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Sorrel roving the land
Sorrel roving the land
Now to mustering

Burra Sheep Droving

Thursday, July 4, 2002
Sorrel takes to the land on horseback for a bit of mustering.

Graham Radford's properties around Burra are 50km apart. That is three days' droving time. One is in dry, pastoral country and the other is in rich, farming country, closer to town. He moves his flocks between the farming property — Basin Farm — and Glenora Station, the drier property, when the rains come.

Graham started Burra Trail Rides around eight years ago and he and his family are so entrenched in the area they are virtually inviting visitors to come to their home. Graham was born and raised on Glenora Station and his children are the fifth generation to live there.

He jackarooed around Australia in his youth, played polo for 10 years, and used those skills in England, Ireland and France.

Droving maintains the animals' condition as they graze along the way, but it is a mammoth exercise. Even with the maximum of 10-12 visitors and Bindi the dog, four other helpers are needed. Someone is allocated to drive the horse-drawn wagon, two on horseback keep the droving together and another is the truck driver. This vehicle carries camping gear, three freezers of food and drink and food and water for the animals.

Burra Trail Rides was almost abandoned in 2001. Graham and a group had set off with a flock of 500 when some vehicles came along and frightened them … more than half turned and ran back home. So there was a very embarrassed Graham, just like Little Bo Peep … a situation he can laugh at now, but not at the time!

The day gets underway at around 10am and inexperienced riders are given pointers along the way. The pace is fairly slow.

There is lots of wildlife to see along the ride through the wide open, dusty, yellow bush and scrubland. The six-year drought broke last year and the landscape gradually becomes bushy and fertile.

Towards the end of the day you catch up with the sheep and yard them for the night … a part of the operation that is a little more difficult for "greenhorns".

Camping spots are on other people's properties, but they are all keen to help tourism grow and are happy to have Graham and his groups there.

There are usually five two-person tents set up, but on warm evenings, people often like to sleep under the stars. You need to take along a sleeping bag, pillow and toiletries, but everything else is provided.

Dinner is enjoyed around a campfire, and one of Graham's helpers brings along his guitar, so there is a sing-a-long to complete a perfect day.

Location

Two-and-a-half hours north of Adelaide

Cost

Burra Sheep Droving costs $190 per adult per day for the three-day stock droving ride. All meals, snacks, horses, equipment, Drizabone, helmet, boots and overnight tent accommodation with swags are included. They operate year round.
Please note prices are valid at time of transmission and to the best of our knowledge are inclusive of GST.

More information

Burra Trail Rides
Ph: (08) 8892 2627
Fax: (08) 8892 2898

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