Call an Australian luxury travel designer at The Tailor on: +61 (0)8 8354 4405

Australian Hand-Crafted Journeys

Have you ever hunted for 500-million-year-old fossils in South Australia’s rugged Flinders Ranges?

BLOG | Journey through fractured landscapes and rugged mountain ranges to uncover ancient fossils in South Australia’s scenic Flinders Ranges
People looking for fossils. The Prairie Hotel, South Australia

Jagged mountain ranges, painted in burnt-orange splendour are the unique characteristics distinguishing South Australia’s Flinders Ranges. Whilst these ancient mountain ranges contain considerable beauty and fascinating First Nation and colonial histories, their true treasure lies concealed in ancient rock formations, long since hidden from the modern world.

Over 75 years ago, South Australian geologist, Reg Sprigg, discovered the fossilised remains of an entire community of ancient, ocean dwelling, soft-bodied creatures. This marked the first time they had been found in such abundance and so the Ediacaran Period was named after the discovery location. Forty years later, Ross Fargher, owner of iconic outback pub, the Prairie Hotel, unearthed another set of superb fossil specimens on his cattle station in Nilpena. From these discoveries, an incredible array of early lifeforms have been identified, providing significant insight into animal life on earth more than 500-million-years ago. Including two new prehistoric organisms found in 2018 – Obamus coronatus named in honour of US President Barrack Obama and the other Attenborites janeae after renowned British naturalist Sir David Attenborough.

A journey out to the Flinders Ranges is an absolute MUST for any enthusiast of geology, palaeontology, history, or any avid outback adventurer. The unique opportunity to explore ancient landscapes cannot be overlooked.

The Prairie Hotel is the perfect place to begin your adventure to the Flinders Ranges, this outback oasis welcomes guests in elegant country style and offers memorable dining options, house-brewed beers and plenty of local knowledge. Not only is the Prairie excellently placed for exploring the region, but owner Ross Fargher can also arrange private excursions out to Nilpena to view his original discovery site and learn more about these fascinating and insightful Ediacaran fossils.

Extend your time in the region and journey out to Arkaba, a 60,000-acre private wildlife conservancy that is dedicated to conserving Australia’s unique fauna. Nestled between Wilpena Pound and the Elder Range, Arkaba offers spectacular scenery, exceptional wildlife encounters and visits to ancient Aboriginal sites.

The Tailor Touring Co. also offers an exciting opportunity to join a professor of palaeontology at the South Australian Museum, who will take you on a private behind-the-scenes tour of the museum’s palaeontology collection and discuss the evolutionary implications these fossil discoveries present.

Contact our talented Travel Designers today to help you create your dream expedition to the Flinders Ranges or to whet your archaeological appetite across other parts of the country.

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