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Frequently Asked Questions

Planning your trip to the Flinders Ranges made easy with responses to some common questions here. We'd love to help you further if you don't find what you need.

How often does the walk depart and how long is it?

The 3 night four-day experience departs every Thursday and Friday between 21 March and 04 October 2019, except for June and July where the walk departs on Thursdays only. There's 3 days of walking each covering between 12 and 14kms.

I have more than 12kg of luggage for my charter flight. What are my options?

Part of the Arkaba Walk experience is a private group charter flight from Adelaide General Aviation Terminal to Hawker airstrip in the Flinders Ranges. As such you will have strict payload allowances enforced to ensure that your flight is as smooth and safe as possible. If you know that you will be travelling with more we have a number of options for you that need to be arranged prior to checking in to your charter flight.

  1. Store it at your hotel

    If you are staying in Adelaide the night prior to your charter flight, you would be able to safely store any excess luggage with the reception of your CBD hotel. Upon your return to Adelaide we would be able to go via your hotel and pick up your luggage before taking you onward to the airport. This needs to be arranged in advance to schedule with your driver.

  1. Store it at Adelaide Airport

    Adelaide Airport has a number of self-service storage lockers that are located in the parking lot directly across from the main terminal. They have a number of sizes ranging from Small (420mm H x 900mm D x 420mm W) for $12.00 per 24 hours to Large (864mm H x 900mm D x 420mm W) for $16.00 per 24 hours. 

Should you be in the unique situation that you have arrived to your charter flight with more than the approved luggage allowance, there may be a chance that the excess will be offloaded. In this instance, your bags would be safely stored and delivered either to a hotel you are staying at after the walk or to you at Adelaide Airport before your onward flight at a cost of $150. Please speak to your pilot and complete credit card authority on the day.

How Many people in my walking group?

The Arkaba Walk operates to a minimum of 2 and maximum of 10. 

I am a solo walker, can I join a group?

Walking holidays are a great way to meet new, interesting, like-minded people and we regularly welcome people travelling solo. You can join a departure with a minimum of 2 people confirmed and will be paired with a single traveller of the same sex at no additional cost. Should you prefer your own swag deck and homestead guestroom accommodation, you have the option to pay $1,500 to guarantee your own room.  

How challenging is the experience?

The Arkaba Walk is graded as moderately challenging, covering between 12 and 14kms per day for three walking days. It's not a race to the finish, rather an experience that encourages you to take  your time, soak in the outback and stories passionately shared by our field guides. There are two sections that some will find more challenging, a steep descent from the lip of Wilpena Pound at the end of day 1, and a steep ascent to the summit of the Red Range at the end of day 2. The reward more than makes up for these short, sharp sections with incredible photo opportunities. One of the best things about the Arkaba Walk is the style is exploratory, you don't follow a fixed trail and we have flexibility to change up the route according to fitness and interest levels of your collective group. 

How fit do I need to be?

We generally advise that if you have a reasonable level of fitness and spend some time walking most days, you are in a great position to really enjoy the experience. It's helpful for our guides to be aware of any pre-existing medical conditions or previous walking experience that may affect your ability to walk 12-14km each day. 

Can I be dropped somewhere other than Adelaide airport following my scenic road transfer?

Our ex Adelaide package ends with a scenic road transfer through one of South Australia's most famous wine regions, the Clare Valley, with lunch and wine tasting included. All walkers are dropped at Adelaide Airport to meet onward flights from 6pm, however we can arrange for you to be dropped at most places in the Clare Valley or your Adelaide City hotel at no extra cost, if requested in advance. 

Can I drive from Adelaide, or elsewhere and join the walk?

The Arkaba Walk departs at 10am from the homestead and we suggest all walkers not booked on the ex Adelaide package, stay within close proximity the night before the walk. Arkaba Homestead offers pre-walk accommodation, full board and additional guided experiences at $990 per person for guests. There are also options in nearby areas of Quorn, Hawker or Rawnsley Park - all within 60 minutes commute to Arkaba. We would not recommend staying further away as wildlife is most active on the road in the early mornings, making for a potentially unsafe drive. 

Can I stay an extra night after the walk?

It is possible to spend an additional night at our Arkaba Homestead after the walk if you are booking a Friday departure (available March, April, May, August, September and October) as part of our ex Arkaba package. We encourage this option as a chance to linger longer and experience the different flavour of the homestead experience. 

Is there an option to start the walk on another day of the week outside your scheduled Thursday and Friday departures?

There are instances where new departure dates can be added on days other than Thursday or Friday, usually only for a larger group and subject to availability. 

Can I add a scenic flight over Wilpena Pound?

There's no better way to see how much ground you covered than with a scenic flight over Wilpena Pound. For walkers booked on the ex Adelaide package, the only available time to book a scenic flight is on the afternoon of day 3, after completing the walk around 3pm. For walkers on the ex Arkaba package, we suggest a scenic flight following your check-out from Arkaba on day 4, to maximise your last morning in the homestead. 

Do you offer value for private groups booking and travelling together?

For groups of 10 travelling together, the 10th walker will walk free. To secure an exclusive departure with less than 10 walkers, you will need to pay the equivalent of 9 walkers. 

Do I need walking poles?

While not necessary, we do find that some people are more comfortable walking with poles to provide support to knees and for balance, especially in the two sections that are slightly more challenging. 

Are hiking boots necessary?

It is essential that you have footwear that are broken in and have ankle support, as the creeks beds in particular can be unsteady underfoot. If you don't have time to break in a new pair of hiking boots, and feel confident in your existing walking shoes, then comfortable trainers would be suitable. 

Can I bring my own day pack? How big is the one you provide?

You are welcome to use your own but we do provide you with a 30L day pack with ridged lumbar support, which includes a hydration bladder holding up to 2L. 

What about a water bottle?

In addition to your 2L hydration bladder, our guides carry at least 10L of additional water and encourage you to keep hydrated. If you have a preferred water bottle instead the bladder provided, you are very welcome. A container with 1L minimum is recommended. 

How much do I carry?

A support vehicle takes your main luggage ahead leaving you carrying your day bag only for your water, lunch, trail snacks and any personal items you might like available to you throughout the day. 

When is the best time to walk?

The walk operates between march and October, and each month offers different flavours, as South Australia is a very seasonal destination. The wildlife at Arkaba is incredible all year round, as is the ever inspiring natural environment, so the best time to walk will depend when you can get away and your preferred walking weather. March to May provides warm Autumn days, with moderate nights and the earth can still be quite dry. June to August is Winter and the earth usually starts to green up with a bit of rain, the days are perfect for walking and the nights are cold (with all sorts of Wild Bush Luxury tricks to keep our walkers nice and warm, don't be concerned if you feel the cold more than others!). September and October see the arrival of Spring, when rain dependant wildflowers are out and new animals are born. Nights are still quite moderate though the days will begin to heat up significantly towards the end of September into October. 

What's the best time for wildflowers?

The arrival of the wildflowers is very dependent on rainfall, however we have found in previous years that late August to September seems the time most likely to see the delicate, vibrant petals popping out between the ancient earth. Green and red rough-leaved grevillea, the bright purple vanilla lily and soft silver mulla mulla welcome spring to the Flinders and our guides know just the places to find them!

What if it rains?

The walk takes place in all conditions, excluding extreme weather. With the right clothing, there is no bad weather and we recommend walkers keep an eye on the BOM weather forecast leading up to the walk. It is useful to pack a light waterproof jacket in most cases. All sleeping and meal areas at the swag camps are undercover and protected from any rainfall. 

I'm not sure I'm up for the entire three-day walk. Can I do part of it?

The 3 night, 4 day walk cannot be split into parts however booking a stay at the Arkaba Homestead instead would allow you to enjoy smaller sections of the walk that can be accessed by vehicle within your included guided activities. 

What is the accommodation like?

The accommodation is part of the real Wild Bush Luxury of the Arkaba Walk, with our signature star beds accommodating walkers on night 1 and 2 and the Arkaba Homestead, a member of Luxury Lodges of Australia, welcome guests on night 3. Our star beds are raised sheltered platforms with two extremely comfortable single swag beds and each night you have the option of sleeping undercover or (our preference!) out under the stars. The Arkaba Homestead has five beautifully restored guestrooms, with either twin or king beds and each with a view out to the surrounding ranges, a private verandah and ensuite. 

Can you elaborate on the toilets and showers at your signature swag camps?

Each camp has two waterless composting toilets that require no use of chemicals and have no pulluting discharge. There are also two showers which are an experience in themselbes! Using gravity rainfall showers fed by hearth warmed tank water that are purpose built buildings, offering incredibly beautiful (and private) views. 

Should I bring toiletries with me?

Please do bring toiletry items for your personal use. Shampoo, conditioner, hand and body soap are provided at each camp site as well as the homestead. With conservancy at the heart of everything we do, these are biodegradable and designed to minimise our environmental footprint. 

Can I charge my devices while I am on out in the wilderness?

Gloriously, there is no Wi-Fi or phone reception at Arkaba, with the bush camps operated by solar power so you will only be able to charge your devices when returning to the homestead on day 3. We recommend bringing portable battery pack recharges if your device requires charging during the walk, particularly if you plan on taking plenty of photos! 

I have dietary requirements, can I be catered for?

With enough notice we are able to cater to most dietary requirements. Being a remote property, it is important our chefs are made aware of anything specific well in advance as you do not have a menu of options to choose from at meals times. It may also be helpful for our chefs to know what you do like, so feel free to let us know!

Do you offer Spa Services? 

Not in the traditional sense, however we do have the option of a Creekside Massage with a twist of wild! Throw in birdsong, a truly magnificent setting and connection to Flinders Ranges country through signature oil blends alive with quandong seed, juniper berry, and native lemongrass. You’re in very good hands with Ani, owner and local operator of Desert Elements. While advance booking is not required, it’s recommended to ensure availability and avoid disappointment. Payment is settled together with your balance or by credit card if booked locally subject to availability.

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