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SA, WA & NT specific bushwalking discussion.

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SA, WA & NT specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.
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larapinta trail in April

Thu 08 Jan, 2015 3:16 pm

Looking at doing the larapinta trail in the last week of march and the first week of april.
We will be doing the track east to west and we have 13 days to complete it.
Has anyone done it early april that can throw some advice our way. Its easy to look up average temps and weather calenders but there is nothing like first hand experience.
Any comments welcomed

Re: larapinta trail in April

Thu 08 Jan, 2015 5:06 pm

Sorry cannot help on April but we did it in July ... was warm during the day but not overly hot (tended to get warm in the canyons and cold on the exposed ridges) as to be unbearable or anything like that; bucketed down one night and day (reduced visibility to just a metre or two) and got very cold at night (had ice one morning).


Re: larapinta trail in April

Thu 08 Jan, 2015 10:24 pm

Having lived in the Alice for well over 20 years, I would advise against going this early in the year. End of March will still be hot, even if it's mild by local standards it will be pretty warm.
How much water will you be carrying?

Re: larapinta trail in April

Fri 09 Jan, 2015 8:04 am

We both carry a bladder that can take 2LT and bottles just over 1.2lt but they will be big days . My pack including water will be approx 15kg and my wife will have approx 12.
From memory what sort of temps are normal around that time?

Re: larapinta trail in April

Fri 09 Jan, 2015 11:32 am

3.2 litres per day will not be nearly enough at the end of March.

On average, the temp can exceed 38 degrees every 1 in 10 March days.

Waiting 4-6 weeks before starting your trip would be a good idea.

Re: larapinta trail in April

Fri 09 Jan, 2015 9:23 pm

Hi pulseevents,
I tried it in April in around 2006 from the Mt Sonder end. I ended up pulling the pin at Ormiston on the third day due to the temperatures. I figured that I would need 9 to 10 litres to safely walk the section from there to Serpentine Chalet Dam and be able to camp out for a night near Waterfall Gorge. It is possible at that time of year but you would want to be very fit and have a high tolerance for heat, I went back in June a couple of years later and it was a much more enjoyable experience(and I like to think that I have a reasonable tolerance for heat).

I did a quick blog post about my aborted attempt if its any help to you at http://goinferalonedayatatime.blogspot. ... pinta.html


Re: larapinta trail in April

Fri 09 Jan, 2015 9:40 pm

Temps can vary widely but would likely be in the 30's every day.
I think the recommended water allowance is 4L per day, and I reckon there are 2 overnight sections with no water which means you would need to begin those sections with 8L.
I understand there is rain at the moment, which may mean some groundwater later on, but you certainly can't rely on any groundwater at all.
Not trying to put a downer on your plans, but I'd agree with South Aussie Hiker about the timing. Early-mid May would be much better.

Re: larapinta trail in April

Fri 09 Jan, 2015 9:50 pm

Thanks for your replies, I feel that we may be postponing this for another time. The heat wouldn't bother me if I was travelling me alone but my bride doesn't do heat aswell as I do. There is no point doing a trip like this if its not going to be enjoyable. Might have to look for somewhere else to spend a couple of weeks on the foot.

Re: larapinta trail in April

Sat 10 Jan, 2015 11:10 am

Wise choice Pulseevents - sorry to put a damper on your plans, but it seems the average temp for March is 33C. I've done Redbank Gorge to Glen Helen in just over 30C, and that was plenty warm enough, even for someone who was used to and enjoyed the heat.
From the Parks website, Section 9/10 is the only overnight without any water along the way. It's 28.6km, with some decent uphills from my flaky memory.
I wouldn't take less than 4L/day at any time of year.
Let us know where you decide to go :D
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