From Trezona, we doubled back to Wilpena to catch the afternoon shuttle in to the Pound (realising after that we could have easily walked the three kms in). Its aboriginal name is Ikara, but it is called the Pound because the formation of the cliffs created a natural corral for livestock with only one small entrance/exit. We read through the misery of the colonial settlers, who overgrazed the area on the mandate of the Government, who dictated they must run 120,000 sheep and cattle in a space that could only deal with 10,000. Bonkers.
We climbed up to the Wangara viewpoint to get a better look at the interlocking cliffs. According to indigenous stories, Ikara was formed by two giant snakes who gatecrashed a party in the area, wreaking havoc by eating everyone except for a few special souls like Kingfisher Man and Wild Turkey Man. The snakes were then so full that they willed themselves to die, and turned to stone with their heads and tails interlocking in a circle. Don’t you just love that? They were in a food coma!
Walking back from the Pound we saw our very first echidna. I think we watched him for about 20 mins, outstaying the Grey Nomads, who are supposed to be all over this nature stuff.
On our way out of the Ranges we went through Blinman, another ex-mining town that nows survives on its high quaint factor. Apparently Blinman is the highest point in all of South Australia, which isn’t saying much. We tried a quandong pie from the general store (it’s like a native peach) and then took the dirt road out of the park to Parachilna.
This drive turned out to be the most spectacular, and the most intense due to the quality of the road. It was very hilly and twisty and the second half of the road went through Parachilna Gorge, so there were chasms and boulders around every turn. Thank you GoPro gods!
Highs: The booty sway of a waddling echidna | Lows: Can’t afford the dollarydoos for a scenic flight back over the Flinders Ranges