Akurra Trail

The Akurra trail, located in the Northern Flinders Ranges of South Australia, highlights the interlinked relationship of language, culture, tradition, and country. Waterways, hills, rocks and copper deposits reflect the journeys of Spiritual Ancestors. You are invited to view this land through the eyes of the Adnyamathanha people, to learn Muda (History, Songline) and uncover the significant flora and fauna of this ancient place.

Way markers guide users along 10.5km of remote bushland, departing from Leigh Creek township. Signs provide rich information about Adnyamathanha language, Muda, flora and fauna along the way.

Click here to download a PDF map before embarking on the trail, alternatively download Avenza and the Akurra trail map to stay on the path without using an internet connection.

Stay tuned for cultural tours! Contact Leigh Creek Area School for more information.

Yurlu Muda, Yurlu History

The Yurlu (Kingfisher man) Muda, is a culturally significant Muda to the Leigh Creek and surrounding areas. The Muda follows in the footsteps of Ancestral beings and explores the creation of the Leigh Creek Coal Field, the Copley Cutaway Hills and Wilpena Pound.

Wadu widina Akurra valurdupa ikaangga Arrunha Awi-nga. Mityilypilanha Wartawinha Ngarnangarrinha. Yura apinha yukudinha Ikara-nga warandananga Yurlu wirri-nandyu Marlkada nguthamanantyala.

Yurlu ila adlya wirri ikanda, wandyu utya Marlkada nguthandyalu. Yurlu widinangguwa Kakarlpunha-ngurni ardla nguthaanggu ardla vundu nguthantyalu tha mai ambantyalu.Akurra valurdupa-nga nakuangga ardla vundu ngutiika, wangirrianggu valurdupa ngadu-ngadu-nhangga. Akurra valurdupa ngukaanggu Arrunha-awi-ngurni Copley-thadi. Yurlu wirri-nga ngukanda tha valurdupa uranga urapaku. Akurra valurdupa-nga vambata-pila wandhaanggu Copley-nga. Vambata-pila mityi Wartawinha Ngarnangarrinha.

Yurlu wandhaanggala ardla ngutiitandyu mai adna wandhaanggala anhanga. Inhaadi Yurlu-ru virla adina wanditha anhanga. Ardla wirdni adina wanditha anhanga tha muku mai adina wanditha anhanga.

Yurlu ngukanda Ikara-thadi. Akurra valurdupa ngukaangga Yurlu-nha uranga. Akurra valurdupa-nga idla nguthangga ngarlaka milyaru tha mathianggadna ngarlkuntyan-pila Yura apinha. Akurra valurdupa-nga Yura apinha ngalkuanggu. Inhamathanha Yurlu, marra Vardnapa ubmanaka, marra Wilyaru ubmanaka yadna utya wirrikangga. Akurra valurdupa-nga vambata wandhaanggu Ikara-nga. Valurdupa adina ikanda yulhupa.

A very long time ago, a giant serpent couple (Akurra valurdupa) were living in the waterhole at Aroona (Arrunha Awi). Their names were Wartawinha and Ngarnangarrinha. At this time many people (Yura) were gathering together at Wilpena Pound (Ikara) with the intention of holding an important ceremony (Marlkada). They were awaiting the arrival of the Kingfisher man (Yurlu). He was the ceremonial leader and was to conduct the Marlkada.

Yurlu came south from Termination Hill (Kakarlpunha). He stopped to make a large fire near Copley to cook damper and to send a smoke signal to the people waiting at Ikara. The Akurra couple saw the smoke and so the two became greedy and hatched a plan. They left Arrunha Awi and travelled towards Copley to wait for Yurlu to go past so that they could follow behind. They two mesas (hills) at Copley are the two serpents curled up, watching and waiting. The names of the two hills are Wartawinha and Ngarnangarrinha.

Yurlu left his fire burning and left some dampers cooking. Yurlu’s coal is still there. It is the coal field. Yurlu’s firestick and dampers have been found there.

Yurlu travelled on to Ikara, with the Akurra following on behind. The Akurra couple surrounded the people and then made a large whirlwind to catch them. They caught and ate the people but Yurlu, one new Vardnapa (initiated man – first stage) and one new Wilyaru (fully initiated man) escaped. The hills encircling Wilpena Pound are the Akurra surrounding the people. They will remain there forever.

Adnyamathanha yarta is full of life and abundant in both varlu (meat) and mai (vegetable food). The Adnyamathanha look to the country and sky for markers to read their environment. Scroll down to learn about different markers for different seasons, pay attention to the months in which the seasons occur.

Warlda Summer (November – March)

Udilhi Winter (May – August)


Wirdluka Spring (August – October)

Please note: No fires are permitted on this trail.

The development of this trail is a partnership between the Leigh Creek Country Progress Association, Leigh Creek Area School, and the Mobile Language Team with funding from SA Health. This content remains the property of the Adnyamathanha community.