Steepest climbs in SA?

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Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby danman » Sun 01 May, 2016 8:14 pm

I know SA isn't really blessed with a whole lot of peaks over 1000m, but I'm hoping there are still some nice climbs around! I do like a good steep climb to get the lungs going and the heart rate up.

I enjoyed (not sure if that's the word..) the staircase spur of Mt Bogong and I know we obviously won't have any climb that length, but surely there must be some good climbs that are 20%+ gradient for 2 or 3 kms at least?

Around Adelaide I know of the Pengana (Not sure on name) Track at waterfall gully, which is quite steep but also quite short. Also a few sections of Mt Lofty which are moderately steep.

St Marys Peak from memory is mostly pretty flat until the last 1.5km or so? You start from a fairly high plain so there isn't as much elevation gain as you'd expect.

The Mt Cavern walk in MRNP was surprisingly steep, especially if you went up from the creek side. There were parts there 30%+ and I reckon would average over 25% from the creek to summit.

More suggestions please, I love doing new walks I haven't seen before :mrgreen:
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby vagrom » Sun 01 May, 2016 9:14 pm

One advantage of the Lofty climb is taking bus 147 to terminus and walking 90mins to the top, then being able to bus from there back to the city in 40mins, without having to go back down for your car. Buses back, 3× per day, over 7 days.

Another good steep one is the Heysen Trail section from Sixth Ck Rd , off Valley Rd Montacute, up to Montacute Rd. That's very steep and a bit greasy under - foot when wet. On bike, Checkers Hill Rd would be the steepest in SA possibly. It's part of the Tour Down-Under.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby philm » Mon 02 May, 2016 8:11 am

Plenty of steep hill climbs in Morialta Park - up the back. If you find the hills a nice challenge and want more I just train with a backpack on with weight!
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby South_Aussie_Hiker » Mon 02 May, 2016 8:23 am

Ohlssen Bagge is quite a steep, but a fairly short walk.

There is a section of the Heysen down near Victor which has a prolonged, very steep climb up from the beach.

The Hallett Cove boardwalk definitely gets the heart rate up.

The climb from Melrose up Mt Remarkable is some 600m vertical ascent.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby muffin man » Mon 02 May, 2016 9:36 am

You didn't mention Deep Ck but the loop walk is a good half day walk.
Try repeating Waterfall Gully, guaranteed the second or third time wont be short.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby paul_gee » Mon 02 May, 2016 10:52 am

South_Aussie_Hiker wrote:There is a section of the Heysen down near Victor which has a prolonged, very steep climb up from the beach.


I reckon I know the one you're talking about - the climb from Blowhole Beach up to Cobbler Hill. It climbs around 250 vertical metres over only a couple of kilometres. It's a good test at the end of a hilly day hiking up from Cape Jervis.

The Three Falls Grand Hike up at Morialta, when done clockwise, will get the lungs working. The first section up to Deep View Lookout is what feels like a never ending series of switchbacks. Not sure what the % is, but it's long!
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby eggs » Mon 02 May, 2016 11:49 am

Interesting question.
The Adelaide Hills are not high enough to get your sustained rises, but I have easily put in 960m of climbing over 12km in Ambers Gully/Black Hill area.

The back of Morialta rises at 18% over 1.1km
There are also segments which are quite steep there - Rocky Hill 4WD track after the climb to Deep View, the goat track up the gully past Deep View is 26% over 500m, the climb to Pretty Corner can get to 29% for 380m.

The Main Ridge at Ambers rises at 16% over almost 2km [my preferred training slope] and can be followed by a short slope of 74m climb over 350m [21%] near the Sugarloaf Track

At Mt Lofty - a nice variant is the Chambers Gully walk incorporating a rise up to Greenhill road. We have managed 823m over 15.2 km. But the steep part to Greenhill was 15% for 1.5km and the last rise to Lofty is 18% for 1.5km.

At Deep Creek - the loop is 610m over 11.4km. The steepest part is the rise from Deep Creek Cove - a short 25% immediate climb for 200m, down and then up to Tapannappa - ~200m climb in 900m.
Heysen Trail in that area - Cobbler Hill = 240m in 1.9km, but there is a lot of steep up and down between Blowhole Beach and Tapannappa.

Further a field - we have climbed up 585m in 3km on the face of Mt McKinley in the Gammons - but that is a rock climb!
I also believe Pompey Pillar can be approached from the outside of the Pound - which would give a rise of 540m in 2.3km [23%]
In both these cases there is no track.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby whitefang » Mon 02 May, 2016 3:03 pm

vagrom wrote:Another good steep one is the Heysen Trail section from Sixth Ck Rd , off Valley Rd Montacute, up to Montacute Rd. That's very steep and a bit greasy under - foot when wet.


I did this one just last night and it is rather steep indeed. It is a short climb though but very tiring. You could always start at Cudlee Creek and follow the Heysen Trail up to Montacute Road. There is a fair amount of elevation gain and loss in that section and with the extra distance it is a good workout. I really enjoyed the climb up from Kangaroo Creek over the hill and down to Valley Road.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby danman » Sat 07 May, 2016 5:35 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions so far! Ohlssen Bagge sounds good and is one I haven't done before, will definitely get to that one soon. I also like the suggestion of adding more weight to the pack :)

Some of the Morialta sounds interesting - I've followed the Yurrebilla trail through there and done the main walks up from the car park, but it sounds like I may have missed a few out the back.

Deep Creek is a good one, the loop walk is really spectacular and quite steep down to the cove/river crossing.
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby Bubbalouie » Sat 07 May, 2016 11:25 pm

I've not tested the elevation change but black Hill from Gorge road to Montacute road and back has a few steepish bits. I haven't made time to do the full loop but going from Gorge road to 3rd falls in Morialta would make for a good day walk with a decent amount of elevation change.

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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby fotosbysal » Fri 27 May, 2016 9:44 pm

For me, definitely Waterfall Gully to Mt Lofty is the steepest I've done. Mt Ohlssen Bagge was a bit of a lung buster but then again I had to run some of it as I wanted to capture the sunrise!!
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby danman » Sat 04 Jun, 2016 11:13 pm

New nomination. Mt Bryan from the eastern side. climbs about 250m in 1km. very nice views!
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby roxyadelaide » Tue 07 Jun, 2016 9:35 pm

There are lots of steep hills around Adelaide - some of my favourite hills include:

Chapmans Track - Morialta

Centre Track - Morialta

Wandilla Drive - Morialta - go to the end of the street & keep going straight up the hill

The Widow Maker - Cleland

Pengana Spur - Cleland (off Waterfall Gully Road - Woolshed Gully entrance)

Stobie Track - Chambers Gully Cleland

Arrienne's Hill - Cleland (Off of Winter Track)

Narrow Range Road (part of Heysen Trail) - Cherryville

Gate 5 Mt Osmond - Off of Waterfall Gully Road behind the green shed

Centre Track Mt Osmond - start at Davenport Track on Waterfall Gully Road

Slapes Gully - Greenhill Recreation Park (the track runs parallel to Greenhill Road )

Main Ridge Track - Black hill (Start at Ambers Gully)
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby roxyadelaide » Fri 04 Nov, 2016 6:57 am

My hiking group is doing a three hill challenge in Cleland, Widow Maker, Arrienne's Hill & Fence Track on Tuesday 8 November 2016 if you are interested in checking out three steep tracks in Cleland that are not located on the official park maps. WE would love to have you join us.

http://www.meetup.com/Adelaide-Walkers- ... 235263112/
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby mikethepike » Mon 05 Dec, 2016 6:15 pm

Well for the last few years I have been looking for 1 or 2 companions to do the 6 biggest verticals in the Flinders at a peak a day over 6 days with the driving from the southern to the very northern Flinders - plus a gracious 4WD owner to hopefully provide the transport. (A 4WD is essential to access some roads and so reduce walking distances) and I think it is only fair for the walking group to pay all the fuel cost + 20% as well as the food (including celebratory pub meal and drinks) costs of the driver. The peaks (with vertical ascent, not peak elevation, shown in brackets) and heading from South to North are: Mt Brown (850m), Mt Arden (790m), Mt Aleck (845m), Pompey Pillar (910m) - and with those first 4 peaks approached from the west side; Mt McKinley (750m), Benbonyather Hill (720m) and Freeling Heights approached from Paralana Hot Springs (790m). Total walk distance is around 116 km. The idea is to do them in 6 days not including the drives to and from Adelaide. I think that it is a fair challenge but definitely doable though we need to do good times to reduce the likelihood of night time driving especially in the northern Flinders so as to make it easier for the driver. The trip would best be done between mid May and mid August to avoid the likelihood of hot weather. If interested, please get in touch. Mike
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby roxyadelaide » Sun 11 Dec, 2016 3:04 pm

Are there proper walking tracks to each of the mountains or do some of them involve bush-bashing?

I think that the Heysen Trail goes to Mt Brown & Mt Arden & I would like to do those sections in 2017 on weekends next year once the weather is cool enough
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby eggs » Sun 11 Dec, 2016 5:57 pm

Not sure of his approach to Mt Brown as there is a loop walk over that - which is partly Heysen Trail.
Heysen goes over Arden but on a north-south alignment.
But if approaching from the west there would be no set tracks for this and the others.
There is a "route" over McKinley - but no real track. You have to work it out more so than even picking up pads.

A lot of Flinders walking is fairly open. There might be some tougher scrub on a few of these though. [Aleck in particular and maybe Benbonyathe]
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby mikethepike » Thu 22 Dec, 2016 9:35 pm

Hi Roxy, the walks will be X-country though as eggs says, one or two have roads to near the summit. Thanks to this forum, a 'gracious 4WD owner' has offered to be involved (still to be finalized) so it's now a matter of one or two others to join in for the footwork. Actually we are meeting for the first time at the Scenic Hotel at 5.00 PM on Thursday 29 December and if you and anyone else local and reading this are interested and get get there, you would be most welcome. Just for general chitchat and meeting up. It should be fun. Hopefully, we might see you!
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby danman » Sat 28 Jan, 2017 9:09 pm

roxyadelaide wrote:My hiking group is doing a three hill challenge in Cleland, Widow Maker, Arrienne's Hill & Fence Track on Tuesday 8 November 2016 if you are interested in checking out three steep tracks in Cleland that are not located on the official park maps. WE would love to have you join us.

http://www.meetup.com/Adelaide-Walkers- ... 235263112/


damn, i haven't logged in for a while - would have liked to go along to this! is there a gps track or map of the route taken? i'll check it out next time i'm down in adelaide.

also might be interested in doing those 6 climbs - have you done them all before or will they be new routes? the only one of those i've done from that list is mt brown, but that was via the standard loop walk from the falls carpark. bashing through scrub will undoubtedly be much tougher. any issues with getting permission from landholders or all these all in national parks?
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Re: Steepest climbs in SA?

Postby roxyadelaide » Wed 15 Feb, 2017 10:19 pm

a map & gpx file is located on Jez hiking blog

http://jez-hiking.blogspot.com.au/2010/ ... ining.html

enjoy - the 1st time I tried to do this hike I went up the wrong ridge & ended up crawling up the hill!

If you give it a go, would love to hear how you went.
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