As quick as Lake George started to hold water due to torrential rain lashing the eastern half of Australia, the water subsided.
Heavy rain fuelled by an intense weather system on the NSW coast caused water to settle in the million-year-old lake for the first time in several years.
Brook McBride was returning to Canberra via the Federal Highway on Sunday afternoon when she saw the 25-kilometre long and 10-kilometre wide lake "almost full".
But by Monday afternoon the water was already starting to seep into the earth.
"From the rest stop it looked like it was almost full. In my lifetime, I've only seen it full a few times and not for a few years," she said.
About 65 millimetres had fallen in Canberra from 9am Sunday to 8.30am on Monday.
More than 80 millimetres was recorded in Tuggeranong during the same period.
But Australian National University geologist Patrick De Deckker said it was unlikely the weekend's soaking rain would see the lake fill to its former glory.
"You need a huge amount of water before the lake can fill up again," Professor De Deckker said.
"It's been dry for quite some time and the recent rains have bought quite a bit of water to the lake [but] it just penetrates onto the ground and joins the water table there so we'll just have to wait a few more days."
When full, the Lake George is one of the saltiest water bodies in inland NSW - almost as salty as the ocean - and can hold about 500 gigalitres.
At its height it could reach up to eight metres, which would flood the current Federal Highway, Professor De Deckker said.
"I don't think it's likely though," he said,
Until 27,000 years ago, the shallow lake drained into the Yass River.
Movement along a fault line caused the escarpment to rise, cutting the lake off from the river system.
The isolated lake has long been shrouded in mystery, with bunyip sightings and several drowning deaths adding to its sinister reputation.
By Monday morning, the sheet of water that had covered the lake bed on Sunday had sunk into the earth.
But while Lake George was more like a puddle, it didn't stop many from pulling in to have a peek though.
Truck driver Hardaypal Singh pulls over at the lake's Weereewaa rest stop twice a week. This time he brought his friend and Reghav Sherme.
"It looks more beautiful with water," he said.
Ashlee Kearney also pulled in for a gander with Luke Green on their way back from Sydney.
She said the sight was just "magical".
Diana DeSouza, who was visiting from Sydney with her daughter Isabel and husband Marcelo, said she'd heard many urban legends about the lake growing up in Canberra - some that turned out to be true.
" I always remembered the story of the kids who drowned. One day the lake will be full again," she said.
A flood warning was also in place for Queanbeyan and Oaks Estate, with the river expected to peak near 5.2 metres at 3pm on Monday in Queanbeyan and 6.1 metres in Oaks Estate.