The Heysen 64: Secretly Switchbacking

Wednesday, November 09, 2016 – 25.38 km

Today’s hike began with a beautiful walk through Montacute Conservation Park and alongside Sixth Creek. Then came an absurd hill that made me try to remember high school geometry and how to calculate the average angle of ascent. Who would have thought that I would ever need high school geometry for anything? Then I remembered that it’s 2016 and there’s probably an app that can do geometry for me, and also help me cheat on a geometry test in ten different ways. (I later calculated the angle as twenty-two degrees, but that seems too slight, so I’m just going to conclude that math = bad.) The trail is a dirt road that leads straight up, but it’s hard to believe that vehicles can navigate this track without just tumbling down and collapsing in a broken heap. They’re secretly switchbacking, I know it.

IMG_7297
80 degrees at least.
IMG_7283

After some road walking, I saw a sign saying that I was entering an area infested with Phytophthora – a fungus-like microorganism that kills native Australian flora – and only local traffic was permitted. I didn’t know whether the sign applies to foot traffic, but I couldn’t reroute without knowing the extent of the affected area, so I decided to just make sure to keep to the paved road. Presently the route entered Morialta Conservation Park, which is teeming with boot cleaning stations. I’m not sure whether the fungus is already inside the park or whether they’re trying to prevent it from entering.

IMG_7290

Morialta Conservation Park is lovely and a popular place to visit from Adelaide, judging by the number of people. I checked the U.S. election results at a lookout here and… what a stunner.

IMG_7304

There are no designated campsites between Grandpas Campsite and the Woodhouse activity centre, so I walked up a maintenance track inside the conservation park and camped off to one side.

IMG_7316

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s