Over five testing days an intrepid group of 11 trekkers took on the challenge of the Flinders Ranges Adventure to raise funds to expand Melanoma Institute Australia clinical trials. We are pleased to report that all trekkers have returned safely to Adelaide with new friends, a wonderful sense of achievement and many great memories to treasure.

Here are some pics from the Flinders Ranges Adventure to give you a sense of the gruelling terrain and spectacular beauty of this inspiring trek! Scroll through the album below:

The Itinerary

Day 1 (Wednesday) – Travel from Adelaide to Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park + walk to Arkaroo Rock Hike
Hike: 3.1km (2 hours). Grade: Moderate
The first walk on the trip was to Arkaroo Rock, a significant cultural site for the Adnyamathanha people of the Flinders Ranges. The hike was to a rock shelter with rock paintings featuring ochre and charcoal images that depict the Yura Muda (Dreaming, or creation story) of Ikara (Wilpena Pound).

Day 2 (Thursday) – St Mary Peak Hike (Tanderra Saddle)
Hike: 13.5km (6 hours). Grade: Hard
Trekkers explored the highest mountain in the Flinders Ranges, St Mary Peak (1,171 metres). St Mary Peak
stands proudly above the Pound below and is central to the Adnyamathanha creation story. For this reason the traditional owners of the Flinders Ranges ask visitors not to climb to the summit of the peak and so the climb was to Tanderra Saddle, just below the summit. It was a full-day, very challenging hike, departing at sunrise with lunch on the trail and many stops to enjoy the scenery.

Day 3 (Friday) – Aroona Valley to Parachilna Gorge:
Hike: 18km (5 hours). Grade: Moderate
Trekkers followed the undulating trail through the beautiful Aroona Valley between the ABC Ranges and Heysen Ranges past abandoned mines to the final stile at the Parachilna Trailhead. That evening they enjoyed incredible views of the Chace Range at sunset from their campsite.

Day 4 (Saturday): Rawnsley Bluff Hike
Hike: 11.3 km return (5 hours return). Grade: Hard
Trekkers had a breathtaking hike in Rawnsley Park Station climbing the Wilpena Pound escarpment, which provided great views into the Pound from the Wilpena Pound Lookout, and views south and east to Chace Range. The walking trail began by following the creek bed, then climbing the foothills of the main range (Bonney Sandstone). The trail gradually steepened until they reached Lone Pine Lookout, providing views along the escarpment and to Elder Range. From here the trail took them to the summit where they were rewarded with spectacular views of the magnificent natural amphitheatre of Wilpena Pound.

Day 5 (Sunday): Alligator Gorge
Hike: 3.3km (2 hours) Grade: Moderate
Alligator Gorge is one of the Flinders best kept secrets. It was a truly stunning walk on the last day, which took the trekkers into lush gorges, meandering between water holes and then ascending into stands of Native Pine and massive River Reds. It was then time to make their way back to Adelaide via the picturesque Clare Valley.

Purpose of the Flinders Ranges Adventure 
In the last decade, Melanoma Institute Australia has built its world-leading clinical trials program. We are now saving 50% of advanced melanoma patients. However, there is more research to be done.
The Melanoma Institute Australia Flinders Ranges Adventure is aiming to raise $50,000 so we can expand our program of clinical trials, making life-saving treatments available to more patients across Australia. Please help our trekkers reach their goal by donating via the button above.
Clinical trial reform was a key recommendation in our landmark report State of the Nation, A Report into Melanoma – A National Health PriorityLaunched in early 2022, it provides a roadmap for reaching zero deaths from melanoma by 2030.

Many thanks to Goodwill Hunting Co –  our adventure partner- and to our Untamed Escapes tour guide.