The Gawler Ranges National Park is an area of ancient ranges, rocky gorges, seasonal waterfalls and natural wilderness. It was proclaimed as a national park in 2002. Here there is wildlife to see, including the yellow footed rock wallaby, as well as history and Aboriginal culture. The Park is accessed 76 km from Kimba and 50 km from Wudinna. Both of these are found on the Eyre Highway, west of Port Augusta. The park might be smaller in size, but there is much to see and do there. There is something for the 2 wheel driver as well as the 4 wheel driver with several camping grounds suited for each as well as caravans.
Our group came to the park from Mt Ive Station, along good gravel roads. Once there we turned right and headed for Kolay Hut, where there is plenty of shade suitable for a lunch stop. There is also a campground here.
Not far from the hut is Kolay Mirica Falls, which were dry at this time, but the line of the falls was clearly visible across the surface of the rock. A climb to the top of the falls rewards with a stunning view across the valley in one direction. Up above the falls though, the rock formations have formed into pillars of stone, standing in neat rows along the creek line.
From there the road took us across to the northern part of the park and Pondanna Outstation. There is an old house here in immaculate condition which is available as an accommodation venue. There is also much to see around the old station house, with farm equipment, water storages and sheds still remaining on the property. Information boards explain all for the visitor.
From Pondanna Outstation our road took us to Conical Hill and to a lookout with a far reaching view across the plains below.
But it was now late in the day, so we left Gawler Ranges National Park and headed out on the Yardea Road, aiming for the road to Kingoonya. On the south western corner of Lake Gairdner is a very nice campsite, set amongst some casuarinas and wattles. There are no facilities here, only a view of the lake just around the corner, and the hillside and plain to the west.
The Gawler Ranges and our adventures there feature in our latest video Long Road to the Alice. You can see more about it and purchase your copy from our website at Travel videos of Australia.