Big trout gets a big friend, and it's the biggest tunnel borer in world

One of the huge tunnel boring machine sections passes through Adaminaby on Thursday morning. Photo by Andrew Smith, Snow Goose Hotel.
One of the huge tunnel boring machine sections passes through Adaminaby on Thursday morning. Photo by Andrew Smith, Snow Goose Hotel.

Out of the mist came one of the biggest and widest loads seen in the Snowy Mountains in more than 70 years - the first sections of the massive tunnel boring machine for the Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro project.

Even the Big Trout at Adaminaby had a big friend for a while as the large truck rigs passed through the small Snowy Mountains town in the early morning.

The whole Snowy Mountains Highway was closed from Adaminaby to near Kiandra for two hours as the large pieces of tunnelling parts were moved through.

Big rigs carry the tunnelling parts near Adaminaby on their way to Lobs Hole. Photo Snowy Hydro.

Big rigs carry the tunnelling parts near Adaminaby on their way to Lobs Hole. Photo Snowy Hydro.

The pieces were brought from Port Kembla, where they had arrived by ship from the tunnel borer machine manufacturer in Germany.

Motorists have been warned there will be more highway closures and temporary hold-ups as the Snowy 2.0 project gets into full gear.

Snowy Hydro said the oversize tunnel boring machine loads being delivered today were:

  • Gear ring probe drill and main seal. The dimensions are: 6.2m long, 6.1m wide, 1.530m high, 14 tonnes.
  • Front shield - Size and weight is 8.120m long, 3.95m wide, 3.81m high, and weighing 87 tonnes.

"We are very excited that the largest of the TBM parts are being delivered to site so we can start tunnelling for Snowy 2.0," Dean Lynch, Snowy 2.0 relations manager said.

"The TBM parts being delivered now will be assembled onsite starting next week and lifted into the concrete cradle that has already been constructed at the Main Access Tunnel portal.

"This is a milestone for Snowy Hydro and for the local community, who are coming with us on the journey.

"Local people are benefiting through the jobs and local investment a project of this size creates. There will be 4,000 jobs over the project's lifetime, with thousands more in the supply chain.

Passing the Big Trout at Adaminaby, Photo by Andrew Smith.

Passing the Big Trout at Adaminaby, Photo by Andrew Smith.

"Currently 66 per cent of Lobs Hole workers live within 200km of site, so that's Tumut, Tumbarumba, Cooma, Adaminaby people."

Snowy Hydro said transporting the three Snowy 2.0 TBMs involved extensive collaboration between Snowy Hydro and its principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture, and Transport for NSW and NSW Police.

"To transport the largest TBM cargo loads and for safety reasons, the Snowy Mountains Highway between the Kosciuszko National Park boundary near Adaminaby and the Link Road at Kiandra must be closed, with delays of up to two hours for motorists.

Photo courtesy Snowy Hydro.

Photo courtesy Snowy Hydro.

"All of these extremely large/wide TBM cargo loads require police and pilot escort along the transport route.

"There will be approximately 20 of these full closures on this section of the highway occurring over the next month to six weeks and members of the public should keep up-to-date by checking the www.futuregenerationjv.com.au website Traffic page and the Live Traffic app."

This story Big rigs haul tunnelling parts for Snowy 2.0 first appeared on The Land.