Mambray Creek Campground is in Mt Remarkable National Park, South Australia. On the Eastern side of Spencer Gulf, it’s about halfway between Port Pirie and Port Augusta.
We stayed at Mambray Creek campsite for several days because we wanted to have a good look around… but mainly because we loved it so much.
And we’ve been back a few times since. This is an ideal stopover point and a perfect place to rest before pushing east, west or north.
Every morning we were woken at dawn by a cacophony of bird calls, all competing to be the loudest. We became accustomed to looking out the tent window and watching birds, emus, kangaroos and euros wandering through the campsite. Magic!
Large goannas came out when the day warmed up. They can be a pest in some places, but these ones never bothered us. And we found some rather large scorpions hidden under rocks.
This kookaburra decided scorpions taste pretty good. The scorpion had taken up residence under our tent and was exposed as we were packing down. It was no match for the kookaburra!
A small joey wandered around with Mum and Dad. His antics kept us entertained – very cute.
Taking A Hike
You have seven walks to choose from out of Mambray Creek. They vary from an easy stroll to challenging multi-day hikes. SA National Parks have maps and basic information on each hike here.
We did three of the walks, two easy ones and one quite challenging.
Davey’s Gully Hike
The first afternoon we did the Davey’s Gully Hike. It’s a short walk just to the south of the campground. The walk ascends through a gully, then up a hill overlooking Spencer Gulf. There were euros and emus everywhere and the colours of the landscape were amazing.
This easy to moderate walk is ideal to do late afternoon. You’ll see the sun shimmering off the waters of Spencer Gulf. Davey’s Gully Hike is a scenic introduction to the walks in this area.
Hidden Gorge – A Hidden Delight
The next morning we set out on the 18km Hidden Gorge Hike. It was a cool morning, a perfect day for hiking.
It was absolutely beautiful, probaby the best walk I’ve ever done.
You follow a creek upstream for about 12km and walk through spectacular red gorges for much of the way. At one point it closes right in until the walls are only 4 or 5 metres apart.
Just make sure you take plenty of water. We were lucky, the creek had water in it the whole way. So we were able to refill our water bottles.
The northern end of the hike swings west, up onto a high ridgeline. You follow the ridge back, all the way to the campground. This section is fairly exposed, so make sure to take your sun protection.
By the time we arrived home, we were quite footsore. We must be getting soft… or old!
Mambray Valley Hike
Follow the creek upstream from the Day Visitor parking area. This easy walk meanders along beside the creek, eventually meeting with the start of the Alligator Gorge Hike.
It’s mainly flat ground and is more a stroll than a hike. In a good season, the running waters of the creek will be a constant companion. And keep an eye out for all sorts of wildlife.
One of the features is the beautiful river red gums. They provide a vital habitat for all sorts of birds and animals, plus they provide welcome shade in the heat of the day.
Mambray Creek Campground has exceptional facilities. The amenities are clean and tidy, plus they even have hot showers! Even better, the campsite is protected from the wind because it’s tucked away in a valley under the ranges.
There’s also a large outdoor sink where you can wash the dishes or prepare a meal to cook on the adjacent BBQs.
Just make sure to bring your own drinking water.
If you stay at Mambray Creek once, I guarantee you’ll be back time and again. It’s such a peaceful part of the world, and full of wildlife.
Take a few walks or just sit back and take in the scenery. Either way, you’ll leave feeling refreshed. Pretty soon you’ll find yourself planning to your next visit to Mambray Creek!
Mambray Creek Campground is on Nukunu Country.
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