Wilpena Pound

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Wilpena Pound is a natural amphitheatre of mountains located north of Adelaide, South Australia, Australia in the heart of the Flinders Ranges National Park. The Pound is the most northern point with access via a sealed road in this part of the Flinders Ranges. The closest town to the north is Blinman and to the south, Hawker.

Attempts at farming the Pound failed during the early 20th century. Following this the tourism potential was recognised in 1945.


The area is part of the Adelaide Geosyncline. Despite early amateur theories that it was some kind of ancient volcano, the actual Pound is sedimentary rock in the form of a large syncline, with the fold axis running NNW-SSE through Edeowie Gorge at the northern end and Rawnsley's Bluff at the southern. A corresponding anticline is located in the adjacent Moralana Gorge, with the Elder Range on the downturned western limb. The area has given its name to the Wilpena Group of sedimentary rocks making up the younger sediments of the geosyncline, and names of further subdivisions also originate from the area: particularly the Pound Subgroup, made up of Rawnsley Quartzite and Bonney Sandstone.

Although from the outside the Pound appears as a single range of mountains, it is actually two: one on the western edge, and one on the eastern, joined by the long Rawnsley's Bluff at the south. A gorge called Wilpena Gap has been cut in the eastern range, and most of the inside of the Pound drains into Wilpena Creek which...
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