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Black Hill Conservation Park Walks

Black Hill Conservation Park has numerous walking trails, crossing each other and has links with Yurrebilla Trail.

The name of Black Hill is given from low sheoaks foliage which turns almost black in summer. Beautiful orchids, yuccas, lobelias can be seen on your wanders. You can spot koalas, kangaroos, brown tree frogs as well as numerous birds, parrots, kookaburras.

The post describe two walks involving tracks in Black Hill Conservation Park.

Black Hill Northern Tracks

The walk explores walking trails on the northern side of the park.  The walk starts at gate 9 which can be accessed via Gorge Road which has an off street parking area.

Black Hill gate 9
Black Hill Gate 9

From the gate take the Main Ridge track which is a tough and steep climb, but worth the effort, rewarding you with amazing views over the city up to Gulf of St. Vincent.

From the Main Ridge track, you need to turn left on Ghost Tree Gully Trail for a short distance and then to follow Yurebilla Track, then Banksia Track and Black Hill Track.  Turn right to Summit trail, then Tetragona Trail, Joann Track, Ghost Tree Gully Track, Sugarloaves/ Yurebilla Track to return to car park.

Black Hill Conservation Park walks

How to get there:

By car, via Gorge Road. Drive up the Payneham Road to Lower North-East Road and turn right to Gorge Road, just past the Campbelltown Shopping Centre.

Best time for a hike is from March to November. You can walk during summer if it is not too hot. Be aware of snakes and have sturdy foot wear.

This is a 12.32 km route in Athelstone, Australia. The route has a total ascent of 692.0 m and has a maximum elevation of 481.51 m. Allow 4 hours for the walk.

It has 2 climbs category 2 with a gradient of 6.5%  and category 3  with a gradient of 7.6% as rated by map my walk.

 cat 38.28 km/10.40 km2.12 km204 m/366 m7.6%
 cat 20.10 km/4.95 km4.85 km133 m/447 m6.5%

Black Hill from Addison Avenue

The loop is starting from the Addison Avenue, Athelstone, entrance to Black Hill.

Black Hill Walks
Entrance from Addison Avenue

Take the rocky track from the Wildflower Garden to the Black Hill summit.

From the Summit go down the blocks to Montacute Rd and back up Orchard Track to the Summit Trail to return to Addison Avenue.

Elevation gain is about 700 m, total distance 10 km and takes about 3 hours and a half.

Black Hill Walks
At Black Hill Summit

Links with Yurrebilla Trail can be found at:

Yurrebilla Trail, Belair to Summertown(Opens in a new browser tab)

Yurrebilla Trail, Summertown to River Torrens(Opens in a new browser tab)

Chapmans Boobook

A hike with 2 distinct loops which involves Chapmans track in Morialta and Boobook track in Black Hill. A very scenic walk, with good training close to Adelaide.

Description

The walk starts at Montacute Road entrance to Chapmans Track, Morialta which is about 2km up from Maryvale Road.

First loop follows tracks in Morialta Conservation Park. After entering the small gate, follow the track and climb the Chapmans Track. The climb is a category 2 climb of 12.7% grade with a gain of 180 meters and a length of 1.42 km.

Chapmans Boobook
Walking on Chapmans Track
Chapmans Boobook
Up the Chapmans Track

Turn right at Moores track, then again right to Fox Hill Track, that takes you down to Montacute Road.

Chapmans Boobook
View from Moores Track
Chapmans Boobook
Walking towards Fox Hill Track

Cross Montacute road and start the second loop in Black Hill Conservation Park.

Take the Orchard trail, then turn left on Orchard track. At the junction with Eagle Track, take the left track, Kestrel Track, then continue on Falcon track and Boobook track.

This is the second climb of category 3, 6.8 % grading with a gain of 180 meters with a length of 2.64 km.

Chapmans Boobook

Exit to Black Hill Road, turn left to go downhill on the steep Orchard Track and return to Montacute Road via Orchard trail.

This was a rewarding walk with stunning views, kangaroos and koala spotted on the tracks. We have seen pockets of Garland lily on some trails but I was told there are weeds.

The total distance is of 9.24 km with an elevation of 464 meters and takes about 3.5 hours.

Internal links:

https://www.aussietrailwalker.com/morialta

Scott Creek Walks

Scott Creek is situated in Dorset Vale, 28 km South-East from Adelaide and has an extensive network of walking trails. Scott Creek is a biodiverse environment with wooded slopes and gullies. During winter months, bandicoots, possums, rabbits could be seen. In the park there are numerous natives such as Sticky hop bush, Fringe- lily, Heath Tea Tree and Golden pennant, eucalypts. Orchids flower can be abundant in spring. Most common orchids are spider orchid and wax lip orchid.

Outer Circuit Scott Creek East

Walk on Dorset Vale Road then turn left on Matthew Road.

Enter Scott Conservation Park and walk on Neville Road.

Turn left on Curranwong Ridge Track, follow the track, turning right at the intersection with Yacca Track.

Continue walking turning right at the intersection with Bronze Wing Track, then turn right on Gurr Road, turn Right on Mount Bold Ridge, turn right on Shingle Back Track, turn right again on Neville Road to return to car park.

                 Inner Circuit Scott Creek East

 

 

The second circuit is slightly shorter and similar with the first one. The difference is that from Mount Bold Ridge , turn right on Stringybark Track.

 

Scott Creek
Walking on the Stringyback Track

Scott Creek Western Side

Park at the Almanda Mine Car Park, Dorset Vale Road, Cherry Gardens.

From the Almanda Mine car park take the indistinct path up hill towards the Quarry.

Turn left and continue on Quarry Ridge Track, then turn right to follow the creek.

Cross the creek uphill to reach Green Hooded track, turn right at Thorley Road, continue to Frith Road and enter park across the road through the gate.

Follow the track and turn left before reaching the paddock, follow trail west, cross the creek and then head south east towards Marshall Road.

Follow the track along the direction of Marshall Road, then turn right and continue on the path, past unusual buildings of Pangkalilla to reach the trail at the creek crossing.

Retrace the trail than head towards Frith Road , enter through gate 21 and return via Almanda Track to the car park.

Most of the track is not marked and is best to download the GPS track for easier navigation.

Scott Creek walks
Pangkallila building

Scott Creek Exploration

From Almanda Mine car park on Dorset Vale Road, cross the road and take the Mine Shaft Track, turn left on Echidna track, turn left on Dorset Vale Road and continue on Eys Working Track and return to Mine Shaft Track to close the loop.

The second loop follows the creek then continues up the hill. It is unmarked trail and my advise is to avoid it unless you have GPS track.

Return to Almanda Mine car park. From here take the indistinct track uphill to the Quarry and turn left and follow the Quarry Ridge Track. Turn right and follow the creek, cross the creek and go uphill to reach the Green Hooded Track. Continue on the Green Hooded Track all the way to Quarry and then turn left following the track to the intersection with Almanda Track where you turn right to return to the car park.

Waite Sheoak Trail

The walk on Sheoak Trail in Waite Conservation Park, is a pleasant, scenic experience with great city views.

The walk starts at Waite Campus Park. Walk on Hartley Grove and head towards Wild Dog Trail. After a steep climb and well deserved break to admire the city views, take the Pultanaea Hill Trail. At gate 89 take the new update Sheoak Loop Trail that takes you to an geologically interesting quarry, with ripples from sea-floor of 700 millions years ago.

Waite Sheoak Trail

Turn right on Yurebilla trail, continue on Southern Boundary track, then Springfield track. Again turn right on Yurebilla trail, then Old Coach Road and down on Wild Dog Trail to return to car park.

Waite Sheoak Trail

Distance walked is 9 km and takes 3 hours. Admire on the track the new interpretative signs in the Quarry, with significant geological features, the abundant flora of natives, Clematis vitalba or Old Man’s Beard, Orchids in spring, Sundew, Pink Fingers to name a few. Another attraction was a small cave, which can be explored by young children. On the walk we encountered kangaroos and deer.

Mark Oliphant Conservation Park

Mark Oliphant Conservation Park is a small park, nestled in Adelaide Hills, nearby township of Longwood, a gem for bush walkers. The post describes walking trails in the conservation park.

The park has a mix of trails and fire tracks with lots of bush walking opportunities, suitable for families and children. Walks take you through majestic Stringybark forests and pink, blue gums.  The park is habitat for endangered Southern brown bandicoot. Native birds such Scarlet robin, Golden whistler and Rosella can been seen and heard throughout the park.

The park was named in honour of former SA Governor Sir Mark Oliphant contribution to conservation.

Bush walking

Mark Oliphant trailhead is at gate 1, 178 Scott Creek road Heathfield SA5153

The below loop walk was an exploration through Mark Oliphant conservation park following the main tracks Lofty track, Loftia track, Nioka track, Honey eater track, Thronbill track.

Description of the walk

The walk starts at gate 1 and follows the main tracks in Mark Oliphant Conservation Park, exploring the different exits and includes some no through tracks. The total distance was 10 km and the duration was 2 hours and 30 minutes. The walk is mainly on fire tracks and some small trails which can be indistinct and overgrown in some places. Total ascent was 223 meters.

Alternative walks

National Parks and Wildlife service website suggests the following trails:

1. Skink Trail Loop 3 km which starts at gate 1

2. Bandicoot Trail loop 4.5 km which starts at gate 1

3. Waterfall hike loop 2 km which starts at gate 12 and follows Thornbill track. The waterfall is large amphitheatre but does no flow often.

A description of these trails can be found on the website Walking SA at

https://www.walkingsa.org.au/

Happy walking !

DEEP CREEK CIRCUIT

Deep Creek Circuit is a challenging walk that encompasses the best parts of Deep Creek Conservation Park, from stringy bark forests to dense coastal heath vegetation. The park offers spectacular views of the Backstairs passage as far as Kangaroo Island.

Deep Creek Conservation Park is a coastal park , 90 minutes from Adelaide. Its beauty with unspoiled vegetation, majestic coastline is a major attraction for hikers. To reach the park, take the South Road via Myponga and Yankallila. Then drive past Second Valley and turn left at Delamere, following the signs to the park. Make sure you purchase the entry park pass via the internet from: https://www.parks.sa.gov.au

Deep Creek Circuit

Deep Creek Circuit
Trig Picnic Area

This hike starts at Trig Picnic Area and follows the circuit anticlockwise. This has the advantage of going up over the steep area of the coastal hike from the Deep Creek Cove .

Deep Creek Circuit
Trail head

The first portion of the circuit, follows the track from Trig Picnic area to Deep Creek Cove. At the cove, the creek finishes its journey in the ocean. The peaceful, secluded cove warrants a short break to admire the scenery, before starting the climb along the rugged coastal trek. The hike is tough, more a rock scramble but reaching the top, the views are spectacular. You could see dolphins, seals and if you are lucky even whales.

The trail leaves the coast and follows a large track to Tapannapa Lookout.

From Tappanapa Lookout you head through thick vegetation and rugged terrain to Deep Creek Waterfall. The Waterfall generally flows in winter or after rain but the waterhole is permanent. Time for a break.

Deep Creek Circuit
Deep Creek Waterfall

From the Deep Creek Waterfall take the Heysen trail to Tent Rock Road. From here, return following the road to the starting point at the Trig Picnic Area.

The total distance of the Circuit was 11 km about 4 hours with a total ascent of 389 meters.

The hikes distances are:

Trig Picnic Area to Deep Creek Cove 3.2 km

Deep Creek Cove to Tapannapa Lookout 1.7 km.

Tapanappa Lookout to Deep Creek Waterfall 3.5 km

Deep Creek Waterfall to Tent Rock Road 1.7 km

Links to other hikes in Deep Creek Conservation Park :

The Pinnacle

The Pinnacle is one of the most visited lookouts in Grampians with stunning views over Halls Gap. Most of the walks are done anti clockwise.

There are different starting points.

1. From Halls Gap camping ground walk through the Botanic Garden, through Venus Bath. Follow the track that continues to the Wonderland Car park.

2. Start at Wonderland Car park (5.5 km return)

3. Start at Sundial Car park (4,2 km return)

The hike described in this post is a shorter but harder alternative. The walk is to The Pinnacle via Mackey’s Peak in clockwise direction.

The walk starts at the Halls Gap Camping ground. After crossing the main street in Halls Gap walk straight through the camping ground pass the bridge on the right side towards the trail board that indicates The Pinnacle 3.4 km.

Follow the track and soon you will start a steep ascent with lots of stair cases. The advantage is that you avoid the crowds starting from the Wonderland car park. You will be rewarded with stunning views over the Halls Gap. Once you finish the ascent, continue to walk to the Pinnacle following the yellow triangle sign over the rocky path.

After soaking the views at the Pinnacle, return via the Wonderland Loop. Take track towards Wonderland Car park. You will pass through iconic Grand Canyon and Silent Street.

The Pinnacle
The Wonderland track

Just before reaching the Wonderland car park, turn right to return to Halls Gap via Venus Baths and Botanic Gardens. On the way you can take a detour to Splitters Falls ( can be dry in summer).

The Pinnacle
Fairy Lily

The hike has a total distance of 8.8 km. Time taken was 4.5 hours with breaks. Total ascent was 450 meters.

Lac De Presset

Lac de Presset is situated in Beaufortain region of Savoie department, south of Mont Blanc Massif. This a beautiful hike that takes you pristine alpine lake, among Ibex , with views of famous Pierra Menta.

Start the hike at the car park Chapelle de St. Guerin . Follow the road to the bridge. Cross the bridge on the other side and follow the track along the creek L’Ormente. From Refuge de la Balme (2009 m) climb to refuge de Presset (2520m ) and its lake. From here you can continue to Col Grand Fond. Return the same way. The total distance is about 14 km and takes between 5-6 hours.

The current track is missing one portion at the beginning which on the same route as the return track.

Lac De Presset
Ibex at Lac de Presset

Other hikes in France :

Tour Du Mont Blanc at

https://aussietrailwalker.com/tour-du-mont-blanc/

Tour Du Mont Blanc

Hiking around Mont Blanc, which rises in its grandness at 4810 m, will be one of the most memorable experience you will have.

Switchbacks, mountain passes, magnificent peaks and impressive glaciers will create memories that last a lifetime.

The massif is surrounded and intersected by 7 valleys that spread across 3 countries. The Swiss Valaise, Italian Aosta Valley and French Savoies are linked by history and traditions.

Most tours start at Les Houches, near Chamonix and head off in counterclockwise.

Our journey begins at Montroc and the tour was done in clockwise direction. The clockwise direction you travel against the flow and the first hours of walking the path is empty. Regarding ascents and descents the difference is not significant.

Montroc to Trient

Tour Du Mont Blanc
View from Aiguillette des Posettes

First day started in Montroc. The small village of Montroc was hit in 9th of February 1999 by a massive avalanche that killed 12 people.

From Montroc railway station go up following Argullette des Possettes to Col de Possettes 1997 m turning right towards Col de Balme 2204 m and then down to Trient via Le Peuty. Refuge de Balme at 2191 m is the Franco- Swiss border. Trient is a small village and we stayed at hotel Grand Ourse. In the village there is a beautiful pink church and cemetery worth a visit. At the end of August the Ultra Trail Mountain Marathon is organised and Trient was full of life and celebrations.

From Col de Balme you have great views towards Col de la Forclaz and Trient.

Tour Du Mont Blanc
Trient in the distance

Tour Du Mont Blanc
Pink Church of Trient


This is a 14.21 km route in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, B9, France. The route has a total ascent of 908.24 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,218.03 m . Time to destination was 5 hours.

Trient to Arpette

The second day we decided to take the higher mountain route the mythic Fenetre D’Arpette.

Tour Du Mont Blanc
View from Fenetre D’Arpette, the sweeps of scree fan down the into Val D’Arpette

From Trient cross the main road Au Village follow the road through the forest and the path towards Fenetre D’Arpette. As the Fenetre D’Arpette came into view we climbed through rocky area, pass the glacier du Trient to reach the Fenetre D’ Arpette at 2665 m the highest point of our trip. After soaking the views and catching our breath we started going down the other site to Champex . This proved to be more difficult, as we had to negotiate our way through fields of boulders.

Accomodation was at Pelais D’Arpette.


This is a 13.9 km route in Orsières, VS, Switzerland. The route has a total ascent of 1307.43 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,672.78 m.  Total time 7 hours.

Ferret to La Vachey

Bus was taken from Arpette to Ferret. From Ferret we walked on the road a bit then turned right to climb to Le Peule. Some short cuts were taken on a zig zag road, reaching a foggy Le Peule .

Tour du Mont Blanc

From Le Peule we climbed to Col Grand Ferret with beautiful vistas and the border stone between Italy and Switzerland. We started descending through pastoral scenery towards Refugio Elena. All the way you enjoy amazing scenery of the high Alps. From Refugio Elena you descend through the Val de Ferret until you reach the road and then you can take the bus to La Vachey.


This is a 12.44 km route in Orsières, VS, Switzerland. The route has a total ascent of 814.58 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,530.58 m. Time to destination 5 hours.

La Vachey to Courmayeur

From hotel La Vachey follow the road Frazione Pra Sec Dessons to Val Ferrett turn right pass Refugio Bertone tocome down to Courmayeur via Rue val Sapin

Tour du Mont Blanc
At Refugio Bertone


This is a 11.69 km route in Courmayeur, 19, Italy. The route has a total ascent of 499.35 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,063.87 m. Time 5 hours.

From Courmayeur we took the bus and walked from where we left the bus 30 minutes to Refugio Monte Bianco.

Tour Du Mont Blanc
Courmayeur

Courmayeur is the Italian equivalent of French Chamonix. The town has high end shops, numerous cafes and restaurants. It is a favorite stop for those hiking Tour du Mont Blanc.

Refugio Monte Bianco -Col De La Seigne -Les Mottets

Refuge des Mottets

From Refugio Monte Bianco ( 1670 m) turn left and climb towards the ski slope and go up to departure of the chairlift. Just before the chairlift take the small path on the left that is winding up in the forest to the Refuge of Maison Vielle. From here continue towards the Checrouit and climb to reach Refugio Elisabetta. At Refugio Elisabetta you can have your lunch and a very good coffee. From here go down via Val Veny to take the path that goes to Cassermetta of Col de la Seigne. Now Cassermetta is a centre for environmental studies and uses only renewable energy sources.

Climb some more to reach the border between France and Italy and Col de Seigne ( 2516 m ). Col de la Seigne is a pass known as far back as Roman times. A good rest at the pass and after admiring the stunning views, take the track towards Refuge des Mottets.

After 1 hour and 15 minutes you arrive at Refuge des Mottets (1870 m). The refuge has its characteristic large dining room. The meal is served at the same time for everyone. You have designated places at very long tables with plates of food being passed one from one another. Old french music played at the end made all an unique experience. The Refuge has small rooms and common showers.


This is a 20.55 km route in Courmayeur, 19, Italy. The route has a total ascent of 1288.2 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,510.13 m. Time 8 hours.

Les Mottets to Les Contamines

From refuge des Mottets follow the track to Ville des Glaciers turn right at the Chapelle pass Les Tufs to climb to Col des Fours (2661 m) among the pastures, along a stream left bank. Cross the pass, starting slightly to the left heading South/South-East. After passing at the foot of an electric pylon, the trail becomes more visible, walking on the ridge direction Col de Bonhomme(2329 m). From the Bonhomme pass take the direction La Balme-Notre Dame de la Gorge.

From Nant Borrant refuge (1463 m) continue straight along the ancient Roman road on a little more than 250 m vertical drop to Notre Dame de la Gorge. Notre Dame de la Gorge was the local parish church for the residents of the valley since the 13th century. The church was rebuilt in 1699 by Jean de Vougniaz.

Tour Du Mont Blanc

This is a 17.43 km route in Séez, B9, France. The route has a total ascent of 897.25 m and has a maximum elevation of 2,681.41 m . Time 8 hours with breaks.

La Gruvaz to Les Houches

From Les Contamines, we have been driven to the start of the trail at the intersection Route de la Gruvaz with Route de la Villette. From here we followed Route de la Villette then turn right at Chemin des Chevreuils to reach Route du Champel. We continued on Chemin de l’Ormey turning right again to Bellevue for telacabin to Prion Les Houches.

Tour Du Mont Blanc
Tramway du Mont Blanc to Bellevue

This is a 9.03 km route in Saint-Gervais-Les-Bains, B9, France.  The route has a total ascent of 954.06 m and has a maximum elevation of 1,799.51 m . Time 4 hours.

During the 7 days, we enjoyed stunning views, the genuine alpine experience and the delicious food. The trail for most of part is not technically difficult with most of the hikes between 10- 18 km and ascent and descent of 1000 meters. The GPS recording can assist with trekking but in some parts the GPS signal is lost so is very useful to have a map. General the treks are well marked . Watch out for Ibex, marmots and birds of prey.

The Tour du Mont Blanc is one of the oldest and most beautiful treks in the world, a must do on your bucket list.

Sunrise over Mont Blanc photo taken by my friend Helen

The Tour du Mont Blanc is up there with other iconic multi -day treks, Peru’s Machu Pitchu at https://aussietrailwalker.com/machu-picchu-inca-trail-cusco-peru/

and Alpe Adria Trail, Slovenia at https://aussietrailwalker.com/alpe-adria-trail-slovenia/

Mount Lofty Hiking Trails

Explore hiking trails in Mount Lofty. Mount Lofty is located close to Adelaide City centre and is popular with walkers, cyclists and tourists.

This is a list of hiking trails in Mount Lofty of different distances and levels of difficulty.

Winter Track, Pengana, Mount Lofty Loop Walk

Mount Lofty is very popular with Adelaide hikers, runners and fitness pals. Less traveled tracks are Pengana Track and Winter Track.

Winter Track, Pengana , Mount Lofty Loop Walk describes a short walk with a good hill for training. The walk has incredible views over city, making it a pleasant, short outing in Mount Lofty.

Description of the loop walk

The walk starts at Woolshed Gully Gate 11 at the address 104 Waterfall Gully Road, Waterfall Gully

Park the car in the small car park next to the Green shed. Cross the road and walk about 50 meters towards Waterfall Gully to find the sign for the start of the Winter Track and gate 11. Follow the track past the gate and after a short distance turn right at the track marked Pengana.

From here is a steep climb on the hill with an ascent of 316 meters. Reaching on the top, continue to walk on the track, watching for kangaroos lazing around near the bushes.

Continue walking forward and you will reach a signpost Pengana Spur Track which you follow. Follow the Pengana Spur track to reach soon the Perimeter track that surrounds Cleland Wildlife Park.

Here you turn left to continue on Perimeter Track, where you are greeted by emus and wallabies from the other side of the fence. Exiting the Perimeter Track follow the road and turn left at the next gate to take the Long Ridge Track. Walk along the Long Ridge Track taking in the views over the city.

Reaching the intersection with Winter track you can turn left to follow the track and return to gate 11. Optional you can walk forward for a small detour to the Long Ridge Track Lookout, for more stunning views over the city. Take a break, rest on the bench and admire the 360 degrees views.

After a deserved break, return to Winter Track to resume your journey back to the car.

The loop walk is 8.27 km and takes 2 to 2. 5 hours

Links to other walks

For a longer and more challenging walk you can go around Sugarloaf and return via the Widow Maker back to Long Ridge track. See link at https://aussietrailwalker.com/mount-lofty-training-hike/