“I Share My Trail” launch at Shepherds Hill Recreation Park

Representatives from each trail user group: walking, trail running, horse riding, cycling and mountain biking with Hon Ian Hunter MLC, Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation and Annabel Digance, Member for Elder

Representatives from each trail user group: walking, trail running, horse riding, cycling and mountain biking with Hon Ian Hunter MLC, Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation and Annabel Digance, Member for Elder

Walking SA joined with representatives of other trail user groups today at Shepherds Hill Recreation Park to commend the adoption of the “I Share My Trail” message.

We encourage all trail users to consider the safety of other users to create enjoyable trail experiences for all.

The campaign was launched by Hon Ian Hunter MLC, Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation and Annabel Digance, Member for Elder, in conjunction with Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (DEWNR), Natural Resources Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Walking SA, Trail Runners SA, Bike SA, Horse SA and Gravity Enduro Mountain Bikes.

"I Share My Trail" - we encourage all trail users to consider the safety of other users to create enjoyable trail experiences for all

“I Share My Trail” – we encourage all trail users to consider the safety of other users to create enjoyable trail experiences for all

We encourage all trail users to consider the safety of other users to create enjoyable trail experiences for all. Sharing of trails depends on mutual understanding and respect from all users. The aim is to ensure everyone, including walkers, trail runners, cyclists, mountain bikers and horse riders have a safe and enjoyable experience using shared trails.

Shared trails work well for low-volume, low-speed trails and those with good sight distances. They can also bridge hard or expensive-to-fix gaps in trail networks. Bike trails can often be shared with walkers where bike speeds are kept low. Providing for more trail users broadens the funding and support opportunities, allowing for a greater investment in the development of new trails and maintenance of existing trails.

Representatives from trail user groups at the I Share My Trail launch: walking, trail running, horse riding, cycling and mountain biking with Hon Ian Hunter MLC, Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation and Annabel Digance, Member for Elder

Representatives from trail user groups at the I Share My Trail launch: walking, trail running, horse riding, cycling and mountain biking with Hon Ian Hunter MLC, Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation and Annabel Digance, Member for Elder

Not all trails are suitable for sharing, and care must be taken to separate fast and low-speed traffic.  Walkers don’t feel safe on trails used for downhill mountain bike riding or the kind of fast flowing trail that some mountain bike riders prefer. Walkers are generally not attracted to commuter paths with fast moving or high volumes of bicycle traffic. High numbers of walkers on these trails can also impede and annoy bike riders.

There are important roles and benefits of shared trails, but there are also places where some form of separation can be cheaper as well as better for everyone’s experience of the trail. Low-speed, walking-only trails in the right place, have little impact on the environment, cost almost nothing to construct and require little maintenance.

Public Feedback Sought on Establishing Corridors to Protect Forest Trails

Public Feedback Sought on Establishing Corridors to Protect Forest TrailsThe ownership and management of the Bundaleer and Wirrabara Forests may soon change, following the Mid North Forests Future Strategy which commenced after the devastating bushfires of 2013 and 2014.

The State Government is proposing to use the Recreational Greenways Act 2000 to protect the Heysen and Mawson Trail networks for recreational access in perpetuity for use by walkers and/or cyclists. This will create a greenway over sections of the Heysen and Mawson Trails within Wirrabara and Bundaleer Forests that are proposed to be sold to private parties.

One of our member clubs, the Friends of the Heysen Trail, has some concerns with regard to the proposed changes. However, as they were only recently made aware of the proposals they are currently preparing a response. Whilst they support in-principle the use of the Greenways Act to protect the Heysen Trail and other walking trails, they are concerned that it proposes to re-route part of the Heysen Trail. Watch their website for details.

Submit your feedback via yoursay.sa.gov.au/greenways by COB Monday 12 June 2017.

Nine new walking trails in Anstey Hill Recreation Park, Park of the Month

Anstey Hill Recreation Park is National Parks SA’s Park of the Month for March.

The park has recently been upgraded as part of a $10.4m plan to upgrade and develop more walking and cycling trails, public toilets, barbecue and picnic areas, and playgrounds in national parks close to the Adelaide metropolitan area.

There are now 9 marked walking trails in the park, which is vast improvement given there were only previously some unmarked walking routes. The new trails are mostly loops and depart from various trailheads, all with new carparks and trail information boards. The new trails include 3 that are for walkers only.

We’ve outline the 9 walking trails below:

New Walking Trails for Anstey Hill Recreation Park

Wildflower Wander1.

Wildflower Wander

1.4km, 45mins to 1 hour

The Wildflower Wander is a hike up a steep hill with rewarding views over the Adelaide Plains, as well as seasonal opportunities to view wildflowers including native orchids. The quiet gullies are a haven to a variety of small birds.

Continue reading article

Advocating for Walking, March 2017 Update

Walking SA continues to represent our member clubs, organisations and individual members as well as the general walking community in matters regarding walkability of all aspects of the walking environment.

Specifically, over the last six months we have raised our voice and will continue to do so on the issue of shared paths and trails to ensure the safety of walkers using those paths and trails. We are on ongoing discussion with the Department of Environment Water and Natural Resources (DEWNR) regarding trails in the national parks that they manage as well as local councils and other bodies with jurisdiction over other paths and trails.

DEWNR is about to launch a program in recognition of that advocacy and supported by other user groups with the I Share My Trail campaign, to make all users sensitive to the needs of other users when on trails. We will provide more information as it comes to hand.

We also plan to hold a forum in May where we can get walkers and the relevant organisations together to further discuss these issues.

Walking SA, through the commitment of a number of keen volunteers, continues to monitor, liaise and in some cases object to gazetted changes to land use that will have an adverse impact upon walkers. Our voice is heard and in most cases successfully so.

In addition, we are advised of other plans that we are sought to make comment on. The latest of these are detailed below. If you wish to make comment direct please do so if you wish to advise walking SA of issues and concerns please do so and we will consolidate that into our input for each consultation.

Burnside Council

The Council seeks comment to develop a strategy for Recreation Trails Strategy within the City of Burnside.

City of Onkaparinga

The Council is seeking comment on their new Trails and Cycling Strategic Management Plan (TCSMP) which will guide the delivery of trails and cycling projects into the future. View the map of their existing and proposed trails, including the proposed Willunga Basin Trail.

Ngaut Ngaut Conservation Park

Located on the River Murray, 12km south of Swan Reach, the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources is seeking feedback on the draft management plan for the park.

Working with Recreation SA

Within the Recreation SA structure Walking SA is a member of a number of groups (Outdoor Committee, Trails Advisory Group and the Trails Forum) as advocates for the walking community in South Australia.

Recreation SA recently appointed a Trails officer, Anthony Bates, with funding from the Office for Recreation Sport to assist in the ongoing development of trails in accordance with the SA Trails Master Plan. Walking SA is working closely with Anthony already.

Recreation SA is hosting a one-day conference on Monday 3rd April 2017 which is SA’s leading professional development opportunity for managers, staff and business owners in the recreation, aquatics, parks and leisure sector.

The Eyre Trails Project Builds Momentum

The Eyre Trails Project Builds MomentumThe Eyre Trails project has been developing a concept for hiking and biking trails on the Eyre Peninsula.

During a recent meeting with stakeholders the proposed projects include:

  • a 50km+ trek trail connecting local trail networks
  • a coastal trail
  • kayak trails
  • BBQ/picnic area
  • campsites and environmental education

It is great to see the project ideas developing so well. Project partners include the District Council of Tumby Bay, Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula and Regional Development Australia Whyalla and Eyre Peninsula.

Review of the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail (KIWT)

Day 2, Maupertuis Section, Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail

The Cape du Couedic lighthouse sits tantalizingly on the horizon as the KIWT follows the cliffs south towards Hakea Campsite

The Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail is a five day hiking trail along the spectacular coastline of the south-west corner of Kangaroo Island. The trail opened in October 2016. There are campgrounds along the way. The first day in the Rocky River Section (as the Rocky River Hike), and the 5th day in the Kelly Hill Section (as the Hanson Bay Hike) can be hiked by anyone, but the middle 3 days are only accessible to people who have paid the $161 trail fee. In the Suggested Itineraries section we review shorter ways to walk the trail, including how to hike the sections as day walks.

We walked the trail in December 2016, offering the following review. Although we had earlier received an invitation, we were not guests of National Parks SA on this hike trip.

This review was originally published on the Notes from a Trailhead blog, and is reproduced here with permission.

Details about each day’s walk appears in our Find a Place to Walk directory listing for the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail.

The trail is referred to using the acronym of KIWT on some trail signage, and when using hashtags on social media (#KIWT).

Contents of this Review

Jeremy Carter, author of this review, has hiked many multi-days throughout Australia and New Zealand, including South Australia's Heysen Trail. He undertakes volunteer work and professional work with Walking SA, although this article is unpaid. He has contributed over 200 walks and trails to our Find a Place to Walk directory.

Jeremy Carter, author of this review, has hiked many multi-days throughout Australia and New Zealand, including South Australia’s Heysen Trail. He undertakes volunteer work and professional work with Walking SA, although this article is unpaid. He has contributed over 200 walks and trails to our Find a Place to Walk directory.

Our review covers the following topics, which you can jump to directly or read the whole article below:

  1. Trail Comparison
  2. Choose this trail if you like
  3. Starting the Hike
  4. Trail Conditions Underfoot
  5. Trail Signage
  6. Campgrounds
    • Large communal kitchen and dining shelter
    • The Bathroom Block
    • Campsites
    • Campground Signage
    • Extra Campground Facilities
    • Food in Campgrounds
  7. Maps
  8. Audio Tour App
  9. When to Walk
  10. Suggested Itineraries
    • 5 Day hike plan
    • 4 Day hike plan #1
    • 4 Day hike plan #2
  11. Packing List
  12. Wildlife
  13. Beaches & Swimming
  14. Bushfires
  15. Drinking Water
  16. Mobile Reception
  17. Details of each Trail Section

Continue reading article

Wirraparinga Trails Project

Map of potential Wirraparinga Trails

Map of proposed Wirraparinga Trails

An essentially no-through stick-to-the-road creek walk is being expanded as a recreational and heritage trail. Ron Bellchambers of the Brownhill Creek Association, as a walker, a retired history teacher and a neighbour of a local landowner of Springwood park, had a vision. Ron was aware of the potential of the extensive Springwood Park for its indigenous and historical heritage and for linking walking routes with Brownhill Creek, the Yurebilla Trail and Carrick Hill. The land owner was conducive to making strategic parts of his property publicly accessible.

Continue reading article

Trails Less Travelled – hike Mt Lofty from a different direction, Sunday 16th October 2016

Trails Less Travelled: Hike Mt Lofty from a different direction. Sunday October 16 2016. Hikes from 8am.Most Adelaidians are familiar with the Waterfall Gully track to Mt Lofty Summit but did you know there are at least 9 other routes that can get you to the top? Come and join one of our hosted walks and discover some of the lesser known trails exploring Cleland Conservation Park and the trails beyond.

There are walk options to suit everybody. If you’re after a serious climb along forest trails to get your heart pumping, a gentle ramble to take in the scenery or something in between then we have a walk for you. Check out the options and choose from various lengths, terrain and starting points. All walks will start at 8am and will be led by one of our member clubs so you don’t even need to read a map! Registration is free.

Once you’re at the top, you can refresh yourself at the Summit Cafe and stroll among the stall holders in the summit courtyard.

So whether it’s a new route or an old favourite, register for one of the Trails Less Travelled and we’ll see you at the summit!

Launch of two walking trails: the Sanderston Trail and Barbara Hardy Walking Trail

During August 2016 two new walking trails are being officially opened.

Lavender Federation spur trail, the Sanderston Trail, at Saunders Gorge Sanctuary

Sunday 21st August 2016
Saunders Gorge Sanctuary, Three Chain Rd, Sanderston

Sanderston Trail, 280The Sanderston Trail is a five kilometre linear trail across high ridge country adjacent to the Saunders Gorge Sanctuary. The trail has been 12 years in the making. The trail is a challenging walk with some steep sections but rewarding with spectacular scenery revealing many kilometres of unbroken dry stone walls. From the western end of the Sanderston Trail there is a six kilometre link trail connecting to the Springton Loop Trail which then intersects with the Lavender Federation Trail.

Guided walks are available at 10.00am. At 12.30pm an official opening ceremony will be held at the Three Chain Road trail head sign which is nearby the Saunders Gorge Sanctuary. This is to be followed by lunch and at 2:00pm trail walks on the Sanderston Trail and into Saunders Gorge. The Saunders Gorge walks usually attract a fee of $10 for adults, $5 children or $25 for a family but at no cost on the opening day.

Barbara Hardy Walking Trail at Hiltaba Nature Reserve

Friday 26th August 2016
Hiltaba Nature Reserve, Hiltaba, Gawler Ranges

Barbara Hardy Walking Trail, 280There are currently two walking trails on the Hiltaba Nature Reserve, with a third trail, the Barbara Hardy Walking Trail opening on Friday 26th August.

There are plans for a total of five walking trails at the Hiltaba Nature Reserve to honour the four founders of Nature Foundation and also the major supporters Bob and Betty Lewis.

Murray Coorong Trail receives $380,000 in grants to proceed

Murray Coorong Trail logoConstruction will soon start on the Murray Coorong Trail (MCT) thanks to a massive financial boost from the State Government’s Community Recreation and Sport Facilities Program.

The project was awarded $280,000, part of a State Budget allocation of more than $40million to sport and recreation facilities across South Australia.

The three Councils leading the project – Mid Murray, Coorong and Murray Bridge – will collectively contribute a further $101,700 during 2016-17. This will complete construction of 25 kilometres, being the Trail’s first stage in each district.

Once complete, the 450 kilometre trail will promote wellbeing, encourage tourism and business expansion, showcase our River and Coorong, and conserve and protect biodiversity. Work on this project began in 2012, with careful planning ensuring a purpose built trail is designed for walking and bike riding, with the eventual goal to link Cadell in the Riverland to Murray Bridge, and on to Salt Creek in the Coorong.

Mid Murray Council Mayor Dave Burgess said he expected the Trail to become a national icon, with the combined funding a coup not only for community health, but also for the region’s economy.

“The Murray Coorong Trail will help establish the Murray and Mallee as one of the most attractive recreational destinations in our State,” Mayor Burgess says.

“The trail will run along some of our most beautiful stretches of the River Murray and Coorong, showcasing our region to the growing population of walking and cycling enthusiasts who visit.”

Coorong District Council Mayor Neville Jaensch said this project would add strength to the raft of recreational activities already on offer across his district.

“We have been investing heavily in recreational facilities across our district which support people of all ages and abilities, and this major trail will connect them all,” Mayor Jaensch said.

“While the majority of the trail runs along the length of the Murray and Lakes, over time there is capacity to extend recreational opportunities to other communities.”

Rural City of Murray Bridge Mayor Brenton Lewis said the Trail would have an incredibly positive impact on the local community.

“This trail provides a facility for families, older residents, fitness enthusiasts and anyone else interested to get out and be active while exploring our beautiful local area,” Mayor Lewis says.

The Murray Coorong Trail Management Committee will begin detailed planning and community engagement before construction on each of the three Stage One sections begins later this year.

Murray Coorong Trail Fast Facts

  • The overall length of the trail is approximately 450 kilometres
  • Once complete, the trail will start at the top of the Mid Murray Council at Cadell, and run all the way through to Murray Bridge and beyond to the Coorong’s Salt Creek. Several loops and connections to existing trails will also be featured along the route.
  • The $381,700 funding will ensure Stage One in each Council district is fully constructed
  • Project planning has been underway since 2012
  • The collaborative MCT Management Committee includes representatives from all three Councils, community, State Government organisations, the Riverland and Murralands Regional Development Authority and local Aboriginal leaders
  • A feasibility study was completed on this project in 2014, which included stakeholder engagement across the region and an overall trail plan developed
  • All three Councils (and OPAL teams) already contributed funds to develop project, including its initial planning stages and developing a new logo (see image top left of page)
  • Each Council will undertake further engagement with their respective communities, before likely construction start in late 2016 / early 2017
  • It is expected that the full 450km Trail will be completed over a 10-20 year period, and is subject to external resourcing opportunities

Mid Murray Stage One

  • 10km route planned for eastern banks of the River, adjacent East Front Road from Kia Marina to Mannum
  • Close to River, taking careful consideration of local landholders and environment
  • Trail to cross River at Mannum Ferry to access facilities, services and tourism links
  • Consultation with local landholders already underway, and continues
  • Estimated cost for this Trail section is $165,000 – this includes upgrading some existing surfaces and construction of a new formalised path in some areas

Murray Bridge Stage One

  • 5km route planned to run between Toora and Hume Reserves, with exact details to be confirmed
  • A link from Lavender Federation Trail to Hume Reserve offers great opportunities
  • Consultation with local landholders already underway, and continues
  • Estimated cost for this Trail section is $79,200 – this includes the potential construction and upgrade of existing surfaces

Coorong Stage One

  • 10km route from Meningie (along Narrung Road), to The Coorong (via Seven Mile Loop Road)
  • Trail section to be developed adjacent to the roadway to suit both walking and cycling
  • Route to take in views of Lake Albert, and ends at one of the first view points of the Coorong
  • Estimated cost for this Trail section is $137,500 – this includes upgrading existing surfaces.

Murray Coorong Trail partners

Murray Coorong Trail partners

Cause for celebration – the crossing of two iconic South Australian trails

Trail Celebration
10am Sunday April 17th, 2016
Webb Gap, Mid North

Over the last eighteen months the Lavender Federation Trail has been extended by 106 kilometres, taking the end point from Eudunda to Clare, and making the trail a total distance of 320 kilometres. It now crosses the Heysen Trail at Webb Gap where the two trails will share the section that transverses the Tothill Ranges from west to east. It’s a fitting meeting of trails, as Terry Lavender played in a key part in initiating the Lavender Federation Trail, and in developing the Heysen Trail.

Two major member organisations of Walking SA, South Australian Recreation Trails Inc. and the Friends of the Heysen Trail, are celebrating this unique crossing on Sunday April 17th, 2016. There will be local walks from 10.00am onwards and there will be an official opening ceremony at Webb Gap at 12 noon.

Bushwalking Assistant Leadership Course Taking Enrolments - 580px x 350px

This Sunday: Official Opening of the 500km Walk the Yorke Trail

Walk the Yorke official openingThe Yorke Peninsula Council is launching the Walk the Yorke leisure trail this Sunday 13th December at the Port Vincent Golf Course from 10am-2pm.

Walk the Yorke is a 500km trail constructed by Yorke Peninsula Council, linking existing coastal walking trails to create a walking experience around the entire coast of beautiful Yorke Peninsula. It is a ‘shared use’ trail identified with trail markers.

View the trail map and website.

Summer Closure of high-risk Finders Ranges National Park walking trails

In the interests of public safety the following walking trails in Finders Ranges National Park will be closed from 1 December 2015 to 29 February 2016:

  • St Mary Peak inside trail
  • St Mary Peak outside trail
  • Cooinda Campsite
  • Malloga Falls Hike
  • Mount Ohlssen-Bagge Hike

The decision to close some trails this summer was made by the national park rangers after several serious incidents in previous years involving walkers who were ill-prepared, had insufficient water and low fitness levels to undertake these challenging hikes during the high temperatures. The closures will reduce the risk to walkers and potentially to emergency services personnel who undertake search and rescues over summer when temperatures are at their hottest.

All other 15 walking trails in the Finders Ranges National Park will remain open, however summer temperatures and conditions can often make bushwalking dangerous and walkers should be prepared when bushwalking.

Read more on environment.sa.gov.au.