Following Churchhill Fellowship awardee Ben Trewren on exploring the world best of ‘Shared-use’ Trails

I spent all day with Mitch, an Alpine Ranger, on the Rainbow Trail. What makes this trail unique is that it makes its way through Whistler’s watershed. In fact, every drop of water we saw is Whistler’s drinking water. I was really encouraged that the community has been able to appreciate that you can still recreate in such an ‘important’ area.

I spent all day with Mitch, an Alpine Ranger, on the Rainbow Trail. What makes this trail unique is that it makes its way through Whistler’s watershed. In fact, every drop of water we saw is Whistler’s drinking water. I was really encouraged that the community has been able to appreciate that you can still recreate in such an ‘important’ area.

Walking SA Board member and Churchill Fellowship recipient Ben Trewren is currently travelling and undertaking an investigation into how engaging people in outdoor trails can assist in building community through world-class ‘shared-use’ trail and outdoor experiences.

In 2018 Ben was awarded the Terry Lavender Scholarship and hopes to honour Terry’s legacy by harnessing the opportunity to uncover new ideas, attitudes and implementation strategies to further the profile and accessibility of outdoor recreation trails for all types of users.

Ben is currently travelling through Canada, having been through New Zealand and some of the United States, and will continue on to the United Kingdom, Switzerland and the Netherlands to speak to, explore and learn from the best in the outdoor industry.

In his Week One blog post from New Zealand, Ben shared how he observed a every stakeholder in a trail considers that they have a role to play – whether they be the national government, local councils, peak bodies, commercial operators, recreation clubs, community groups and the everyday users themselves.

In his Week Two post from Canada, he shared how we have perhaps attached ourselves to the idea that we’re entitled to everything the outdoors offers us. Whether it be landscapes, trails, scenic areas or facilities, and that we shirk the responsibility to give back by sharing it and inspiring other people.

You can follow his updates on his blog, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin or subscribe to email updates.

South Australians walking for recreation and health. What would encourage them to walk more?

Walking along the River Torrens in AdelaideA recent RAA SA Active Transport survey confirmed that most people who walk do so for recreation (85%) or local trips (50%) with health/fitness (81%) and relaxation being their main motivations.

Respondents suggested that they might walk more if there were better quality footpaths (46%), lighting (35%) and pedestrian facilities along the route such as water fountains.

The most effective ways of securing safety were also footpath upgrades and lighting as well as clearing vegetation and separation from other road users that travel at higher speed.

The majority of respondents were supportive of government funding being redirected from road projects onto pedestrian infrastructure.

Work continues on bringing the vision of the Adelaide 100 trail to fruition

We’ve started working through Stage 2 of bringing the Adelaide 100 trail to reality. Stage 2 is focussed on the advanced planning of some of the more complex trail connections, which will then be work-shopped with key stakeholders to seek necessary approvals, support and ongoing co-operation.

The Adelaide 100 trail is a concept for a 100km trail circumnavigating the Greater Adelaide region. The trailwill link up existing infrastructure, creating short distance links to create the full trail. Adelaide is renowned for its beautiful parks and reserves that encircle our city, enhance our suburbs, thread along our coast and feature throughout the hills. The trail will take in these beautiful areas.

Board members Rod Quintrell and Jim Mclean have been undertaking field surveys in suburban Lockleys, Basket Range and Stirling in the Adelaide Hills.
Whilst working on the planning, there’s plenty of the trail that can be walked. There is a new 1.6km section of trail in Norton Summit, heading north along Monument Road. The section is well signposted and varied in landscape and terrain, with a historic church ruin to visit along the way. The trail is undulating and presents no significant challenges to anyone of moderate fitness. The section showcases the Adelaide Hills well, and is a nice sampler of the Adelaide 100.

We have been pleased to have consistently constructive and well received feedback from stakeholders, with trail approvals achieved with the City of Campbelltown and Flinders University.

We are awaiting finalisation around trail marker positioning after a positive meeting with the team from the City of West Torrens. Other stakeholder consultations continue.

Maps of the concept trail and details of sections that are accessible now can be found on our website.

2019 Walking Awards Nominations Open

Our 2019 Walking Awards presentation will be in October 2019. We accept nominations throughout the year until mid-September.

Many volunteers and others have contributed to South Australia’s great walking trails, walking clubs, and walking promotion and opportunities for health, wellbeing, recreation and tourism.

Our annual walking awards recognise sustained and outstanding contribution to walking at all levels throughout SA. If you know of someone who should be considered for an award please do consider nominating them.

Awards categories:

  • Longstanding Contribution / Distinguished Service Award – Individual
  • Special Recognition Award – Individual
  • Special Recognition Award – Group / Organisation
  • Local Government Award – Individual
  • Local Government Award – Organisation

Criteria for awards will encompass:

  • Enhanced the development of walking in South Australia and/or
  • Significantly furthered the objectives of Walking SA and/or
  • Developed/supported the implementation of a significant walking project/activity and/or
  • Added value to the wider community of South Australia

Nominations
Nominations may be made by any South Australian nominators. Referees and nominees are not required to be members of Walking SA or of a walking club. We’ll also be pleased to consider self nominations.

For more information refer to walkingsa.org.au/awards.

Call for a state-wide walking strategy

The Heart Foundation is calling for the SA State Government to develop and fund a state-wide walking strategy to increase the number of people walking in both metropolitan and regional areas.

A walking strategy would not only be good for health, but has numerous social, economic and environmental benefits. The Heart Foundation promotes the value of walkable environments across multiple Government portfolios.

What can you do? Keep walking. Write to your local council asking for better walking facilities. Write to the Health Minister asking for a walking strategy.

Walking SA supports this agenda, and will partner with the Heart Foundation to advocate and build support from our community.

Got an idea to inspire your community to get moving? $10,000 grants up for grabs.

Have you got a new idea that helps people to get active? Your idea might be the key to get your community on the move.

More than 50% of Australians miss out on the exercise they need. Regular physical activity helps to control other heart health risks, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and being overweight.

Got an idea to inspire your community to get moving? Share it with the Heart Foundation’s Active Australia Innovation Challenge. The Challenge is awarding 8 winning ideas with up to a $10,000 grant each. Current round closes 31 July.

Explore ideas and get inspiration from 2018’s grants. Find out more at heartfoundation.org.au/active-australia-innovation-challenge

Park of the Month, Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park, July 2019

Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park is the National Parks SA Park of the Month for July 2019.

We’ve outlined the 18 walking trails in the park, and included the nearby Rawnsley Bluff Hike and Wilpena Pound Lookout Hikes.

Discover quiet gorges with ancient Aboriginal rock engravings, wander through the Pound Gap to spot wildlife and discover the struggles early Europeans encountered with the harsh Australian conditions. Or for something more adventurous, explore the trails out to Malloga Falls, Wilkawillina Gorge or St Mary Peak/Ngarri Mudlanha.

19 Walking Trails in Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park

Hills Homestead Walk1.

Hills Homestead Walk

6.6km, 2 hours return, Easy walk

Walk through the tranquil Pound Gap into Wilpena Pound. The walk begins from the trailhead at the Wilpena Visitor Centre. The start of the walk is through the Pound Gap, following Wilpena Creek through tall river red gums and pines. Choose to continue along the walking trail, which is easier, or along the dirt road which climbs above Sliding Rock – watch out for kangaroos and echidnas. The walk continues to Hills Homestead, where you can read about the original inhabitants of the cottage and their struggles with the harsh Australian conditions. There are toilets and picnic tables here


Living with Land Walk, Old Wilpena Pound Station2.

Living with Land Walk, Old Wilpena Pound Station

3.2km, 2 hour loop, Easy walk

Aboriginal people, European settlers and their descendants share the pastoral heritage of the Flinders Ranges. Undertake the self-guided walk and discover the themes of self-sufficiency, improvisation and survival in the remote and isolated pastoral settlements of the Flinders Ranges. Option to walk from a shorter 1km loop or a longer 3.2km loop.


Sacred Canyon Walk3.

Sacred Canyon Walk

800m, 30 mins, Easy walk

A short walk along a gum-lined creek leads to the site where ancient Aboriginal rock engravings are found in smooth sandstone walls. Walk through the gorge to view the images representing animal tracks, people and waterholes, have been pecked into the sheer rock faces with stone tools. Some images are very weathered and are best seen in the soft light of morning or afternoon.


Wilpena Solar Power Station Walk4.

Wilpena Solar Power Station Walk

1.2km, 30 mins, Easy walk

Discover the large Solar Power Station which supplies Wilpena with energy. A short walk to the lookout will give you a view of the set up.


Trezona Hike5.

Trezona Hike

8km, 4 hours, Moderate hike

Experience some of the Heysen Trail on this loop walk through open grassland country of Heysen Range whilst enjoying views. Discover some of the earliest life forms on earth in the Trezona geological formation.


Boom and Bust Hike6.

Boom and Bust Hike

3km, 2 hours return, Moderate hike

Take the short loop trail near the main Visitor Centre that contains a wide array of flora with a colourful display of wildflowers present in spring months. There are plenty of interpretive signs along the way outlining the wildlife and habitat. The start of the Boom and Bust Hike follows main trail through the Pound Gap then turns off onto the Mount Ohlssen Bagge Hike before looping back to the Pound Gap.


Arkaroo Rock Hike7.

Arkaroo Rock Hike

3.1km, 2 hours, Moderate hike

Walk to the rock shelter that has Adnyamathanha people rock paintings. Enjoy spectacular views of the Chace Range at sunset. Interpretive signage at the carpark trailhead.


Bunyeroo Gorge Hike8.

Bunyeroo Gorge Hike

7.5km, 3 hours 30 mins return, Moderate hike

Wander through Bunyeroo Gorge, a wide, peaceful gum-lined gorge framed by rugged rock formations. The gorge provides great opportunities for observing the native wildlife. Bullock teams and coaches transporting copper, mail and produce used the gorge in the 19th century to access the western plains.


Bunyeroo and Wilcolo Creeks Hike9.

Bunyeroo and Wilcolo Creeks Hike

9.2km, 2 hours 30 mins return, Moderate hike

Beginning in the open cypress pine woodland of the Bunyeroo Formation and Wilcolo Creek, following a small creek through the ABC Range to the gentle rolling country vegetated with silver wattle.


Bridle Gap Hike10.

Bridle Gap Hike

18.6km, 6 hours return

Experience some of the iconic 1,200km Heysen Trail by walking out to Bridle Gap, on the south-western escarpment edge of Wilpena Pound. The trail passes through the Pound Gap and past Hills Homestead, contining across the Pound floor. A variety of mallee, native pine and heath habitats provide excellent opportunities for keen naturalists to observe local birds including wrens, robins, parrots and raptors.


Aroona to Youngoona Hike11.

Aroona to Youngoona Hike

13.4km 7 hours one-way, Hard hike

Experience some of the 1,200km Heysen Trail on this hike from Aroona Campground to Youngoona Campground. This day walk tells the story of pastoral heritage with beautiful views and contrasting rock formations. You will follow the footsteps of early shepherds and discover the ruins of old pastoral runs. Pass through contrasting rock formations and plant communities while enjoying views of the ABC, Heysen and Trezona ranges.


Malloga Falls Hike12.

Malloga Falls Hike

23.2km, 9 hours return, Moderate hike

Explore the more remote trail out to Malloga Falls and Edeowie Gorge by traversing the floor of the Pound and walking out to the deep Edeowie Gorge on the north western edge. The Malloga Falls are a set of adjacent twin falls, but are usually dry. The trail is 23.2km and 9 hours return and is recommended for walkers with some experience as the trail can be hard to follow in some spots.


Mount Ohlssen Bagge Hike13.

Mount Ohlssen Bagge Hike

5.6km 4 hours return, Hard hike

A steep rocky climb to the summit of Mount Ohlssen Bagge, with rewarding views both inside and outside the Pound. Look for reptiles along the way.


Red Hill Lookout Hike14.

Red Hill Lookout Hike

8.4km, 4 hours return, Hard hike

Hike up to the top of Red Hill for views of the Aroona Valley and and south to the peaks of Wilpena Pound. The hike includes some steep fire track sections.


St Mary Peak Hike, Ngarri Mudlanha, Wilpena Pound15.

St Mary Peak Hike, Ngarri Mudlanha, Wilpena Pound

19km, 9 hours return, Hard hike

Challenging hike to the summit of St Mary Peak, the highest mountain in the Flinders Ranges. Rewarding panoramic views. Can be done as a two day hike.


Wangara Lookout Hike16.

Wangara Lookout Hike

Upper lookout: 7 km 3 hours return;
Lower lookout: 6.2km 3 hour 30 mins return
Hard hike

Walk through the Pound Gap into Wilpena Pound, and up to one of the Wangara Lookouts for panoramic views into the inside of Wilpena Pound.


Wilkawillina Gorge Hike17.

Wilkawillina Gorge Hike

12.7km, 12 hours return (7 hour return option), Hard hike

Follow Ten Mile Creek through Wilkawillina Gorge to explore the habitat of the native Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby. The permanent water source is in contrast to its drier surrounds. Starting from the Mt Billy Creek Trailhead is recommended. The hike is 12.7km and 6 hours one-way. A more manageable option would be to start from Mt Billy Creek Trailhead and hike to the eastern end of Wilkawillina Gorge where the trail leaves the gorge and turns south. This would be 7.3km one-way, so would make a 14.6km and 7 hour return hike from the Mt Billy Creek Trailhead.


Yuluna Hike18.

Yuluna Hike

8km, 4 hours, Hard hike

Experience some of the 1,200km Heysen Trail on this circuit walk, which has views of Heysen Range and the distant peaks of Wilpena Pound. This is the rugged Flinders landscape that inspired the famous artist Hans Heysen in the 1920s.


Rawnsley Bluff Hike and Wilpena Pound Lookout19.

Rawnsley Bluff Hike and Wilpena Pound Lookout

11.3km, 5 hours return, Hard hike

This spectacular hike in Rawnsley Park Station climbs the Wilpena Pound escarpment, providing views into the Pound from the Wilpena Pound Lookout, and views south and east to Chace Range.