This is one trip that I thought would be fairly straight forward to plan. Boy was I wrong! I guess I couldn’t really comprehend how large the Flinders Ranges actually are. It’s the largest Mountain range in South Australia stretching well over 430km.
We will also be visiting the Flinders Ranges National Park which is situated in the northern central part of the Flinders Ranges. The National park covers 912 km² with both the Heysen Trail and Mawson Trails pass through the park.
The plan was to head off early Friday morning and to go for a camel ride in Quorn on the way to the Flinders, but we just found out that the camel company is no longer in business or has taken some time off! How disappointing! Anyway… We will wake up and head off early as we will be driving up to Wilpena Pound and camping there overnight. Depending what time we get there (because no doubt we will get distracted!) we will set up camp and go for a short bush walk. Check out what you should pack when camping.
On Saturday we will be meeting up with Paul from Wallaby Tracks Adventure Tours.
The tour that we will be taking is the “Experience SKYTREK 4WD Track” within the boundary of Willow Springs Station, one of the Flinders Ranges most popular and exhilarating 4WD journeys:
• driving through majestic river gum lined creeks
• groves of native pines and black oak
• over bluebush plains
• through rugged mountain valleys
• ascending a mountain range
With the aid of a self-guiding map we will experience the unique and outstanding features such as
• aboriginal etchings
• natural springs
• modern and historic pastoral points of interest ( windmills, mustering yards, shepherd’s hut )
• large variety of flora and fauna
• geological features
• the tour will go for 6 –7 hours to complete the track.
Once we complete Skytrek we will spend the remainder of the day EXPLORING the Flinders Ranges National Park, including
Brachina & Bunyeroo Gorges and witnessing Yellow Footed rock Wallabies in their natural habitat.
This tour starts at 8:30am and runs until 5:30pm
4WD and the Skytrek track is something on my “to do” list, especially in such an amazing place like the Flinders – the Scenery with no doubt be breathtaking (not literally). Once we return we will pack up and head to Rawnsley Park to check into a holiday Unit to have a hot shower and relax for the evening as we have to get up early Sunday!
On Sunday we have to get up very early!! We are being picked up by “Outback Ballooning” at 5:30am or was it 5am.. Should probably double check that, either way its EARLY!
We will be taken out to an unknown (to me) location where we will help set up the hot air balloon and take off to view the amazing flinders ranges from the air!
“The beauty and complex landforms of the Wilpena Pound area can only be truly appreciated from the air. Why not add romance and a blend of adventure and tranquillity to your aerial view of the Flinders by experiencing it from an Outback balloon?
Get to know your pilot, crew and fellow adventurers during the short pre-dawn drive to your launch site of the day. Float gently across the vast expanse of the Australian Outback – keeping an eye out for native wildlife – and watch the morning light bathe the hills and ramparts. You might choose to be involved in the brief preparation as the balloon is inflated and made ready to lift you gently above the countryside.
Once in the air the balloon floats as a perfect viewing platform with no turbulence, vibration or noise – other than the occasional reassuring roar of the burner.
After returning safely to land and some fun packing the balloon back into its bag enjoy a light breakfast of exotic slices, muesli, cheese and biscuits accompanied by sparkling Australian wine or fruit juice. Back at home base you will receive your Flight Certificate to commemorate the occasion.”
Hot air ballooning is something I have always always wanted to try! To be able to see the Flinders Ranges from the air is going to be amazing! I can’t wait! And I can’t wait to show the photos to all of you (the readers!) My heart is racing at the thought that (1) we are going to see this beautiful place from the air, where most people rarely see it and (2) because I hate heights!!! It’s going to be a bit of a battle of wills between squealing with excitement and screaming because I’m not in a tin can (plane) where I can’t accidently fall out!
Since it will be around 9:30am after our “Amazing Ballooning” we will be heading out to try out one or two of the Rawnsley Park walks.
Monday we will be checking out of Rawnsley Park and heading home – I’m sad just thinking about it. The Flinders has been on my “list” for a long time! I think we are going to wing it on the way home. Maybe take the more scenic route via the Clare Valley wine route and maybe even stop and have a few wines… yum yum!