West Side Walk

Suburban gobblers
Lady Daly Beer Garden – art by 10TKL
Hilltop Hoods mural – Vans the Omega and Smugone
Bowden Brewing at Plant 4
Bowden Brewing
Mural by Order55 aka Seb Humphreys
West End Brewery back lane
Cawthorne Street
Salvi’s Guitars – not sure of the artist
The Wheaty
Damn you, covid

Paiwalla Wetland

The Paiwalla Wetland is a private reserve located between Mannum and Murray Bridge. Previously a dairy farm, it is now protected and serves as a refuge for flora and fauna. And snakes. SSSssss. A wonderful place to visit. Check out the website for details on how to get access. Ngarrindjeri country.

The front gates – you will need a code to get access
Donations here – I think it was $5 per person
Take these little signs seriously – we saw a brown snake the day we visited.
Looking back to the entrance
A view of both lagoons

No-name fire track

While it might seem that the only place we’ve been lately is Warren, there is always something to see whenever we walk or kayak here. We did a walk in West Warren, a half loop. We took the centre path up the hill and then turned left down the first fire track which has no identifying name. It’s overgrown in places but still easy to follow. We were careful going down the steep track as it was squelchy and mossy after recent rain.

Turn left at the star dropper
Miniature funghi
The track less travelled
Flame heath
Reservoir overflow
Rare native? Beautiful weed? So far, I can’t find evidence either way.
West Warren reservoir car park view


Warren update

Last time we went to Warren Reservoir the water was so low there were some parts of the lake we couldn’t get to. There was a lot of mud but seemed to be more birds around, including plovers fighting each other and a number of pelicans. The SA government is upgrading facilities but according to workers at the site they’ve put a hold on building a pontoon for the moment because of the water level.

Mud flats – last time we kayaked over this part of the reservoir

Little Mount Crawford

We went walking at Mount Crawford on a track which takes you around Jenkin’s Scrub and on part of the Heysen trail. It’s not signposted but detailed directions can be found in Adelaide’s Best Bush, Coast and City Walks.

Spot the emu
Looking back, pine farm on one side and scrub on the other
Handy stile for getting over the fence – note the Heysen Trail marker
Common heath just beginning to bud
Banksias are plentiful on the ridge
Near the top
Emu poo
As yet, unidentified. A weed?


Devil’s Nose

We tried out the Devil’s Nose Track in Para Wirra Conservation Park. Although it’s not that far we easily spent a couple of hours enjoying the views and wildlife. We saw a koala, a kangaroo and some emus, as well as various birds and lizards. The track is pretty easy, but there is some gravel and some clambering over rocks once the track narrows so watch your step.

spot the emu

Festival of cycling 2021

The usual cycling fest Tour Down Under was curtailed due to you-know-what. So instead in SA we had the Festival of Cycling. A race in Tanunda gave us a good reason to visit Barossa Valley Brewing for a bevy, some lunch and a great spot to view the race. For the third lap we ventured closer to the finish line. Ritchie Porte is in there somewhere…


Dead Man’s Pass – recent rains

In Outer Barossa we are blessed with many great bike/walking paths right in town. One of the best is the rather gloomily named Dead Man’s Pass. (Why so named? There’s an account for it here).

Despite the name, this is a beautiful place for a walk. Even though the new link road and bridge across the gorge have been completed, and there is a little more traffic noise, it doesn’t seem to have disturbed the wildlife. Recent rains had the river flowing.


Wilkadene above Renmark

A short river interlude. For a couple of nights we stayed near the Woolshed Brewery, at Wilkadene Cottage. Use of a kayak was a great way to burn some calories before we tried some brews. More about beer in the next post.

entering Amazon Creek
Amazon Creek continued
On the way back to the Murray River
Don’t be afraid!
Murray River cliffs on the way to Woolshed Brewery

Cowell to Whyalla

At Cowell we stopped to check out some of the op shops, but we were mainly there to see the silo art. The mural features a local identity, Lionel Deer, and one of his camels, plus a Port Lincoln Parrot in flight. Artwork by NITSUA.

Cowell’s silo art

We travelled on to Whyalla, spending a night there before heading home via Point Lowly and the cuttlefish drive. We didn’t have the gear to get in the water to see the cuttlefish, but next time. An interesting coastal drive, regardless.

Point Lowly
There’s cuttlefish out there
Cuttlefish drive, between Stony Point and Black Point
We didn’t see any cuttlefish from the road but we did spot a seal
…and some kangaroos

Port Neill to Arno Bay

Port Neill has a lovely jetty and some excellent mosaic work on the foreshore. We just took a short walk but it looked like a great place to visit for a night or two.

Our next major stop was the mangroves walk at Arno Bay. There are a number of different trails you can follow – towards the beach and into the hinterland are both good.

Arno Bay mangrove walk – beachside
Mangroves and reflections
Pigface ( I love that name)
Mangroves and reflections – part 2
Sacred Kingfisher – mangrove walk

West Coast, Lower Eyre Peninsula

Eyre Peninsula is a beautiful part of South Australia, and some of the remote coastal areas are stunning. Most of these places do not have easy access to the beach, but I like that. The beachsafe website will give you information on how tricky access can be, and surf conditions, which can be treacherous. There are no lifesavers on these beaches.

At Frenchmans we saw a large number of dolphins frolicking. Even from the cliff above we got a great view of them playing, swimming upside down, grouping and regrouping. It was a wonderful experience, and hard to tear ourselves away for the drive home.


Tumby Bay

Tumby Bay is a lovely little seaside town on lower Eyre Peninsula. And it is working hard to encourage people to visit with a yearly festival, Colour Tumby, supporting street art. Also a wonderful place to enjoy Coffin Bay oysters at the Seabreeze Hotel.

Apartment view
more jetty
section of mural by Lisa King
Mural by Elle
section of Adnate and Barngarla Collaboration
section of mural by Lolo
Coffin Bay oysters at the Sea Breeze Hotel – well, they were before we ate them. Delicious.
3D mural by Insane 51 – supposed to be viewed by the 3D viewer on the street, but it also looks cool without it
Mural by Adnate
artwork by Dvate
pavement mosaic
Tumby Bay silos – artwork by Martin Ron

One morning I went for a walk along the beach and followed a dolphin that was swimming along in the shallows scooping up breakfast.


Barossa bike ride – Lyndoch to Tanunda

The Barossa Trail runs from Gawler to Angaston. We’ve ridden the Gawler to Lyndoch section a number of times, which is a lovely ride. So for something different we did the Lyndoch to Tanunda (15k) leg. There are some hills, many more bumps than Gawler to Lyndoch, but it’s a beautiful ride with some great views. We only had a couple of pre-spring swoops, nothing serious (just past the Novotel on the way back to Lyndoch) and a persistent warning squawker around Lou Miranda.


Lincoln National Park – views, birds, flowers

Spalding Cove near Donington Cottage
Donington Beach near the lighthouse
Sunrise, Donington Cottage
Carcase Rock Beach
Carcase Rock Beach
Native apricot
Running Postman Kennedia prostrata
Port Lincoln Parrot (aka Ringneck Parrot)
Rock parrot
Kangaroo with joey
Just outside the park – Sleaford Bay (good whale watching site)
More Sleaford coastline. There is a whale and calf in the distance – trust me.

Coffin Bay town

We stayed in a cabin in the Caravan Park. There was plenty of wildlife around in the evening, and the next day we had the unexpected pleasure of a beautiful foggy morning.

Supply shop not far from the Caravan Park
Caravan Park freeloaders
Evening meeting – Galahs
Kangaroo in the mist
Views of an oyster farm on the Oyster Walk around the bay

Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden – Part 2

The Botanic Garden is just out of Port Augusta, South Australia. Although it features plants that grow in dry conditions, the variety and colour, and the abundant bird life, make it a very beautiful place to visit.

Garden Lookout – accessible from the Highway
White Winged Blue Wren (male) – all my shots were fuzzy but this shows the beautiful colour
Eremophila Hygrophana aka Blue Bells
Eucalyptus Youngiana
Flinders Ranges backdrop
Tar Bush aka Eremophila glabra


Coffin Bay National Park – Winter – 1

Eyre Peninsula is known for its fabulous beaches and stunning coastline. The Coffin Bay National Park has both in abundance. Apart from the gorgeous scenery we also saw emus, various sea birds and beautiful coastal scrub. Much of the park is only accessible by 4WD, but Almonta Beach, Point Avoid and Yangie Bay can all be reached by car.

Almonta Beach
Almonta Beach to Golden Island Lookout
Point Avoid Clifftop walk
Rockpools at the end of Flat Rock Track
Claytons Lookout
Coast Velvet Bush


Warren Reservoir – Winter

A beautiful sunny winter’s day was perfect for a first visit to Warren Reservoir. We tried the West Warren Loop (5.5 km). The longer hike is the North Warren loop which is 8.8 km. As we walked we noticed a number of fire trails which would be worth exploring, and which also provide an option to make an even shorter hike if you don’t have a lot of time. The walk is mostly pretty easy – there are some steep hills but the track is wide. Watch out for the mossy, slippery section about half way into the walk. We saw a lot of bird activity, including scarlet robins and firetails.

West Warren loop – clockwise
Waterfall outside the reservoir wall
Beware the mossy track
Red browed firetails

Kaiserstuhl Conservation Park – Winter

Last time we went to Kaiserstuhl was in Summer, and we saw a Red-bellied black snake. No snakes on this visit, but we saw plenty of kangaroos, birds and fungi. This is a beautiful park which is definitely worth a visit. The Stringybark Loop takes about an hour and is very easy walking.

Rivergum Eucalyptus
Stringybark walk
Sheoak moss
Miniature fungi – yellow
Miniature fungi – orange
Lounging kangaroos
Male fairy wren

Sandy Creek Conservation Park – Winter

Sandy Creek is one of our closest ‘out of town’ walks. On our visit there in July we spotted plenty of birds, kangaroos, and some interesting plant life. It’s also a great workout as most of the track is sand (as you might expect)…

Guinea flowers
View of the Boundary Track
Flowering Grass Tree
Red capped Robins – male and female

Para Wirra Conservation Park – Winter

North of Adelaide there are so many parks to go walking, which is perfect in these Covid times. We went for a walk in Para Wirra after eating a picnic lunch at one of the many picnic spots in the park. We tried out the Lizard Rock Hike, which is a really lovely walk. Great views without too much strenuous activity. If you try it out, just ignore the sign that makes it look like you should do the loop from the right – go left.

One of the rocky outcrops is supposed to look like a lizard. Use your imagination.

Ignore this – go left
A magpie from Central Casting hoping for some picnic crumbs
Drosera spatulata aka Sundew

Innes National Park in Winter – day one

We took a short trip to Yorke Peninsula to check out the delights of Innes National Park. The weather was perfect for walking and enjoying the fantastic views.

On our first day we took a walk on Willayama Beach which is just outside the park at Marion Bay. Within the park we checked out the Ethel Wreck, Brown’s Beach and did some short walks at West Cape Lighthouse and Inneston Historic Township.

Willyama Bay
Ethel Beach steps
Ethel Beach
Browns Beach
West Cape Lighthouse
View from West Cape Lighthouse
Scarlet Robin, Inneston

Barossa day out – Autumn

Now restrictions are starting to lift, places in the Barossa are open again for business. We went out out for a coffee at Red Door espresso and stayed out for lunch to enjoy the beautiful weather.

We checked out the new(ish) cycling and walking path connecting the Rolf Binder and Whistler wineries. On the afternoon we were there, we saw Musk Lorikeets, Red-rumped Parrots and Black Falcons chasing pigeons.

We followed up with pizza lunch and some lovely wine at Rolf Binder Winery. It was a beautiful afternoon.

On the way home we stopped by a well-known tourist site in Daveyston.


Brookfield Conservation Park

Brookfield Conservation Park is a great place to spot birds, kangaroos and appreciate a mallee landscape . You can drive safari style around the park, and there are a couple of places where you can park and go for a walk. Note most of the roads within the park are one direction only.

One of the walks takes you to the charcoal pits, where a previous resident burned wood to make coal.

Australian Ringneck Parrot
Red capped Robin

Clonlea Reserve

In the past couple of weeks we have had some rides and a walk in/through Clonlea Reserve in Gawler. It’s a very pretty park with some lovely old gum trees. A great space to exercise when you can’t go far from home.

Not sure whose billy can is hanging on the tree?
It takes a lot of fencing to close a skate park

Gawler bike ride

Everyone has to stay at home – but thankfully we are allowed to go out to exercise. Riding is the best exercise. It seems even more wonderful to be out having spent most of the week at home.

There are a number of tracks around Gawler town and the handful of times we have been out it has been relatively quiet. Plenty of hills though so doing more riding will be good for the legs.

Brookfield Conservation Park

Ngaiawang Country

Last year we visited in May. This time round we were here in July. Mallee scrub always looks pretty much the same, but there is actually a lot of colour once you get up close. And we were lucky enough to see a hairy nosed wombat and some red kangaroos too. The full safari experience (almost).

Wombat warren
Wombat pothole
Red kangaroos
Bluebush (light green)
Bluebush (blue)

Mannum Waterfalls

Meru country, Ngayawang country.

We visited the waterfalls hoping to see some water after recent rains. It was beautiful but still pretty dry. An excellent place for a walk if you don’t mind some steep steps. We parked in the lower car park which turned out to be much quieter than the upper car park at the top of the falls. Plenty of good twitching opportunities down in the gorge too.

Looking towards the upper falls
Red rumps fighting or loving, hard to say which
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