Introduction to Walk Leader Training Night. Tuesday 2nd Oct 2018.

Have you ever thought you’d like to become a Walk Leader with the Friends of the Heysen Trail?

Well, here’s your chance to see what goes on, on and off the trail.

In a low key evening we will run through the basics of being a leader and how you can get involved.

Being a walk leader is a rewarding way of sharing your favourite walks with others and a great way to get involved with the Friends.

So if this is something you’d like to hear more about, we’d love to see you on the night.

The evening is the first step in joining our team of walk leaders. We will offer further support and assistance and help you plan and lead walks.

If you are interested come on and give it a try.

Just go to the walks calendar on the website and register as you would for a normal walk.

Woodville Bowling Club, Oval Avenue,  Woodville South.

Time-7.00 to 9:30pm, including a Tea Break.

If you have any questions, please send an email to the Office and one of the leaders will contact you.

Leave only footprints, take only photographs

Leave only footprints ….

Heysen Trail walkers are well aware of the general principles related to walking which are captured by the expression “leave only footprints, take only photos”.

Many sections of the trail traverse National and Conservation Parks. It is therefore a useful reminder that the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 includes regulations about activities in parks that the general public must comply with.

Disregarding these regulations may result in park users being issued a fine.

The following extracts of these regulations are particularly relevant to us:

15 – Fires

  1. A person must not, without the permission of the relevant authority, light, maintain or use a fire in a reserve in contravention of a ban or restriction imposed by the relevant authority.

16 – Possession and use of chainsaws

  1. a person must not, without the permission of the relevant authority, have control of, carry or use a chainsaw in a reserve.

26 – Bringing animals into reserve

  1. Subject to this regulation, a person who has control of an animal must not, without the permission of the relevant authority, bring it into a reserve or permit it to enter a reserve.

30 – Interference with earth etc

A person must not, without the permission of the relevant authority—

  1. remove from a reserve any-
    1. soil, rock, mineral or similar material; or
    2. wood, mulch or other dead vegetation; or
    3. fossil or archaeological remains; or
  2. dig or otherwise intentionally disturb any soil or similar material in a reserve; or
  3. intentionally disturb any-
    1. wood, mulch or other dead vegetation in a reserve; or
    2. fossil or archaeological remains in a reserve.

Need more information?

Before you head off to a park, you can find further information about at the What you need to know section of the Department for Environment & Water website.

Of particular interest to walkers are the sections outlining the rules about the use of BBQs and lighting campfires and which parks dogs are permitted.

The Friends of the Heysen Trail 2019 calendar – final call for photos

The Friends of the Heysen Trail 2019 calendar is currently being compiled and we need your photos!

Win a free calendar!

Submit some of your photos for the 2019 calendar to be in the running for a free copy.

There is a maximum of four photos per person. If your photo is selected for inclusion in the calendar, you will receive a complimentary copy.

Photos need to be landscape shaped and meet minimum technical requirements, generally a 7 mega pixel camera on the highest image quality setting.

Closing date for contributions is September 19th.

Email your photos to

Email size can be up to 25MB (however your email provider may not allow emails of that size).

Installation of Trail Counters to Improve Data on Number of Walkers

Illustration of trackside placement

A disguised tracker unit

The Friends will be installing 3 TRAFx infrared trail counters along key sections of the Heysen Trail.

The devices count the number of trail uses giving us comprehensive data about trail use.

The TRAFx device is very compact with an unobtrusive design, which reduces risk of vandalism. They will be concealed to further prevent them being stolen or vandalised. It only uses standard AA alkaline batteries and has very long battery life.

Their placement location is yet to be decided, we’ll provide updates as we progress the planning and rollout.

In addition, there are similar trail counter in Warren Conservation Park, at the Watts Gully trailhead, which is monitored by the Walking Trails Support Group with data collated by Walking SA.

Heysen Trail closure near Calabrinda Creek campsite, Saturday June 30th.

Temporary trail closure near Calabrinda Creek

A section of the Heysen Trail near the Calabrinda Creek Campsite, will be closed to walkers for a few hours on Saturday June 30th 2018. Calabrinda Creek campsite is located between Buckaringa Gorge and Hawker in the Flinders Ranges.

The purpose of the closure is to protect public safety during the running of the Auto One Port Augusta Rally of the Ranges. The rally will be run over many closed sections of road.

We have been advised by the rally organisers that walkers will not be able to access a section of the trail between 11am to 3 pm on June 30.

Location of the trail closure

The rally is a competitive event, so the exact route will not be released prior to the day. However we know that the section of the Heysen Trail that will be closed will be along Barnes Road and may include the Calabrinda Creek Campsite.

This section is found on:

  • Heysen Trail Northern Guide Maps 4.8 & 4.9 and
  • Heysen Trail Sheetmap 7C.

As a guide, the trail closure may extend from the western end of Barnes Road, Grid Reference 354 533, to Grid Reference 430 565, which is the point that the trail leaves Barnes Road and heads in a northerly direction.

Rally organisers have advised us that all gates and roads in the vicinity will be patrolled to alert the public and walkers..

Heysen Trail closure through the Buckaringa Sanctuary, Friday 15th June to Monday 18th 2018

The Buckaringa Sanctuary will be temporarily closed this weekend. As the Heysen Trail passes through the sanctuary, we advise walkers to consider the closure if planning to walk in the area.

The planned closure is:

  • Friday evening 15 June  to Monday morning 18 June 2018.

The closure is because the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) will be undertaking feral animal control in the sanctuary. The sanctuary is home to many Yellow-footed Rock-wallabies.

The sanctuary is located between Quorn and Hawker. You can find it on map 6, chapter 4, of the Heysen Trail Northern Guidebook and on Sheet Map 7b – Dutchmans Stern Conservation Park to Mernmerna Creek.

AWC will place closure signs at all entry points to the sanctuary to warn walkers of the danger.

Fire Danger prevents access to some sections of the Heysen Trail.

Walkers are asked to observe extension of the fire danger season.

Extended closure of the Heysen Trail between Cape Jervis & Tanunda until 15 May 2018.

The Country Fire Service (CFS) has extended the Fire Danger Season for the Mount Lofty Ranges. This is due to lower than average rainfalls combined with higher than average temperatures.

This means that access to most sections of the Heysen Trail south of Tanunda will not be open until May 15, 2018.

You are advised to defer walks in these areas until further notice.

You can find information about the extension of the fire danger season in the Mt Lofty Ranges District on the CFS website.

Mid North District Fire Ban Season to End on April 30

The CFS has confirmed that fire restrictions affecting the section of the trail north of Tanunda  and south of the Wirrabara Forest will end on April 30.

Limited access to the Heysen Trail south of Wirrabara

Some sections of the Heysen Trail in the fire districts south of Wirrabara (near Laura) may still be open to walkers prior to the cessation of the fire danger periods.

The sections that remain open are principally those 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.

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

Flinders Fire Ban Season Ends

Fire restrictions in the Flinders District have been lifted, meaning the Heysen Trail is now open north of Wirrabara Forest .

This section includes Melrose, Wilmington, Quorn, Hawker, Wilpena Pound, the Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park through to the northern end of the trail at Parachilna Gorge.

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

Heysen Trail affected by closure of the Deep Creek Conservation Park – April 30 to May 4, 2018

The Heysen Trail through the Deep Creek Conservation Park will be closed from 6.00 am Monday 30 April to 12.00 am on Friday 4, 2018.

The purpose of the closure of the entire conservation park is to protect public safety during an Aerial feral animal control program.

Campsites and other walking trails in The Deep Creek Conservation Park will also be closed during this time.

The trail will be closed between Blowhole Creek and the eastern boundary of the Deep Creek Conservation Park, Tunkalilla (end of McGregor Rd track). Warning signs and trail closure signs will be placed at several locations along the trail and at the western and eastern approaches to the park.

If you have any enquiries, please call Victor Harbor  Natural Resources Centre on (08) 8552 0300. Further information can be found on the Parks SA Alerts page.

Join the Friends of the Heysen Trail before 31st May 2018.

Join the Friends of the Heysen Trail …

Become a Member before 31st May and your name goes into the draw to win a 2-day guided walk on the Heysen Trail and overnight accommodation at Heysen’s Rest B&B.

Tell your friends and ‘get out on the Trail with the Friends‘.

Financial members of the Friends of the Heysen Trail

• Support the ongoing maintenance and greening of South Australia’s premier walking trail.

• Participate in an extensive 2018 walks programme.

• Receive our full-colour 32-page Trailwalker magazine delivered to your letterbox quarterly.

• Get retail discounts on maps and books at the Friends of the Heysen Trail office in Pirie St. or online.

Discounts at many well-known outdoor and camping shops around Adelaide.

Membership Fees

We have a range of membership options to suit individuals, families and groups:

Student                                               $10
Single                                                  $25
Family                                                 $40
Schools                                               $60
Organisations                                    $60

Become a Friend of the Heysen Trail. The easiest way is to join online.  Simply go to the Friends of the Heysen website

What the lucky winner receives:

The names of all new financial members will go into the draw for a 2-day guided tour along the Heysen Trail with accommodation for two adults at Heysen Rest B&B, Myponga.

The accommodation includes complimentary beer and wine, and provisions for a cooked breakfast. The prize includes drop off at the end of your guided walk and pick up next morning from your accommodation.

The prize must be redeemed in the 12-month period following the closing date of the competition. Accommodation is limited to two adults, although the winners can bring family and guests on the guided walk.

Competition closes Thursday 31st May 2018. The winner will be drawn at random in the Friends of the Heysen Trail office in Pirie Street. The winner will be notified.

It’s on again! The Hiking Expo, Belair National Park, Sunday April 15th.

Opening of the 2018 Bushwalking Season

Come along to the Hiking Expo to celebrate the opening of the 2018 walk season.  It is the big event organised by Walking SA, the Friends and other walking groups to kick off the new walking season

When:       Sunday April 15, 2018 – 9.00am to 1.30pm.

Where:     The Gums Oval, Belair National Park.

Free entry to Belair National Park

Join in:

  • Expo of walking tours, walking destinations, outdoor retailers and walking clubs.
  • Guided hikes ranging from 45mins to 3 hours, including child-friendly and Accessible options. Guided Walks will depart every 10 minutes from 9:30am to 1pm.
  • You can secure a place on a specific guided walk by registering online or just arrive on the day and choose a guided walk to join.
  • Old Government House will be especially opened on the day by the Friends of Old Government House. Several of the guided walks include the House. Entry is by gold coin donation, with guided tours of the house and servants quarters, and self guided tours of the garden.

You can see the full list of guided walks on the Walking SA website

Join with Friends in a ‘Walk to the Expo’

In addition to one of the many walks at Belair, you can also take a longer hike to the event. The Friends have organised two longer walks to the Gums Oval at Belair National Park.

These Trailstarter walks are listed on the Walks Programme on the Friends website. You can register for these walks now.

  • Cemetery (Barr St, Mitcham) to Gums Oval

The first walk leaves from the Cemetery at Mitcham. You will walk up through the foothills and quiet gullies of Randall Park and through the quiet back streets of Belair. From Belair train station, you will enter the National Park passing through majestic endangered ecosystem of grey box woodland.

This is a 5.5 km walk and will commence at 8.00am.

Register here for the Mitcham walk.

  • Reconciliation Park (Eden Hills) to Gums Oval

This walk starts from the memorial for the stolen generation at Colebrook Blackwood Reconciliation Park. You will wander through the Wittunga Botanic Garden, and then go past the cottage garden of the historic Gamble Cottage. The route includes some of the Sea-to-Summit trail and the Adelaide 100 concept trail.

This is a 6.3 km walk and will commence at 10.00am.

Register here  for the Eden Hills walk