The Latest Footsteps Newsletter from South Australian Recreation Trails Incorporated (SARTI) and the Lavender Federation Trail.
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Official Opening of Callington Spur Trail 12th Sept 2020

Footsteps Newsletter

Volume 19, Issue 3 - November, 2020
Header Image:
Murray Bridge Mayor Brenton Lewis unveils the Callington Spur Trail head sign with Event MC Bob England, SARTI Board Member looking on.



Welcome to the third edition for 2020 of Footsteps, the newsletter of South Australian Recreation Trails Inc.

This year has been a challenge for many however, those living in South Australia, many areas of our lives have been less affected than most other States. Trail use figures indicate that many of you have taken advantage of the freedoms here and got out and walked or rode their bike.

As interstate borders have begun to open, we are hearing of an increasing trickle of end to end walkers from other states arriving.

We always welcome contributed stories and photos giving your experiences of your walk on the SARTI trails.

We rely on you to let us know of any improvements you believe should be made or report any trail damage that needs attention.

This the last Footsteps newsletter planned for this year. (We may send out a short one if there are any updates). Hopefully our current freedoms will remain so we can take advantage of the many pleasant days that allow us to continue to enjoy the many trails available throughout SA.

A big welcome to all the new readers of Footsteps.

As always, the SARTI Board and volunteers have been busy.
Read about our activities in this newsletter.

In this issue:

  • Callington Spur Trail official opening.
  • M2C Trail Builders Acknowledged For Work
  • SARTI expands its mountain bike presence. 
  • Trail Maintenance Wins Sustainable Communities Award - Monarto Trails
  • How did the Lavender Federation Evolve - Part 3?
  • Bits & Pieces.

Callington Spur Trail Official Opening

On Saturday 12th September, the “Lavender Federation Trail; Callington Spur” (its official name), was opened by Brenton Lewis, mayor of the Rural City of Murray Bridge, at the eastern trailhead on Adelaide Road, Murray Bridge.

Mayor Brenton Lewis unveils the trail head sign with MC Bob England looking on

Attended by about 80 including Member for Hammond, Adrian Pederick MP, many members of Council and senior staff as well as representatives from Walking SA and Department of Environment & Water plus walkers, mountain bikers and the public.

Speakers representing walking and mountain biking spoke of the cooperation between the two interests in designing and building a trail suitable for both interests.

Callington Spur Brochure & Maps (Click on image to download from website

The project is a joint venture of SARTI with the support of the Rural City of Murray Bridge. The concept was instigated by a Callington Councillor, SARTI was asked if we were interested in the project and together with council staff, mountain bikers and volunteers the trail was built.

View of the crowd during the official opening

Some existing trails were utilized including the Jailbreak Trail in Kinchina Conservation Park, the Lavender Federation Trail from within Rocky Gully to the SW corner of Monarto Safari Park. The remaining sections are new and specific to the Callington Spur.

After the official opening everyone enjoyed a Free BBQ

Utilizing existing trails opens up a variety of options for walkers and mountain bikers including a loop trail back to the trail head on Adelaide Road via the river and all the trails in Kinchina CP.

Some of the volunteers involved in building the trail

A brochure is available giving details with photos and maps is available from the Murray Bridge Information Centre. Information is also available from the Lavender Federation Trail website.

Download Callington Spur Trail Brochure (PDF)

M2C Trail Builders Acknowledged For Work

Saturday 12th September 2020 was a big day for cycling, the official opening of the Callington to Murray Bridge Spur Trail.

It turned out to be a magnificent day for both walkers and riders to come enjoy this multi-use trail.

At the official opening five special people were also recognised for their work in developing the new Lavender Cycling Trail – Murray Bridge to Clare (M2C) which closely follows the Lavender Federation Trail and is suited for cyclists.

Each received a Certificate of Achievement at the Opening in recognition of their contribution to the development of the Murray to Clare (M2C) Lavender Cycling Trail, a 300 kilometre cycling route inspired by the Lavender Federation Walking Trail.

From all of us benefiting from the M2C – a big “Thank You” to each of you.

Also a big hurrah to the Murray Bridge Council and the South Australian Recreation Trails Inc Board (SARTI) for the great day they put on at the opening of this new cycle trail, the Callington Spur Trail, which incidentally has been developed in cooperation with both walkers and cyclists.

L-R: Gillian Stevens, George Adams, Cam Rungie, Kay Haarsma and Helen Dominish.
Photo supplied by Derek Dominish.
Click to Explore the Lavender Cycling Trail (M2C)

SARTI expands its mountain bike presence

Working with mountain bike interests began over five years ago when the first formal trails were constructed in the eastern side of Monarto in what is now Kinchina Conservation Park. The area had many existing unauthorized trails that, with increasing usage were causing damage to the environment due to steep slopes causing erosion, new trails created, often through sensitive areas, sharp corners and jumps for MTB riders.

Under the supervision of MTB rider David Clark and cooperation from Sara Lance of the Department of Environment & Water, volunteers from walking and MTB interests set about building a series of new trails and closing off most of the existing unsustainable ones. To cater for all interests, the new trails covered most gradings to suit MTB riders from beginners to experienced.

A really great video looking at the trails available for walking & MTB riders in this area. Watch at

The Kinchina Conservation Park map shown in the video is available on Lavender Federation Trail - Map 1 (Recently updated map - not on the old one) or download the Kinchina CP map from the:
Lavender Federation Trail Website - Maps Page

Since the completion of the Lavender Federation Trail to Clare in May 2018, SARTI has been increasing its association with mountain biking. Our web site started receiving increasing enquiries from bike riders about using the LFT between Murray Bridge and Clare. Constructed as a walking only trail, the use of private property and over 200 stiles over fences meant that many sections were unsuitable for bikes.

As a result, the 302 km M2C (Murray Bridge to Clare) Cycle Trail evolved. See second article in this newsletter about the volunteers who helped develop it.

Using the LFT where suitable, new specific MTB/Cycling sections were planned. New maps when reprinted will show the M2C trail, the first new one being Map 2. 

Lavender Federation Trail  Map 2 Reprint Includes many new features for the Mount Beevor to Springton Section. Released this year it includes the Lavender Cycling Trail (M2C) and recent LFT changes, and also adds the Sanderson and Sanderston Link Trails and the new Mt Pleasant Loop Trail.


Why is SARTI involved also with MTB/Cycling interests?
Our name is South Australian Recreation Trails Incorporated not SA Walking Trails Inc.

The SARTI Board now has MTB representatives and we now have the M2C web site to cater for cyclists. There is access from the LFT web site or direct - click on the button below. Check it out. Tell Your Cycling Friends about it.

Click to Explore the Lavender Cycling Trail (M2C)

Trail Maintenance Wins Sustainable Communities Award for the Monarto Trails

With great cooperation from Natural Resources Management (NRM), the Murray Bridge Council and Volunteers went about planning the Jailbreak Trail, closing part of the trail due to being badly eroded and rerouting the  existing trail. 

Planning reroute of the Jailbreak Trail
The image above shows the eroded right hand side planned to be closed off and the left hand side marked with dots being the new 200 metres of trail, designed to protect the area from further erosion. 

NRM, MB Council, volunteers planning the Jailbreak Trail

Trail building the Jailbreak Trail - hefty rocks make for a good foundation.

Their efforts were recognised with the win of the Sustainable Communities Award. Well done to all concerned.

How did the Lavender Federation Trail Evolve - Part 3?

In 2002, the way forward from Mt Beevor to Tungkillo was far from settled. The then owner of property at Mt Beevor had contacted SARTI with a number of objections for the use of road reserves past the summit. These included a request to provide proof of the road reserve existence and an environmental impact study among seven other requirements. In time, the reason for these demands became clear when it was learnt that the property was for sale. After the property was sold, the new owner was extremely cooperative and the trail route from the summit proceeded.

A further obstacle surfaced around the same time when the Lavender Federation Trail was named in State Parliament. 

It was claimed by the opposition, that landowners hadn’t been consulted (incorrect). Also mentioned in Hansard was the SA Farmers Federation were afraid that walkers would spread disease between properties including Broomrape (nearest was 5 km from the trail), claimed that walkers were “not permitted on road reserves for which a farmer holds an exclusive permit.” (incorrect) amongst many other comments made.
Chairman, Terry Lavender, with letters to politicians and press releases backed up by proof of the incorrect statements made in Parliament was able to put to rest the accusations.  

It was a very busy year in 2002. 
The first proposal for a Rocky Gully Northern Loop Trail was put to Forestry SA, the land managing authority at this time. The proposal did not proceed until in 2018, 16 years later. The Cypress Hill Trail, a longer version of the original SARTI proposal was completed as a duel use walking/mountain bike trail that has recorded 9804 walkers & MTB riders in the past 8 months (2020).

Also, in 2002, the first issue of the “Footsteps” newsletter was compiled. In total, 38 editions have been produced.

2002 also saw the release of an eco-tourism study by six Flinders University students that was presented to Murray Bridge Council staff and Murraylands tourist operators.

The following year, SARTI Chairman Terry Lavender was honoured at a celebration for the 25th year anniversary of the completion of the Heysen trail. A plaque was unveiled in his honour.

October 2003, Tungkillo was reached but things were not looking good for the future. Securing funding was difficult, just eight volunteers were on the SARTI Board attempting to do all the work necessary.

A massive blow occurred on January 4th 2004 with the passing of SARTI Chairman Terry Lavender OAM.

Terry, together with several other respected walkers, was the main driving force behind the creation of a trail from Murray Bridge to Clare. His knowledge gained in the building of the Heysen Trail was the template used by SARTI. Without Terry, the project would never have started. SARTI was without a leader.

It was proposed to rename the Federation Trail, with the permission of Ann Lavender, the Lavender Federation Trail.
On the 24th May 2004, the next stage was opened at the Tungkillo Hall and renamed the Lavender Federation Trail.

By July, resignations and ill health meant the SARTI Board was down to six and still without a chairman. The word went out that urgent assistance was required or it would be very likely the Lavender Federation Trail would end at Tungkillo.

Within a short time, the SARTI Board consisted of ten, a chairman, a grant application for $15,000 to the Office for Recreation and Sport to build the LFT to Springton had been successful and everything was once again looking positive.

Historic Photo: SARTI Board 2005 Outside the Tunkillo Hotel.
L-R: Lou Bordas, Graham Hallandal, Barry Stacey, Eileen Bordas, Albert Pryce, Roger Lillecrapp, Bob England.

You can read Part 1 in Volume 19, Issue 1 - April, 2020
and Part 2 in Volume 19, Issue 2 - July, 2020  from our website at:

Check Out Previous Footsteps Newsletters
Read the article in larger size (on LFT website)

Bits & Pieces:-

For The Latest Information and Resources about the COVID-19 Pandemic including things like Travel restrictions. this is especially important for anyone planning to come from Interstate, as each state has its own rules (on top of the Federal  ones). Stay Safe!

Please visit the South Australian Government website for COVOD-19

ARPA Bushwalkers spent five days in Murray Bridge

A group from ARPA Bushwalking group spent five days in Murray Bridge in early September walking trails in the area. Walks varied from 6 to 11 km. An evening “Happy Hour” at the Murray Bridge Tourist Park got the two walking groups together each day with information on the next day’s walks. Several local SARTI members were able to join the groups on their walks and evening get togethers.

Slowly Interstate Walkers Are Reaching SA

Di Carroll and walking partner Richard from Brisbane shown here at Monarto Recreation Reserve in late September on day 16 of their walk from Clare to Murray Bridge. 

They reported on meeting a runner on the Lavender Federation Trail traveling from Clare to Murray Bridge over three days.

Water was a problem they needed to overcome particularly between Springton and Monarto.

The next shelter planned to be erected at Rockleigh this year by the Murray Bridge Council will include a rainwater tank.
Lavender Federation Trail Map 2 Updated
Map 2, Mount Beevor to Springton is out. The new map has undergone many changes, updates and additions. The Murray Bridge to Clare (M2C) Lavender Cycling Trail and Springton Loop Trail are additions to the new map. The Sanderston Trail and link trail to the Springton Loop Trail, previously shown on a separate brochure are now included as well is the new Mt Pleasant Loop Trail (23 kilometers). 

Trail maps are available at map outlets listed on our web site. Carto Graphics and the Map Shop are happy to mail order to interstate and country orders.

Some Visitor Information Centres may also stock our maps, but be aware they may be temporarily closed and will have COVID Safe procedures, so phone ahead if you can (see our maps page).

Planning to Stay on the Lavender Trails?

The Lavender Federation Trail web site is continually being updated with stay options. Some sections of the trail traverse areas away from close accommodation and we are happy to say that some operators are happy to pick up and drop off. Contact providers direct and ask if pick up and drop off services are available.
Find the latest info on the LFT Accommodation Pages

Tourism Operators.

SARTI has a special offer to businesses along the length of the Lavender Federation Trails (both walking and cycling trails) to assist them get on their feet after the COVID drop in travel.

Free 12 months advertising of on our website that includes a photo and details.

Leave a message on the website to take advantage of the offer. This includes accommodation, camping facilities, transport services, food outlets or any services that may be of interest to walkers and MTB riders.

The New Trail's Accommodation Listing Online

Bigger and brighter - if your accommodation is not listed - tell us about your business so we can add it and help people find you.

Check out the example above of the Rabbiters Hut Cottage listing above.
Register Your Interest on this web form

What projects is SARTI currently involved in?

Wilderness & Wine Trail
A proposal for a Wilderness & Wine Trail of 100 km for a multi-use walking & bike trail circumnavigating the Clare Valley. Proposal is for five 20 km sections using roads, road reserves and private property. Early stages but has our support and assistance has been offered.

Adelaide Wine Capital Cycle Trail.
A project involving 7 councils. Designed to promote Adelaide as the wine & cycling capital, linking wine regions and filling gaps in the existing trails. Designed to promote the SA & Australian cycling economy, growing wine exports and benefiting communities. Early stages or planning.

Wakefield Council. Connecting the 500 km Walk the Yorke Trail to Clare. 

Goyder and Clare & Gilbert Valley Councils walking trail network expansion.
Five of the proposed trails involve the construction of loop trails using the Lavender Federation Trail as the main spine of these loop trails. SARTI has offered its full support including assistance in trail construction and information on our supplier network and contacts.

A proposal for a trail on Eyre Peninsula from Port Lincoln to Coffin Bay.

Enquiry from Riverland Councils for a trail linking the Murray Coorong Trail
at Cadell to Riverland towns.

Eden Valley Loop Trail.
Proposal from the local Progress Association for the loop trail that utilises some private property. 

Adelaide 100 Trail.
Planned to traverse around Metropolitan Adelaide, First section opened recently, on the 11th Oct 2020.

Eudunda Multi-use Loop Trails
Multiple trails Proposed for the area around Eudunda, Point Pass and Robertstown

New Trail Development Challenging - SARTI can Offer Support
Proposals for new trails often do not eventuate further than the initial idea. There is a lot of work involved, often by volunteers and it is a daunting task as SARTI has experienced. We will always give assistance and help if we can to any proposal we are asked. Our decades of trail building have meant we can use the experience of our volunteers on what needs to be done to achieve an outcome.

Maintenance of the Lavender Federation Trail

And all the connecting loop and spur trails is an ongoing task that is undertaken by a group of volunteers. Maintenance volunteers are always welcome. Sometimes a major upgrade or change is required that requires extra help for just a few hours. Contact Trail Maintenance Manager Stuart Shepherd at 85682340 or 0431369354 if you are interested in assisting.
Photo: Trevor Mathews on stile, George Adams and Ian Pool back at the trailer, taken when SARTI was installing the LFT through part of the Narcoota section September 2013. PS - we did have time to take in the magnificent views.

Please Report any Damage or Concerns ASAP

We ask all trail users, if they see anything that they feel needs attention such as missing stiles (several have been stolen this year), improved signage or better track access, you are our eyes. Please report to Stuart or alternatively, leave a message on our web site.

Video of the LFT from SA Weekender on 7Plus - 2018

OOPS! almost lost this one promoting the LFT. Now back on the website.
Check out the Lavender Federation Trail story from Sunday 16th September 2018 on SA Weekender on 7Plus.
Check out the video on the LFT website

Murray Bridge Local Trails Promotions

October's Walk of the month: Riverglades Community Wetland

If you have some spare time in the Murray Bridge area you might like to consider doing a short walk or two on some of the local trails, like this Riverglades Community Wetland Trail.

You have to hand it to local Murray Bridge resident and SARTI Board Member Graham Hallandal for his fantastic promotional efforts. Not only does Graham write this newsletter along with all the other volunteer efforts, building the trails, seeking grants, promotion, and more, but he spends some time promoting local Murray Bridge Trails as well.

Graham has extra help in doing so from the Murray Bridge News and its editor Peri Strathearn who has always given SARTI great support by reporting on the Lavender Federation Trail efforts too. Well done to you both.
Check out the Murray Bridge News

Trail Warnings & Local Events - Please Tell Us!!!

We ask that the towns & districts along the Lavender Federation Trail send us news and warning items - We would love to be able to broadcast your Community Events to our readers (if in time - to the Footsteps Readers) but more likely to those who follow the Website and our Social Media streams on Facebook and Twitter.

If LFT walkers know about your community event they may arrange thier arrival in your town or district to be present and enjoy it, creating a unique experience for them, and higher attendance for your event.

For trail warnings: some of the events in your district may not be related to walking, but they MAY actually intersect somewhere along the trail. It would be great if you could let us know, so that walkers could be prepared for safety sake, and perhaps to end up taking the time to enjoy your event. They may choose to walk in another district too, but rest assured; they will be planning to come to yours to complete thier walk of the trail.

Please realise that SARTI is not able to broadcast these events unless someone tells us about them, and sometimes we only find out about them at very short notice.

Find Resources On Our Website

  • Retail map outlets for the Lavender Federation Trail are listed on the web site. See website 
  • Maps & brochures to wholesalers - If you would like to stock Lavender Federation Trail Maps and or brochures please contact Don McDonald who has taken over the distributing maps & brochures to wholesalers. You can contact Don from the website.

    Mail Order Maps - We receive many requests for information on map purchases particularly from country areas or interstate. Click for the website 'Maps' page
  • Lavender Federation Trail Cloth Badges For Sale
    Cost is $10 plus postage however, some map outlets stock them if you want to avoid the postage.

  • They are also available from George Adams (phone 08) 8396-8140 or
     Order via web form 
  • Are you a “Friend of the Lavender Federation Trail”?
    2020-2021 Membership available now.

    Memberships are $10 PA for individuals with 5 & 10 year also available.
    Clubs and businesses $100 PA which include an advertisement on the web site.
    Your contribution will allow SARTI to maintain the Lavender Federation Trail (Thank You)
    Note that you can become a member at any time of the year.
Become a “Friend of the Lavender Federation Trail”


  • Do you have any other favourite resources that might help others? 
  • You are welcome to tell us about your walk experience of the Lavender Federation Trail. Photos are welcome too!
  • Spot something wrong on the Trail - Please Tell Us!
  • Hear of a Community Event that will happen on or close to the trail that other walkers might like to know about - Let Us Know! - We want the communities along the LFT to benefit. CONTACT US

New Accommodation Listings On Website
Click for See Listing

Additionally there is a great amount of work behind the scenes
collecting information on "Camping sites" suitable for walkers
and these will become available on the website when verified.
If you would like to attract Lavender Federation Trail Walkers and thier support teams to your tourism related business, please contact us for details.


Are you receiving this newsletter indirectly via a club or friend? Why not receive a copy direct and get all the latest news direct to your computer or mobile device?

The Lavender Federation Trail website home page  gives easy access to subscribe or unsubscribe. Don’t forget to tell us if you change your email address via the link at the bottom of this email, 'update subscription preferences' at the bottom of this newsletter
“Footsteps” Newsletter is free. Reproduction of all or part of this newsletter by any organization may be permitted providing permission is first obtained from SARTI.

Previous Newsletter?

Looking for the Previous Newsletter? You can get it on the website.

If you have any trouble with this link
You can download the latest Footsteps Newsletter from the website at this link.
and follow the links. You can also download previous newsletters here too.


Be Social - Tell Others about our Trail

We hope you like the latest information.

 Please 'Like us' or 'Share' a page on Facebook at
  Click Here

 Follow us on Twitter at @lavendertrail1  (note the number one (1) on the end).
  Click Here


Graham Hallandal
Editor (Footsteps),
Lavender Federation Walking Trail.
South Australian Recreation Trails Inc.,
Post Office Box 1052,
Murray Bridge, 5253, Australia.
See Website


from Our Business Members

Footside Farm

Overnight accommodation, Farm visits by appointment.

Refurbished ‘Barn’ for sleeping space. Toilet/shower close by.  Ample room for tenting.Catering options from self catering to fully catered country style with the option of featuring native foods. See Website

Carto Graphics

Unley based Carto Graphics has supplied SARTI with all the Lavender Federation Trail maps and given us great support including coming to all our Trail Openings with a display.
See Website

Business Members - Advertise in Footsteps Newsletter & Website
Join as a Full Member for $100 per year to get the benefits of Advertising direct to those who may be keen to use your services or goods.

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