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©2013-16 Grant Da Costa

Car Touring and Bushwalking in the Southern Flinders Ranges - 1998

This book is the first comprehensive car touring and bushwalking guide to the magnificent Southern Flinders Ranges, covering from Telowie Gorge in the south (front cover photo) to Wilpena Pound in the north. It includes both well-known, easily visited places and wild, trackless country accessible only on foot. There are 30 specially prepared maps to guide you on your way.

The 15 Locations (places of interest), 15 Drives (tours in the car) and 38 Bushwalks cover outstanding features such as national parks, aboriginal painting and engraving sites, conservation parks, ghost towns, gorges, historic towns, lookouts, mine ruins, mountain ranges, pastoral ruins and railway relics.

The Drives total almost 1000 km and range from 20 km to 200 km in length. The Bushwalks total in excess of 280 km, ranging from 2 km to 33 km in length and one hour to three days in duration. The detailed trip planning section and regional camping summaries are indispensable.

There is something for everyone, from short trips in the car and on foot, to long car tours and extended walks through rugged terrain.

Printed book, A5, 144 pages plus 16 pages of inspiring full colour photos. Postage included. A$25.95 (Australia) /$A39.95 (Rest of World).

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This book was self-published in 1998, following the success of Car Touring and Bushwalking in East Gippsland. It benefited from the experience gained with the East Gippsland book so is much better structured. The artificial separation between car touring and bushwalking has been removed, integrating both on a regional basis.

Shortly after the book was published, a major restructuring of the area around Wilpena Pound occurred. Vehicle access was restricted, shuttle buses introduced, new feeder tracks created, and so forth. Such occurrences are a guide book author’s worst nightmare, but a constant fact of life. The gist of the walks in this area remain the same but starting and finishing places may need changing.

My original concept for the book was a single volume covering the entire Flinders Ranges, including the Gammon Ranges. I completed the field work and photography for the entire region but when I came to produce the book, starting from the southern end, I became worried about its growing size and therefore the amount I would have to pay to print it. So I decided to break it into two volumes, Southern and Northern, with the boundary north of Wilpena Pound.

I received some criticism about my choice of boundary from book reviewers. My intention was that the area around Wilpena would be an overlap region and so appear in both volumes. In hindsight I wish that I had published the book as a single volume. It may have been expensive but it would have made it a tour de force like the East Gippsland book. In the end I decided not to publish the Northern volume. This is a great shame as the walking and camping is truly wonderful and I was fortunate to acquire a superb set of images along the way. Nevertheless the Southern volume is a lovely book and the activities are very accessible.

In recent times, with the arrival of new technologies such as eBooks and print-on-demand, I have commenced a new series of guidebooks on the Flinders Ranges, starting with Arkaroola at the northern end. So in time I hope this unpublished material will see the light of day. Visit CURRENT PROJECTS for the status of this work.

Following publication of the Southern volume, I was delighted to receive a phone call from the Chief Ranger for the Southern Flinders Ranges, asking if she could purchase the right to use my photographs for a production at the main Visitor Information Centre. She made the comment that they were keen to use my images because they showed the true natural beauty of the landscape, not some contrived version that apparently is all too common amongst professional photographers.

Click on these panels to enlarge them

Please forgive the poor reproduction of the book’s pages - they are not available in digital form.

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