Event: Trails Less Travelled

Hike Mt Lofty from a different direction

Sunday 14 October 2018
Guided Hikes from 10:30am, Expo at Mt Lofty open from 10:30am to 3:30pm

  • Guided hikes start at 10:30am
  • Hiking Expo at summit from 10:30am to 3:30pm

Most Adelaidians are familiar with the Waterfall Gully track to Mt Lofty Summit but did you know there are at least 10 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 guided walks will start at 10:30am and will be lead by one of our member clubs so you don’t even need to read a map! 

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!

Trails Less Travelled: Hike Mt Lofty from a different direction

Hike Options

As many hikers know, there's more to hiking Mt Lofty than the popular Waterfall Gully Track. Select from one of our hikes up Mt Lofty, each walk will be led by one of our member clubs, member organisations or guest host.

All hikes begin at 10:30am on Sunday 14 October 2018, and arrive at Mt Lofty summit 3-4 hours later.

Once you're finished at the summit Hiking Expo, return to the start: with your leader (on guided-walks); or self-guide yourself; or carpool at the summit; or use public transport. Choose a walk:


The walk ratings are easy, moderate and challenging. What do these mean?

You should bear in mind that all these walks are climbing Mt Lofty, and they all have a steep 100m ascent to the summit at the end (as many who have walked the main Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty walking trail would know.)

  • Easy: generally a gentle walk on meandering trails that contour around hills. The start point is already high above the plains, so the overall the metres climbed on the hike is low.
  • moderate: comparable to the Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty walking trail.
  • challenging: a longer or steeper route.

Are the trail distances one-way or return?

All trail distances are the one-way trip from the 10:30am start point to Mt Lofty Summit.

Which walks are suitable for children?

There are 15 hike options. Most are suitable for children, but of course that depends on the age and ability of the child. The following walks would be good for children:

Do I walk back with the same host?

Host Bushwalking Clubs will offer to also walk back via the same route or a similar route. At the summit you will need to be aware of what time your walk leader will be leaving to return to the start point.

  1. You may choose to walk your own route to return, or retrace your steps.
  2. If you're hiking with a friend you could park a second car at the top before the hike, and drive back to the start in your first car. Then when you reach the top you have a car to drive down in, back to collect the first car.
  3. Adelaide Metro bus service 823 stops at Mt Lofty Summit at 10:42am, 1:42pm and 4:42pm. The bus service originates in Cleland Wildlife Park and goes to Crafers Park N Ride stop 24 (by the freeway), with connections to the city and hills.

My preferred Guided Hike is full

Host Bushwalking Clubs will be offering the guided walks and there is a capacity limit for each walk. As walks fill we may have some limited ability to add additional groups to a trail route.

What's at the Hiking Expo at the top?

Stroll among the stall holders of walking clubs, retailers, map retailers, adventure tour companies and nature based tourism businesses.

There’s fresh drinking water and toilets, or grab a coffee or bite to eat at the Summit Cafe.

Do I have to join a walk to visit the summit Hiking Expo?

Anyone can visit the Hiking Expo at the summit, entry is free.

How can I get to the Mt Lofty Summit Hiking Expo if I am not doing a walk?

The summit has limited parking, we encourage people to car pool from Crafers or to use public transport, or enjoy a walk on one of our Guided Hikes.

Car parking areas:

  1. There is some paid metered car parking available at the summit. The carparking fees at the summit are permanent and not related to the event. The parking fee is $4 regardless of duration, payment is via $1 and $2 coins or VISA and Mastercard.
  2. There is some very limited free car parking near the entrance gate.
  3. There is some further roadside car parking along Mt Lofty Summit Road.

Getting to the summit by public transport. Adelaide Metro bus service 823 departs from Crafers Park N Ride stop 24, beside the freeway off ramp, (with connections from the City and hills) heading towards Cleland Wildlife Park and stops along the way at stop 26 Mt Lofty Summit:

  1. departs Crafers at 10:04am arriving at Mt Lofty Summit at 10:10am
  2. departs Crafers at 1:04pm arriving at Mt Lofty Summit at 1:10pm

Leaving the summit by public transport. Adelaide Metro bus service 823 from Cleland Wildlife Park departs from stop 26 Mt Lofty Summit and arrives at Crafers Park N Ride stop 24 (beside the freeway) with connections to the City and hills.

  1. departs Mt Lofty Summit at 10:42am and arrives at Crafers at 10:50am
  2. departs Mt Lofty Summit at 1:42pm and arrives at Crafers at 1:50pm
  3. departs Mt Lofty Summit at 4:42pm and arrives at Crafers at 4:50pm

Which Guided Walks can use public transport to get to?

Some of the walks can be reached by Adelaide Metro bus services on the Sunday:

What do I need to wear and bring on the day?

We recommend:

  • wear some runners or hiking boots
  • wear a hat and sunblock
  • if there is a chance of rain, bring a rain jacket or umbrella
  • bring something warm to wear at the summit
  • bring 1-2L of water (water can be refilled at Mt Lofty summit)

Can I bring my dog along?

Unfortunately not, dogs are not permitted in Cleland Conservation Park, and not everyone in guided walk groups welcomes our four legged friends.


Registrations of interest are open for businesses, organisations and walking clubs to have a stall at the summit expo.