Use the Trail At Your Own Risk

The Clare Valley Wine & Wilderness Trail travels approximately 110km around the Clare Valley through a variety of landscapes from roads to paddocks.

Please refer the following Dangers & Risks be aware that use of the trail is strictly at your own risk.

Dangers & Risks

There are multiple potential dangers associated with use of the trail, please make yourself aware of these dangers and prepare appropriately.

Long Walking Distances

The trail is split into 6 stages, with each stage ranging in length from 14km to 23km.  Before embarking on walking the trail, users need to be in good physical condition and able to walk these distances.

Route

The trail is marked along its route with trail markers. These are an upright posts which display the CVWWT logo, together with an arrow indicating the direction to walk.

In addition, we supply maps of each section which are available from this site. We also upload the maps onto the Avenza GPS app.

Walkers need to take care that they are on the trail at all times. Please ensure you are carrying a trail map (current version) and that you are on the lookout for trail markers.

It can happen that trail markers fall over and are then mistakenly propped back up pointing the wrong way.  Regular use of the map, especially the GPS app, can ensure that you stay on the trail and do not get lost.

Terrain

No part of the CVWWT trail has been specifically constructed to accommodate walkers, rather a ‘goat track’ style trail has formed over time from consistent use.

Parts of the trail are relatively new, so not all sections will have a highly visible path to follow

The terrain along the trail varies greatly, walkers will need to navigate;

  • Steep hills.
  • Exposed ridgelines.
  • Creek crossings, some with steep banks.
  • Bitumen & dirt roads, shared with vehicles.
  • Wet and slippery conditions at times.
  • Fallen trees.
  • Uneven terrain & slippery rocks.

We recommend that walkers wear sturdy hiking boots and carry appropriate clothing for the conditions.  We encourage the use of walking poles on the trail, as some sections can be quite steep and slippery, especially when wet.

Snakes

Venomous brown snakes live in the Clare Valley and are sometimes seen on the trail.  Snake bite incidents have occurred on the trail.

At certain times of year, especially in Spring & Summer, long grass can make snakes difficult to spot.

We recommend that walkers wear leg protection (such as long pants or gaiters) while using the trail, especially when the grass is long.

We also recommend that you carry a first aid kit which includes a compression bandage, and that you educate yourself on what to do in the case of a snake bite.

If you or anyone in your group is bitten, immediately stop, call 000, and immobilise the person who has been bitten.

Bush Fires

The Clare Valley is at risk of dangerous bushfires over the warmer months.  We recommend not using any part of the trail during total fire ban days.  Please refer to cfs.org.au for the current fire danger rating.

Note that many sections of the trail which pass through private property are closed for the entire fire danger season (ie. from around November to April each year).

Vehicles & Roads

Where necessary, the trail follows roads.  These can be rarely used dirt roads or busy main roads.   Many sorts of vehicles use country roads, from small cars to huge B Double trucks, to tractors and farm machinery. Please take extra care when walking on or across roads.

Fences & Fence Stiles

There are over 60 fences to cross on the entire trail. Normally, at these points a designated fence stile will aid the crossing of the fence.

When using the fence stile, please take extra care.  If the fence stile is not secure, or wobbles, please do not use it and report the issue to the CVWWT committee.

Some fences use barbed wire and some fences are electric, please take extreme care at these fences.  Whilst precautions have been taken to help ensure your safety (such as polypipe being applied to the uppermost wire), jagging skin or clothing on barbed wire is never a pleasant experience.  Likewise, receiving an electric shock to ones genitals whilst navigating a stile will not make for a happy ending.

Exposure

The Clare Valley can get very cold – on occasions we even get snow – and some of our trail traverses exposed ridge lines which can be freezing in windy conditions.

At other times, we get temperatures in excess of 40 degrees.  Please check weather forecasts and ensure that you have the appropriate outdoor gear to cope.

Emergency

With common sense and extra caution, most incidents can be avoided, but in the unlikely event that you are involved in an emergency, please dial 000