Thru Hiking the Lavender Federation Trail – Sept 2018 – Page 15

25 September Tungkillo to Mt Beevor 20 km

Another frost and a cold, cold start but luckily, first up, a climb to warm us. For the next two days we have no known water supplies and no known camp sites. We had a vague idea of staying at an establishment called “Diggers Rest” near Mt Beevor but could not find anyone who knew anything about it or any contact details. We figured that it must be closed and made other plans.

Early in the day we followed Baker Creek which encouragingly had plenty of water in it. The creek was surrounded with large gums and the noise from kookaburras, magpies, pigeons, galahs, corellas, crows and sulphur crested cockatoos was deafening. Added to that was the bleating of sheep which were also unusually vocal this crisp and cold morning. The frosty grass was crunching under our footsteps.

Just off the Tepko Mt Torrenns Road a local farmer had an old style red telephone box at his driveway entrance. We crossed another flowing creek but Tea Tree Spring, just off the trail, was dry. A couple of kilometres on the trail crosses Muir Creek. We planned to camp somewhere around Mt Beevor, 5 km ahead, so Muir Creek is our last chance for water. Of all the creeks seen today, this one has the least likely looking water but we have no choice. We fill up with around 3 litres of water each to last us tonight and tomorrow morning. With heavier packs we totter off uphill.

From Muir Creek its a climb up to Mt Beevor of only 150 metres but we feel it with the extra weight of our water. Most of the climb happens in the next 2km, then the trail settles down to a steady and easy climb to the summit of Mt Beevor. On our right is a great view down into the valley to our west – ahead is the cluster of telecommunications and aviation equipment at the top of the mountain.

We found a campsite below the top of the mountain and set up the tents. The afternoon is warm and sunny and we had the whole mountain to ourselves. Judging by the lack of tyre marks on the road, we figured that visitors to Mt Beevor are rare. The view from the top is amazing. From Mt Lofty and the Barossa Range to the Coorong, Murray River and the Southern Ocean. In the dusk we see lights of towns – could that be Murray Bridge?