Starting from the Rawnsley Bluff Carpark at the end of the Mawson Trail, near the Rawnsley Park Station, Flinders Ranges, this walk leads to Rawnsley Bluff and the Wilpena Pound Lookout via the Rawnsley Bluff Trail. Flinders Ranges has a beautiful, rugged and unique landscape with vivid red, yellow and green colours. It is a paradise for hikers, and presents a great opportunity to explore the outback of South Australia. From the carpark, the trail follows the creek bed for about 600m before you begin climbing the foothills of the main range. The trail gradually steepens to a climb until reaching the Lone Pine Lookout, from where there are views along the escarpment and towards Elder Range. From here, the worst of the climb is over and the trail becomes less steep as you approach the summit. Along the way you'll pass the Wilpena Pound Lookout, which provides an excellent view down the centre of Wilpena Pound. Further along, at the top of Rawnsley Bluff, there are panoramic views to the south and east overlooking Chace Range. This is a challenging hike, involving a very tough climb early on, and a lot of scrambling up rocks. The trail is generally well formed, and has clear signage. This hike is best suited for reasonably fit and experienced bushwalkers. Sturdy walking shoes are recommended, as the trail is very rough in places. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
Warning This journey requires significant bushwalking experience, specialised equipment and navigation skills. Please ensure you and your group well prepared and equiped for this journey.
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
Turn on to Range View Road, B83 then drive for 33.1 km
Turn left onto Railway Terrace, B83 and drive for another 66.4 km
Turn right onto Wilpena Road and drive for another 33.8 km
Turn sharp left onto Rawnsley Park Station and drive for another 3.4 km
Turn right and drive for another 1.3 km
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started Starting from the Rawnsley Bluff Carpark at the end of Mawson Trail(1.20km north of intersection with Rawnsley Park Road), head towards the metal gate along the dirt path. Pass by the brown trailhead signpost in front of the treeline keeping it to your left as you’re moving directly away from the carpark. Move parallel to the treeline and follow the dirt trail for about 275 metres from the trailhead, then keep left as the trail splits into two. Keep following the signage to continue along Rawnsley Bluff and Wilpena Pound Lookout Track.....
Directions & comments
Find the gate at the start.
At the intersection of Twidale Top Trail & Rawnsley Bluff Trail continue straight, to head along Rawnsley Bluff Trail.
After another 600 m (at the intersection of Rawnsley Bluff Trail & Fern Tree Falls Trail) continue straight, to head along Rawnsley Bluff Trail.
After another 80 m (at the intersection of Mawson Trail & Rawnsley Bluff Trail) continue straight, to head along Rawnsley Bluff Trail (a walking track).
After another 270 m continue straight, to head along Rawnsley Bluff Trail.
After another 1.9 km come to the viewpoint (10 m on your right).
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. A side trip to Wilpena Pond Lookout providing you with a great view down the centre of Wilpena Pound, as mentioned in the description. To start this optional side trip turn left here. On returning from this side trip turn left when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 125 m (at the intersection of Rawnsley Bluff Trail & Wilpena Pound Lookout) continue straight, to head along Rawnsley Bluff Trail.
After another 650 m come to the viewpoint (15 m on your right).
(Rawnsley Bluff) Continue another 710 m to find the end. Then turn around here and retrace the main route for 4.4 km to get back to the start.
A side trip to Wilpena Pond Lookout providing you with a great view down the centre of Wilpena Pound, as mentioned in the description.
Directions & comments
At the intersection of Rawnsley Bluff Trail & Wilpena Pound Lookout Start heading along Wilpena Pound Lookout (a walking track).
After another 680 m come to the end.
"Wilpena Pound Lookout".
Turn around and retrace your steps back the 680 m to the main route.
Know the Hills, grading & facilities
Rawnsley Bluff and Wilpena Pound Lookout
3 h 15 min to 5 h
Quality of track
Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
Very steep (4/6)
Clearly signposted (2/6)
No facilities provided (5/6)
Moderate level of bushwalking experience recommended (4/6)
Foretasted & unexpected storms and severe weather may impact on navigation and safety (4/6)