The Heysen Trail is open for through walkers and camping … BUT the Cudlee Creek fire has caused a problem…

With the easing of COVID-19 health restrictions on May 11th, the campsites and huts along the Heysen Trail are now open to ‘through’ walkers.

The easing of restrictions means that the trail is now open for small group walks. Currently, under Step 1 of the SA Government Road Map to Recovery bushwalking is permitted, provided the group size and social distancing advice is observed.

Additionally, through walkers need to keep informed while they are on the trail. The COVID situation may change while they are on the trail and this could affect their ability to continue to walk. This particularly applies to walkers from interstate, as border crossing arrangements may change from time to time.

Before setting off on walks on the Heysen Trail, you need to be aware of the following issues:

1. Trail closure caused by the Cudlee Creek bushfire

Forestry SA has closed access to the Heysen Trail in the vicinity of Cudlee Creek, with the affected section shown on this exclusion zone map.

It covers sections of the following maps:

Heysen Trail Sheet Maps 2B & 2C and
Southern Guidebook Map 3.6.

The exclusion zone commences at the eastern exit of Montacute Conservation Park (Grid Ref 983 377) and concludes when the trail leaves Forestry property at Snake Gully Rd (GR 014 402).

Due to the location of the trail in relation to the extensive exclusion zone, finding an alternative route is presenting some difficulties. The travel restrictions caused by COVID-19 have further delayed the task. However, our Trail Development Team is attempting to find a way, but it may be some time before a re-route is approved.

All walkers are advised to avoid the area. Trail closure signs have been erected by Forestry SA. Any walker planning to walk the whole trail this year, including through Cudlee Creek should email the Friends Office to seek advice on alternative arrangements. One option would include taking vehicular transport to avoid the area.

Unfortunately the excluded area includes Grandpa’s campsite, which is now closed. Due to the extent of the fire zone and the danger of falling trees, we do not anticipate the campsite being available for several months, if at all during 2020.

As a result of this closure, there is no campsite between Woodhouse and Scotts Shelter, a distance of 76 kms. Through walkers should be aware of this, and plan accordingly. Refer to the Service Directory and Transport  for planning information.

2. On Line Bookings for Forestry SA campsites

Forestry SA has initiated an on line booking system for the following campsites along the trail:

3. Temporary closure of the Montacute Conservation park

Parks SA have advised that the Montacute Conservation Park will be closed from 6pm, Sunday 31 May until 6pm Friday 5 June 2020 for a feral pest control program. Heysen Trail walkers need to avoid the area during this period.

4. Correction to the website accommodation list – camping is not permitted in the Finniss Conservation Park

Parks SA have also advised us that the old campsite in the Finniss Conservation Park was incorrectly shown in the accommodation list as being available for camping. The campsite was closed some years ago in the interest of protecting the park.

5. Tanks – take care if you are relying on them for your water supplies

Over summer we have become aware that several of the tanks along the trail require maintenance. Due to travel restrictions caused by COVID-19, we have been unable to travel to these remote locations to fix/replace the tanks.

Fortunately, indications are that we can anticipate good winter rains. However, the supply of water in our tanks cannot be guaranteed.

So, if the walk you are planning includes Beetaloo Creek or Eyre Depot we suggest you carry additional water or arrange a water drop.

Mid North Park closures affect Heysen Trail – May 24th to June 1st 2020.

Heysen Trail walkers are advised that a number of parks in the Mid North will be closed from 6am Sunday May 24th until 6am Monday, June 1st 2020.

The park closures that will affect Heysen Trail walkers are:

  • Caroona Creek Conservation Park
  • Hopkins Creek Conservation Park

The parks will be closed for the purpose of undertaking a pest control program. Walkers will not be able to access the Heysen Trail in and adjacent to the parks during this period.

The parks are located south and north of Burra. Affected sections of the trail can be found on

  • Heysen Trail Map Sheets 3D, 4A & 4B and
  • Southern Guide Book Maps 5.10, 6.4 and 6.5

For more information about the control program or the park closures, please refer to the Parks Closure notice or contact the Natural Resources Centre Northern and Yorke on (08) 8841 3400.

Unfortunately we received late notification of this closure. When planning walks on the trail we recommend you check the Parks Alerts page to check whether parks that you intend to visit will be affected by a closure.

Prescribed Burn in Hale Conservation Park – week commencing 20th April 2020.

Heysen Trail walkers are advised that the Hale Conservation Park will be closed for several days over the week commencing Monday, 20th April 2020.

The closure will be for the purpose of DEW undertaking a prescribed burn. The burn off is most likely be held on Friday April 24th, but this may vary due to weather conditions.  The closure may affect walkers in the vicinity of the Mount Crawford Forest. The Hale Conservation Park is approx. 4 kms west of the Heysen Trail at Mt Crawford. You can find the park on Map 3.9 of the Southern Guidebook and Heysen Trail Mapsheet 2C.

Rangers will post closure signs the day before the burn on the trail coming from the Warren Conservation Park. On the day of the burn, additional signs will be posted for the two loop walks within the  Hale Conservation Park.

The Heysen Trail remains closed during the Fire Danger Season

Walkers are reminded that the Heysen Trail south of Wirrabara remains closed during the Fire Danger Season. The season ends at midnight on April 30th. Walkers can use the Heysen Trail in Parks and Forest Reserves during the fire season, except on days of total fire bans.

Cudlee Creek fire damages the Heysen Trail and other popular walking areas in the Adelaide Hills.

 

The fire ground east of Snake Gully Road, Cudlee Creek.

Heysen Trail to be re-routed around the Cudlee Creek fireground, including Grandpas campsite.

As we are all aware the recent bushfire at Cudlee Creek has caused significant damage to the forest area. As a result, Forestry SA  has closed the Cudlee Creek Forest Reserve, which includes Thomas Hill and Mount Misery to the public for safety reasons.

The Heysen Trail traverses part of the forest from Snake Gully Road through to Stone Hut Road. A temporary reroute has been plotted but has not as yet been approved  by FSA and DEW. We hope to have this finalised prior to the opening of the walk season but until then we are required to avoid the area.

When the re-route has been established we will publish it on our re-routes page. Due to the amount of work to be undertaken in the area, it may be a number of months before we can return the trail to the normal route.

This CFS Map shows the extent of the Cudlee Creek Forest exclusion zone. Please refer to it before walking in the area and abide by all signage.

There is a National parks & Wildlife Service sign at the end of Valley Rd (Montacute Conservation Park) informing people that there is no thoroughfare through Montacute CP to Forestry SA property along the Heysen Trail.

Grandpas campsite is within the fire exclusion zone and will remain closed until further notice.  Some of the infrastructure at the campsite including the rainwater tank has been damaged and will require replacement.

Temporary closure of the Montacute Conservation Park

Fortunately the nearby Montacute Conservation Park was not affected by the fire. However, Parks SA have advised that the park is currently closed for the purposes of a feral animal eradication program. In the interest of public safety, we advise walkers not to enter the park. Parks have posted closure notices at the entrances to the park.

The last closure for this operation will be held on Monday June 1st to Friday June 5th.

You can get more information on the closure, including any changes to the park closure date on the Parks SA Alert page.

Heysen Trail Closure – Southern Flinders Ranges – 22nd to 28th February 2020.

Heysen Trail walkers are advised that the following parks in the Southern Flinders Ranges will be closed from 6am Saturday, 22 February 2020 until 6pm Friday, 28 February 2020:

  • Telowie Gorge Conservation Park,
  • The Napperby Block of Mount Remarkable National Park,
  • Spaniards Gully Conservation Park and
  • Wirrabara Range Conservation Park

Walkers will not be able to access the Heysen Trail in these parks during this period.

The parks will be closed for the purpose of undertaking a pest control program. Walkers need to take note of this closure and avoid that section of the trail during those dates.

Heysen Trail closure during the Fire Danger Season

The Country Fire Service has already announced the commencement of the Fire Danger Season for the Mid North & Flinders Districts.  As a result, much of the Heysen Trail is already closed.

Some sections of the Heysen Trail may be open during the Fire Danger Season – principally those not on private land. The areas that are open (other than on total fire ban days) include Conservation Parks and Reserves, Forests, public roads and vacant land.

The closure of these conservation parks later this week therefore places additional restrictions on walkers.

Telowie Gorge Conservation park

You can get a further explanation about access to the Heysen Trail during the fire season from our Fire Danger Season webpage.

Please that the Friend’s website will be undergoing maintenance for a few days from early on Tuesday February 18th 2020. If you want to read about the fire danger season but the webpage is not available, please try again later.

For more information about the control program or park closure, please contact the Natural Resources Centre on (08) 8841 3400. Further information can be found on the Parks SA Alerts page.

Heysen Trail closing early due to 2019-2020 Fire Danger Season being brought forward

The SA Country Fire Service (CFS) has declared the Fire Danger Season will start early in the Mt Lofty Ranges, Mid North and Flinders Fire Ban Districts.

Update April 2020: the Fire Danger Season dates will end as normal (between 15 and 30 April 2020.)

This means that access to most sections of the Heysen Trail have closed to walkers earlier than expected. A dry winter and increased temperatures for spring has brought the fire season forward in these areas.

Mt Lofty Ranges Fire Ban Season commences on 15 November 2019 and ends on 30 April 2020

The Mt Lofty Ranges District includes the trail between Cape Jervis and Tanunda. The Heysen Trail between these locations will close on November 15, 2019 and will reopen on April 30, 2020.

Mid North District Fire Ban Season commenced on 1 November 2019 and ends on 30 April 2020

The Mid North District includes the trail between north of Tanunda and south of Wirrabara. The Heysen Trail between these locations closed on November 1, 2019 will reopen on April 30, 2020.

Flinders District Fire Danger Season commenced on 21 October 2019 and ends on 15 April 2020

The Flinders District covers the Heysen Trail north of Wirrabara (near Laura). The trail in 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. This section of the trail closed on October 21, 2019 and will reopen on April 15, 2020.

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. You can read more about the sections of the trail that you may walk on our Fire Danger Season page.

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. Details of the Fire Ban Districts can be found Google 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.

Heysen Trail Closure – Southern Flinders Ranges

Walkers are advised that access to the Heysen Trail in the Southern Flinders Ranges will be restricted  from 6 am  Saturday, 23 November 2019 until 6pm Friday, 29 November 2019.

Telowie Gorge Conservation Park, The Napperby Block of Mount Remarkable National Park, Spaniards Gully Conservation Park and Wirrabara Range Conservation Park  will be closed for the purpose of undertaking a pest control program.

So walkers need to take note of this closure and avoid that section of the trail during those dates.

The Country Fire Service has already announced the commencement of the Fire Danger Season for the Mid North & Flinders Districts. As a result, much of the Heysen Trail is now closed in those areas.

The sections that remain open are principally those not on private land. These include public roads, Conservation Parks and Reserves, Forests and vacant land.

For more information about the control program or park closure, please contact the Natural Resources Centre on (08) 8841 3400. Further information can be found on the Parks SA Alerts page.

Heysen Trail closure through the Buckaringa Sanctuary, Friday 13th September to Monday 16th September 2019.

Yellow-footed Rock Wallaby at Buckaringa Wildlife Sanctuary in the Flinders Ranges.

The Buckaringa Sanctuary will be temporarily closed during the second weekend in mid September . 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 13th September to Monday morning 16th September 2019.

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.

Heysen Trail closure – Caroona Creek Conservation Park: June 4-7 2019.

Caroona Creek Conservation Park : www.visitburra.com

The Heysen Trail through the Caroona Creek Conservation Park will be closed from 6.00 am Tuesday 4th June to 6.00 pm on Friday 7th June, 2019. We advise walkers to avoid the area during this period.

Parks SA has advised us that the purpose of the closure of the entire conservation park is to protect public safety during an Aerial feral animal control program.

The Caroona Creek Conservation Park is located approximately 40 kms north of Burra between Newikie Creek and the Dares Hill Summit Road.

Other park closures

Other parks affected by the closure are:

  • Red Banks Conservation Park
  • Mimbara Banks Conservation Park
  • Hopkins Creek Conservation Park

If you have any enquiries about the control program or the park closures, please contact the Natural Resources Centre Northern and Yorke on (08) 8841 3400.

You can find further information on the Parks SA Alerts page.

Heysen Trail closure through the Buckaringa Sanctuary, Friday 31st May to Monday 3 June 2019.

Yellow-footed Rock Wallaby at Buckaringa Wildlife Sanctuary in the Flinders Ranges.

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 31st May to Monday morning 3rd June 2019.

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.