Heysen Trail at Cape Jervis – A Focus for Revegetation and Weed Control by the Warren Bonython Heysen Trail Foundation

The southern gateway to South Australia’s iconic Heysen Trail is located at Cape Jervis. The opening section of the Trail runs adjacent to the coast for approximately 10 kilometres before ascending to the Deep Creek Conservation Park at Blowhole Beach. Along this section walkers experience magnificent views across Backstairs Passage to Kangaroo Island, access to small rocky coves and patches of native scrub.

Significant flora include Eucalyptus porosa and Melaleuca lanceolata. Birds of conservation significance are the Hooded Plover (Thinornis rubricollis), Eastern Reef Egret (Egretta sacra) and the Elegant Parrot (Neophema rubricollis).

Unfortunately, it is also the case that the coastal strip is severely degraded due to soil erosion, the activity of off-road vehicles and infestation by invasive plant species. There is a need to remediate this area to provide an attractive and welcoming experience for walkers that highlights the natural attributes of this area.

The Southern Fleurieu Coastal Action Plan and Conservation Priority Study, 2007 concluded that the beaches and lower slopes of Cape Jervis, Lands End and Fishery Beach were areas of high conservation value and were also facing a high level of threat.

It was identified that the area from Deep Creek CP to Morgans Beach (to the north of Cape Jervis) includes coastal reserves that have been successfully improved by community groups. Actions that would improve connection between vegetation blocks would greatly enhance the value of the area.

The section between Cape Jervis and Fishery Beach is the responsibility of a number of land management agencies including the District Council of Yankalilla, the Coastal Protection Board, community organisations and private land holders. The Council, under the auspices of its Coastal, Estuary and Marine Officer Corey Jackson and others, has made significant improvements including the establishment of an environmental hotspot between Lands End and Fishery Beach.

The gateway section is managed by the Council and the initial section from Cape Jervis to Lands End is managed by the Coastal Protection Board. Maintenance and re-vegetation activities have also been undertaken by group of dedicated volunteers led by Dr Carolyn Schultz, the Cape Jervis Coastal Community Group. COOTS (Conservation of our Threatened Species) a subgroup of the Australia Plant Society, manage the public lands just inland from the Heysen Trail, between Lands End and Fishery Beach.

The Warren Bonython Heysen Trail Foundation has identified the Heysen Trail gateway at Cape Jervis as a focus for greening activity and will allocate volunteer resources and grant funding, where successful, to facilitate this activity.

If you are interested in further information please contact Richard Trembath on 0438 762 122 or info@WBHeysenTrailFoundation.org.au.

Biodiversity threats in the area of interest are:

  • Western Coastal Wattle (Acacia cyclops)
  • Bridal Creeper (Asparagus asparagoides)
  • Creeping Saltbush (Atriplex prostrata)
  • Wild Oat (Avena barbata)
  • Perennial Veldt Grass (Ehrharta calycina)
  • False Caper (Euphorbia terracina)
  • African Boxthorn (Lycium ferocissimum)
  • Soursob (Oxalis pescaprae)
  • Onion Weed (Asphodelus fistulosus)
  • Pincushion (Scabiosa atropurpurea)
  • Gazania (Gazania linearis)
  • Olive (Olea europaea)
  • Blue / sand lupin (Lupinus cosentinii)
  • Tufted Honey Flower (Melianthus comosus)
  • Horehound (Marrubium vulgare)
  • Apple of Soddom (Solanum linnaeanum)

Our Wednesday Twilight walks have commenced

As the walking season has come to a close, the arrival of warmer evenings and daylight saving has heralded the beginning of our Twilight Walks. There is a 1.5-2 hour walk on Wednesday nights until March.

The full programme is listed on our walk calendar but here are the details for the next four walks:

Wed 5th Dec 6pm: O’Halloran Hill

Explore tracks through the O’Halloran Hill Conservation Park before it is “renovated” into the recently proclaimed Glenthorne National Park. Distance is approx 5- 6 kms and duration maximum 2 hours. Optional dinner at the Verve Bar & Kitchen at Marion Shopping Centre.

Wed 12th Dec 6pm: Anstey’s Hill

An evening walk around Anstey’s Hill Recreation Park pathways including the original Newman’s Nursery ruins followed by dinner Fox and Firkin Hotel.

Wed 19th Dec 6pm: West Beach

Come along and enjoy a twilight walk along the West Beach seafront and River Torrens Linear Trail. Distance is approx. 5.5kms. Optional meal after the walk at The Henley Beach Hotel.

Wed 2nd Jan 6pm: Chambers Gully

Enjoy the cool sanctuary of Chambers Gully as we follow the track fringed with ferns. Cockatoos, butterflies, koalas and bandicoots love this gully.

Golden Boots passes are accepted for Twilight walks

Walk fees are $5.00 ($1.00 for walkers under 18 years of age). Remember that Golden Boots passes are accepted for Twilight walks.

Register online or via the office

If you don’t have a Golden Boots pass, you can purchase one when you register for the walk. Just click on the Golden Boots pass payment option.

Further details of our walks and walker registration can be found on our website at www.heysentrail.asn.au/walks

Get to Karka for the End of Year Bash – December 2nd 2018.

Heysen Highlights hot off the press

The End of Year Bash is on again. Make sure you are at Karka Pavilion, Belair National Park for lunch and fun on Sunday December 2nd 2018. This year we have something special – we also are launching ‘Heysen Highlights’ – Simon Cameron’s companion guide to the Heysen Trail.

The Band – Raunchy Sugar

Raunchy Sugar are returning as ‘The Band’, so this year don’t miss out on a very special event. Get your End to End group or walking friends organised and be there.

Come along to Rock and Roll or maybe just relax amongst the lush green surroundings of Karka.

The Bash

The Friends will provide: Befores, BBQ meat and artisan bread.

BYO – wine, beer or soft drink, Bring a Salad or Dessert to share.

Don’t forget a chair or rug, glass, plates & cutlery.


Book early! $20 per person. No refunds! Book at:  heysentrail.asn.au/invite     or via the office.

To assist with catering, bookings close on Friday November 30.

Park entry fees are waived for attending members and guests.

We will have Friend’s 2020 Calendars at the Bash for sale at the promotional price of $12. If you’ve already ordered a copy for collection, you will be able to pick it there.

Remember the venue: Karka Pavilion, Belair National Park. Upper Sturt Road, Belair






Reminder – Friends of the Heysen Trail 2019 calendar available for immediate delivery.

The Friends of the Heysen Trail 2019 calendar has been delivered to our Office and is now available for immediate delivery.

Order your copy now – we’ve slashed the ‘early bird’ order price.

Make sure you order your copy of the calendar before December 1 to qualify for the discounted price of $12.00.

Get one for your wall at home or work or buy some as Christmas gifts for family and friends.

Order from our On-line shop for delivery by post.

By ordering the calendar from our On-line shop you can request postage to an address in Australia or overseas. Postage charges to any address within Australia (for a single copy) will be an additional $4.50.

Pick your copy from our Office or at the End of Year Bash.

You can also order the calendar for pick up from the Office.  Contact us either by phone or email.

If you can get into the office you can take delivery yourself. Alternatively, we will have the calendar available for pick up at our End of Year Bash at Belair National Park on Sunday December 2.

However, if you can’t pick up the calendar, the Office volunteers can also arrange to have it posted to you or your gift recipient..



Telowie Gorge Conservation Park and the Napperby Block of Mount Remarkable National Park

PARK CLOSURE – Telowie Gorge Conservation Park and Napperby Block

(Mount Remarkable National Park)

across the Gulf

Telowie Gorge Conservation Park and Napperby Block (Mount Remarkable National Park) will be closed from 6am Saturday, 24 November 2018 until 11.30pm Friday, 30 November 2018.

The Park closure is for the purpose of undertaking a pest control program.

As the fire danger season has  commenced, walkers should be aware that most sections of the Heysen Trail are already closed. However, as this section of the Trail passes through a National Park and a Conservation Park, walkers would normally still have access unless a total fire ban has been announced for the day.

Therefore walkers intending to use these Parks in the near future need to be aware of this closure.

For more information about the control program or park closure, please contact the Natural Resources Centre Northern and Yorke on (08) 8841 3400.

Early seasonal closure of the Heysen Trail with Fire Danger season for Mt Lofty Ranges brought forward.

Early start to the 2018-2019 Fire Danger Season means closure of the Heysen Trail between Cape Jervis and Tanunda.

The SA Country Fire Service (CFS) has declared an early start to the fire danger season for the Mount Lofty District. As a result the trail south of Tanunda will now close on Saturday November 17th, 2018. 

Previous announcements resulted in the the trail north of Tanunda being closed to walkers since 1 November 2018.

Therefore, the entire length of the Heysen Trail from Cape Jervis in the south to Parachilna in the north, will be closed from November 17th.

The Heysen Trail south of Wirrabara will remain closed up to and including Tuesday April 30th, 2019. The Flinders Ranges Fire Danger season is expected to finish a few weeks early, so that at this stage the trail north of Wirrabara will remain closed until April 15th 2019.

Walkers advised to monitor the CFS website for changes to the closure dates.

However, as is always the case, these dates are subject to review and it is possible the trail closure may be extended. Walkers are advised to monitor the CFS website for any further announcements.

Some sections of the trail remain open over the Fire Danger Season

During the declared fire danger season some sections of the Heysen Trail remain open to walkers. They are principally the sections of the trail that are not on private land. These include public roads, Conservation Parks and Reserves, Forests and vacant land.

Please note that Conservation Parks and Reserves and Forests are closed on days of Total Fire Ban. The CFS publishes these bans, as does the Bureau of Meteorology. In addition, the media also broadcast weather reports including fire ban information.

If you want to walk on the trail, check which Fire District you will be in. The Fire Districts are listed on the Fire Danger Season page of the Friends website.

Details of the Fire Ban Districts can also be found on the Interactive Map on the Friends website.

We strongly advise you to respect the rights of landholders. Please restrict any activity which may increase the risk of fire in this period.