Difference between revisions of "Flinders Ranges"
Revision as of 23:34, 17 July 2010
The Flinders Ranges region covers most of the north-east of South Australia, and includes some sparse and isolated parts of the state. For most tourists, the areas most often visited are Wilpena Pound and the towns in the mid- and far north of the state, though more adventurous travellers may choose to venture beyond onto the Birdsville and Strzlecki Tracks towards Queensland and the Northern Territory.
The main town at the bottom of the Flinders Ranges is Port Augusta, which is a 3.5 hour drive from Adelaide along Port Wakefield Road (Route A1) via Snowtown and Port Pirie (both of which are bypassed). Wilpena Pound is a 4.5-5 hour drive from Adelaide, either via Port Wakefield Road, Quorn and Hawker or via the more scenic route through the Clare Valley. To venture into the Northern Flinders ranges will be a further drive, often along dirt roads. Sealed roads only run as far north as Lyndhurst (on the road to Marree) and Blinman (on the Wilpena Pound Road).
There are plenty of services currently operating to Port Augusta. Greyhound  (on the Adelaide-Alice Springs route) and Premier Stateliner  (on its Adelaide-Eyre Peninsula routes) currently operate frequent coach services through Port Augusta.
There are currently no scheduled public transport services into the central and northern Flinders Ranges, including to Wilpena Pound. The Yorke Peninsula Coaches  "Mid-North Passenger" and "Upper North Intertown" services operate in the Mid and Upper North towns, including one service weekly (currently on Fridays) as far as Quorn, but this is still a significant distance from Wilpena Pound. Travellers wishing to travel here may have to hire a car in Adelaide or Port Augusta, or find a scheduled arranged tour.
Great Southern Railways  currently operate the Indian Pacific and Ghan trains once or twice weekly to and from Adelaide, passing through Port Augusta. There are no scheduled train services further than Port Augusta, apart from the tourist Pichi Richi Railway  which runs infrequent services as far as Quorn, but is more of a tourist attraction than a means of transport.
Sharp Airlines  currently run 2 services on weekdays between Adelaide and Port Augusta (there is one service on Sundays and none on Saturdays). Port Augusta Airport is located 10 minutes' drive from the City Centre. No scheduled passenger airline flies into other areas of the Flinders Ranges.
Because of the lack of public transport, unless you are on a scheduled tour, it will more than likely be necessary to hire a car. Hitchhiking is not recommended due to the isolated areas and the extreme temperatures, especially in summer.