Gawler Ranges

StartClick to Reverse the Dynamic Map and Driving NotesCeduna
FinishPort Augusta
DifficultyDifficulty 3/5
Suitable For4WD Motorbike 
Distance465.41 km
Minimum Days3
Average Speed70.88 km/hr
Travel Time6 hrs 33 mins
Page Updated: 23 Feb 2020


The Gawler Ranges are a range of mountains in South Australia to the north of Eyre Peninsula. The ranges were named by Edward John Eyre after the Governor of South Australia, George Gawler in 1839. This was on one of Eyre's earlier expeditions before his famous crossing of the Nullarbor Plain further west.

This trek note starts at Port Augusta and heads towards the town of Iron Knob, through the Gawler Ranges to Mount Ive Station. The trek continues west through the heart of the ranges until it heads back down to meet the Eyre Highway at Wirrulla and then finally ending at Ceduna.

This trek is generally fairly reasonable and should take about 2 days with maybe a stop over at Mt Ive Station. This station is one of the few places open to travellers in this region. They have a camping area and access to land bordering Lake Gairdner.

How to Use this Trek Note

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During spring, the Gawler Ranges offers a pretty trip especially when the wildflowers are in bloom. The area is an interface between the Eyre Peninsula mallee country and the drier arid zone to the north of the ranges. Plants and animals from both zones occur in the Gawler Ranges. There are over 970 flora species and around 162 fauna species, including birds such as Major Mitchell (Pink Cockatoo), Rufous Treecreeper, Malleefowl, Scarlet-breasted Parrot, Gilbert’s Whistler, and mammal species such as Hairy-nosed Wombat, Greater Long-eared Bat and Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby, Red and Grey Kangaroos and Euros.

TrekID: 32


MUST READ: You are strongly encouraged to read the following articles prepared by the knowledge experts at ExplorOz for your safety and preparation before undertaking any published ExplorOz Trek - Outback Safety, Outback Driving Tips, Outback Communications, and Vehicle Setup for the Outback.


Please refer to Road Reports published by the local shire and/or main roads for the area you intend to visit. Road/Track conditions can change significantly after weather events. Travellers must be responsible for their own research on current conditions and track suitability.
Your vehicle will need to be extensively prepared for remote area travel, with all fuel, water, food and vehicle repair equipment and spare parts. All travellers should read the 4WDriving Topic for related articles and checklists for vehicle setup and driver awareness.

We advise that you refer to the latest information and advice about outback communications in the Communications Topic. All drivers should set their UHF radios to scan all stations, but take note that Channel 10 is the offical channel for the Simspon Desert. Anywhere in the Diamantina Shire (comprising the towns of Birdsville, Betoota and Bedourie) you must not used UHF Ch 8 and 38 as these are to be reserved for emergency calls only - these channels are monitored by the Clinics, Police and station operators and must remain clear.

There are areas in the Gawler Ranges which are prone to flash flooding and can be impassable after rain. Please check local conditions with the Department for Environment and Heritage Ceduna on: (08) 8625 3144 or Gawler Ranges Wilderness Safari Office on: (08) 8680 2045


No permits are needed for this trek note.

Fuel Usage

4cyl 65 litres4cyl 75 litres4cyl 93 litres
6cyl 58 litres *6cyl 84 litres6cyl 82 litres
8cyl 71 litres8cyl 77 litres
Usage is averaged from recorded data (* specific to this trek) and calculated based on trek distance.

Best Time To Visit

Closest Climatic Station

Distance from Trek Mid Point 75.58km E
Mean Max. °C33.432.929.325.020.116.816.518.221.525.128.831.2
Mean Min. °C16.616.914.310.
Mean Rain mm15.816.714.914.723.926.825.924.924.723.017.318.4
    Best time to travel      Ok time to travel      Travel NOT recommended


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Ceduna to Merghiny
Driving: 16.09 km
Heading: 93°
Avg Speed: 84.71 km/hr
EST Time: 11:23
Merghiny to Wirrulla
Driving: 76.02 km
Heading: 116°
Avg Speed: 88.87 km/hr
EST Time: 51:19
Wirrulla to Yardea
Driving: 117.94 km
Heading: 89°
Avg Speed: 64.74 km/hr
EST Time: 01:49:18
Yardea to Pondanna Ruins
Driving: 32.18 km
Heading: 79°
Avg Speed: 66.74 km/hr
EST Time: 28:55
Pondanna Ruins to Mount Ive Station
Driving: 26.48 km
Heading: 122°
Avg Speed: 68.68 km/hr
EST Time: 23:08
Mount Ive Station to Valley Hut
Driving: 67.35 km
Heading: 101°
Avg Speed: 31.12 km/hr
EST Time: 02:09:51
  • Drive southwest on Mount Ive Road. for: 3.68 km time: 08:14
  • Turn left onto Nonning Road. for: 63.67 km time: 02:01:37
Valley Hut to Siam
Driving: 8.8 km
Heading: 108°
Avg Speed: 74.91 km/hr
EST Time: 07:02
Siam to Corunna
Driving: 44.14 km
Heading: 110°
Avg Speed: 73.03 km/hr
EST Time: 36:15
Corunna to Iron Knob
Driving: 6.15 km
Heading: 158°
Avg Speed: 52.24 km/hr
EST Time: 07:03
Iron Knob to Pandurra
Driving: 30.3 km
Heading: 66°
Avg Speed: 88.26 km/hr
EST Time: 20:35
Pandurra to Port Augusta West
Driving: 37.24 km
Heading: 62°
Avg Speed: 82.2 km/hr
EST Time: 27:10
Port Augusta West to Port Augusta
Driving: 2.72 km
Heading: 133°
Avg Speed: 75.08 km/hr
EST Time: 02:10
Distance is based on the travel mode shown (Driving, Straight, Cycling, Walking etc), Direction is straight line from start to end, Avg Speed & EST Time is calculated from GPS data.

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