provides this information as a guide only. Surf conditions are variable and therefore this information should not be relied upon as a substitute for observation of local conditions and an understanding of your abilities in the surf. SLSA reminds you to always swim between the red and yellow flags and never swim at unpatrolled beaches. SLSA takes all care and responsibility for any translation but it cannot guarantee that all translations will be accurate.
General Hazard Rating: 7/10 (Highly hazardous)
Beach Key: vic118