Exploring Cobbler Creek Conservation Park
Located in the hills face between Golden Grove and Salisbury is the Cobbler Creek Recreation Park. The park is named after William Pedler III, a shoemaker (cobbler) who was an early settler (1838) in the region and who used the lands for grazing and cropping. Expansion of city boundaries saw a need for the area to change, and in the early 1970's it was purchased by the State Government for recreation and conservation purposes.
Recent changes in the Park has seen the introduction of shared-use trails facilitating the introduction of cyclists in to the park. A restoration effort on the ruins in the Park is also underway, and the Park has now become a popular spot for locals to visit and enjoy the serenity. I visited the Park recently to see the improvements.
The valley terrain creates an ideal environment for mountain bikes with a combination of sweeping downhills and grinding uphill climbs. The cycling trails through the Park have been designed to enable everyone to participate, with several flatter trails along the original farm tracks designed for families to enjoy a pleasant weekend ride amongst the environment.
For the serious riders, the Valley Circuit and the Short and Sweet Trail provide multiple challenges and features while taking cyclists to the more remote areas of the Park. The winding downhills are great fun as is meandering through the bushes and through a tree which has been carefully created as part of the trail.
The Beginners Circuit is ideal for young kids looking for their first ride, while the Porosa Trail takes cyclists alongside Cobbler Creek amongst some stately river red gums and with some moderate climbs through some mallee box woodlands.
On the Southern side of the Park, there are a series of walking trails that pass through some scenic bird watching territory with the Mai Tappa Circuit being for walkers only. Mai Tappa means 'food pathway' in Kaurna language, and it is not unusual to hear a lively chorus of lorikeets and parrots chatting about the local food supplies while in the warmer months the sleepy lizards will soak up the sun while waiting for some insects to prey on.
Meanwhile on the larger northern part of the Park, the Porosa Trail is popular for walkers due to its scenery, albeit it is a single trail in some parts and is shared with the cyclists. Notwithstanding that, the view from the top of the hill in almost all directions is worthy of the short climb, while at the bottom the large 'once in a 100 year' flood mitigation dam is prominent, and dry.
The Ruins Loop is perfect for cyclists and walkers, and takes both past the three main historical parts of the Park. At the top of the hill is the ruins known as Teakle House. George Teakle owned the property during the 19th Century, but little else is known other than the property was vacant from around 1920 and detiorated quickly. In recent years the friends of Cobbler Creek have combined to restore the base and foundations of the building, and it now stands as a talking point on the top of the hill.
Heading down the hill, there is some farming equipment which is believed to have once been owned by George Teakle. Alongside this equipment is a cairn marking the original location where William Pedler's house "Trevalsa" once stood for almost 70 years in the 19th Century. Some scattered building stones and a beautiful tree enable visitors to reflect on the lands and the views that this pioneer may have experienced just over 100 years ago.
The Cobbler Creek Recreation Park is located on the Grove Way in Golden Grove and Salisbury East, and is open all year around. There are several entrances to the Park at the top and bottom of the hill, each with car parks. There are no facilities within the Park, and water runs in the creek for most of the year, except for Summer.
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