Works begin on $6 million Heysen Trail upgrade

Wild South Coast Way: Newland Head and Waitpinga Beach. Photo: File.
Wild South Coast Way: Newland Head and Waitpinga Beach. Photo: File.

Construction work has begun on upgrades to two campsites at Deep Creek and Waitpinga as part of the $6 million Wild South Coast Way project.

As part of the project, infrastructure upgrades are being made to the Heysen Trail to attract more long-distance hikers and provide for a premium multi-day walking experience.

Adelaide company Harrold and Kite is currently undertaking works at existing campsites at Eagle Waterhole in Deep Creek Conservation Park and a Heysen Trail campsite on Crown land adjacent to Balquhidder Station.

The walk-in campsites are a key component of the $6 million project, which seeks to improve Heysen Trail infrastructure to create a fully customisable, multi-day walking experience between Cape Jervis and Victor Harbor.

National Parks and Wildlife Service executive director Mike Williams said it was exciting to see upgrades begin to roll out.

"We are pleased to announce that Harrold and Kite will undertake the construction of these first two walk-in campsites at Deep Creek Conservation Park and on Crown Land at Balquhidder," Mr Williams said.

"The Wild South Coast Way on the Heysen Trail offers an exciting, active adventure for walkers of all fitness levels, and includes a section of trail that is accessible.

"These unique sites and surrounding facilities are different to traditional campsites found in national parks as they have been specifically designed to meet the needs of multi-day walkers and can't be accessed by cars for vehicle based camping."

The upgrades form part of a $130 million state government investment to revitalise South Australian national parks.

As part of the project, there is currently a YourSAy consultation process open in relation to the Newland Head, Deep Creek and Talisker Conservation Parks Management Plan amendments, which focuses on the Tapanappa Ridge and Newland Head campsites.

Mr Williams said the upgrades would include on-ground campsites or raised sleeping platforms, toilets, and undercover areas with seating for eating, cooking and washing up.

"The shelters have food preparation areas with benches, sinks and limited, non-potable water available," he said.

"Each campsite will have 10 different areas available to camp in, each able to house a two-person tent."

Members of the public have can make submissions on draft plans until June 24 via: yoursay.sa.gov.au