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Cycling at Gluepot Reserve in the Riverland

Home > Adelaide > Photography | Nature | Escape the City | Cycling | Camping
by Paul Gould (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer addicted to cycling and coffee.
Published June 16th 2015
Birds, bikes and bushland
birds, wildlife, robin
Red Capped Robin; a regular visitor to our campsite


Looking for somewhere different to ride. Somewhere flat! Gluepot Reserve, 50km north of Waikerie could be the place for you.

ferry, River Murray, Waikerie
Taking the ferry at Waikerie


Gluepot has a network of more than 100km of bush tracks available for riding. These are station tracks, with plentiful patches of loose sand and some areas of limestone so don't be bringing your road bike. A mountain bike or at least a hybrid with suitable tyres is required. Running tubeless tyres with goo should be considered to reduce the chances of a puncture.

bike, mountain bike, trail riding
Riding the station tracks; a great way to explore Gluepot Reserve


There may be the odd area of deeper sand where you may end up walking your bike but having the right tyres, lower tyre pressures and a bit of stubborn persistence will get you through most of these patches. And, hey, if you do fall, its soft sand right.

camping, Gluepot
Campsites are well marked


camping, camper, Ultimate camper
Bush camping; a dropout loo is provided but campers need to be self sufficient


Gluepot is a Pastoral Station purchased by Birdlife Australia in 1997 and now managed for conservation purposes. Prior to 1997 it was used for sheep grazing and also carried a significant feral goat population. In keeping with Birdlife Australia's biodiversity conservation management philosophy, artificial waters have been closed, feral animals controlled and all stock removed. Gluepot is now under a South Australian Heritage Agreement and forms part of the National Reserves System. A marked contrast visible along parts of the northern boundary fence readily demonstrates the positive effect the reduction in total grazing pressure has had on vegetation condition.

mallee, spinifex, conservation
Mallee over spinifex woodland on deep sands


On arrival at Gluepot, drop in to the modern Visitor Information Centre to register. Bush camping is available at three sites across the property, each equipped with a drop pit toilet. Camping is only $10 per night per vehicle. Day access only is $5 per day per vehicle. The Centre has some great displays on the biodiversity and management of the reserve plus a range of pamphlets to help you enjoy your visit. A range of relevant books and merchandise are also available for purchase.

lizard, dragon, wildlife
Painted Dragon; another campsite visitor


If you are planning to ride, then make sure you pick up the free "Cycling at Gluepot" pamphlet. which includes a summary of track conditions and some helpful hints on riding within the reserve.

bird hide, birds, bird watching
Bird hides allow you to observe and photograph up close


birds, bird watching, conservation
Collared Sparrow Hawk taken from a bird hide


On our visit we camped at the Bellbird Campsite. This campsite is amongst mallee woodland over woody shrubs and close to mallee over spinifex. It proved to be a good base to range out from each day on our rides. First light at this campsite was just wonderful with an abundance of birdlife surrounding our camper each morning.

This is a remote area so ensure you carry sufficient water, spare tube, pump, a map, GPS or compass and let someone else know where you are riding. There is no mobile coverage so you may consider carrying a handheld UHF radio.

goats, feral animals, conservation
One way ramp for feral goat control


The Gluepot Reserve website includes a useful visitor information pack and a map to help plan your visit. A larger map with grid is available at the Visitor Information Centre.

So pack up your bikes and bird books and checkout Gluepot Reserve.

bird watching, birds, conservation
White browed Babbler; at Bellbird Campsite

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Why? Mountainbiking, bush camping, bird watching
When: anytime except hot summer months
Phone: (08)88928600
Where: Gluepot Reserve
Cost: Camping $10 over night per vechicle; $5 per vehicle day visit
Your Comment
Great photos, well done
by Steve Hudson (score: 3|1230) 794 days ago
Interesting! Thanks for writing this.
by Paul Arguile (score: 2|133) 793 days ago
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