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Published December 7th 2016
Plenty of ways to enjoy this park
The National Pleasure Resorts Act was proclaimed in 1914, and one of the earliest areas to be declared as a National Pleasure Resort was Brownhill Creek. Now known as the Brownhill Creek Recreation Park, I went for a trip recently to see why this area was declared as such.
The large stone monument about half a kilometre along Brownhill Creek Road in Mitcham signifies the end of urbanisation and the start of the Recreation Park. Another 100m along and a small car park arrives on the left with a trailhead providing details of the park and the trails.
Across the road from the car park, the large green reserve is popular amongst picnickers, with the nearby tennis court providing an alternative attraction. Just behind the court is the Brownhill Creek which runs all year round with its flows heavily influenced by winter and spring rains.
The old weir is nearby and helps control the flow of waters into suburbia, and eventually to the Creek's exit into the Patawalonga Creek system at Glenelg North. One of Adelaide's more popular close-to-city caravan parks subsumes part of the Park offering visitors and residents some of the best views in the area. The caravan park kiosk has a range of quick snacks and drinks for those looking for an extended stay.
Heading southwest is the Wirraparinga Trail on the south-west side of the creek, the Peter Nelson Walking Trail and the Yurrebilla Trail on the north-east side of the creek, and a series of shared use trails running parallel to and overlapping the lightly used Brownhill Creek Road. Each of the trails are clearly directionally signposted and indicate whether they are suitable for walkers, hikers, cyclists or horses.
Continuing southwest, the trails pass a number of items of historical significance including the old quarries, rock crushing plants, the vintage drinking fountain and the manure pits. Information board provide further background details on the history of each of these local icons.
Brownhill Creek was named during a summer many years ago when the hills surrounding the creek were bare and devoid of anything but brown earth. Brownhill creek stood out alongside its neighbours of Greenhill and Black Hill predominantly due to its barren nature.
But alongside the Creek it is anything but bare with greenery through most of the year, and wildflowers making an extended appearance during spring. Picnic tables are scattered throughout the Park providing many choices as to where to stop, reflect and enjoy the moment.
The Brownhill Creek Recreation Park is open all year round and is suitable for all ages. The Park is also one of a few in Adelaide where dogs are welcome, so long as they are on a leash. Further details on the Brownhill Creek Recreation Park can be found on the National Parks website.