The trail is named after Sir Sidney Kidman, a prominent local pastoralist and provides a scenic trail that highlights the natural beauty, cultural history and major points of interest along this section of the Mount Lofty Ranges.
Touted as a “multi use horse riding, cycling and walking trail” it appeared from my research that the 269 kilometres (167 miles) of various road, forest track, private land and unmade road reserves would be a logical next step. A real test of my resolve and an opportunity to check my collection of gear.
After all, it looked easy enough on Google maps and I was going to allow four days to complete the distance. Again, I didn’t think that 67 kilometres a day was not too tough an ask.
With maps in hand, gear on the bike, I set out from home early Saturday morning for the trailhead at Willunga, some 50 kilometres south.
This was going to be fun.
The story continues in the posts below.
Name: Kidman Trail
Region: Mt Lofty Ranges
Start: Willunga, South Australia.
Finish: Kapunda, South Australia
Time: 5-6 days
Suitable for: Off-road or mountain bikes. Not suitable for road bikes
Terrain: Many flat sections or gradual inclines but there are also some very steep sections where even dragging a heavily laden bike can be difficult. There are many shaded sections where yo will have the chance to get out of the heat.
Hazards: In places you will be crossing very busy roads and care is needed here. Also, there are a number of creek crossings that may be impassable after heavy rain and be prepared to lift your bike through gates and over fallen trees.
Surface: This trail has everything. Bitumen roads, grave and dirt tracks, dirt paths and everything in-between.
Signage: Well signed throughout its length.
Points of Interest: There are many small towns where a short stop is worthwhile. Also Kuipto forest is beautiful as are the other native forests along the route.
Facilities: Facilities are available in the towns but make sure you carry plenty of good and water as you cannot be certain that shops will be open. I also found that some watering areas marked on maps did not exist and had to fill up from ranger stations or other public facilities..
Best Times: All year round but it will be very hot in summer.
Getting there: 50 kilometres from Adelaide along the Southern Expressway and the road to Victor Harbour. Turn off before going up Willing Hill.
Map: There are a total of nine printed maps available from Bike SA but I would also suggest downloading the GPX file for your GPS unit. I found I needed both.
Disappointed, today I pack up under an overcast sky and before 8am, have left the caravan park headed for home. How could I ever have thought that I would ride this in four days. I have barely covered 25% or the route and I am calling it quits.
Up just after dawn and with a quick cereal breakfast enjoyed, it is on the bike to try and beat what looks to be inclement weather for the day. When I camped the previous night I had not realised that I was on top of a hill and so the long downhill run out of the pine forest was a welcome start for the day.