Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Lavender Federation Trail

South Australia has several long distance trails.  One of them is The Lavender Federation Trail, named after the late Terry Lavender.  The 105 kilometer trail begins at Murray Bridge (a mere 75 kms from Adelaide) and winds its way up to the Barossa Valley.  There are plans to extend it into the Clare Valley.
We have yet to explore this trail in depth, but this past winter we did get out and complete the Tungkillo Loop Trail, which is an extension of The Lavender Trail.
The head of the loop is located in Tungkillo on the Adelaide to Mannum Road. At 20 kms in length it was a perfect day trip.  We were able to complete the loop in about 6 hours.  There is parking in Tungkillo and the trail is easy to find since there are signs pointing you in the right direction.
We began the walk on dirt country roads, which took us through pastoral land and rocky outcrops.  Since we walked the trail in June, the landscape was a lush green.  The gentle rolling bright green hills contrasted magnificently with granite boulders.  This was the landscape that would accompany us for most of the 20 kms.

Pastoral Land & Granite Outcrops

About 2 kilometers into the walk we left the dirt road, and began to cut across fields.  For about the next 12 kilometers we were mainly on private land, but as long as we stayed close to the fence we were not trespassing.  This part of our walk included several fence crossing which were facilitated by conveniently placed ladders--it was great to not have to worry about opening and closing gates.

Conveniently Placed Ladder

Other reminders that we were on grazing land included herds of sheep and cows as well as signs announcing the shooting of feral animals.  In case we didn't believe about the shooting, fox carcasses were left hanging on the fences.

Fox Carcass

At about 14 kms  into our hike we left private property.  We walked the main road for about 1 km, where we once again joined a back country road to return to Tungkillo.

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