The Breakaways

South Australia

Kanku – Breakaways Conservation Park consists of colourful low hills which have broken away from the Stuart Range, hence their name ‘The Breakaways.’ The two lookouts highlight the open spaces and colourful environment, leaving an impression of the long gone inland sea that our early explorers dreamt of. As the day goes by, the passing of the sun changes the desert colours, creating photogenic scenes that appear surreal.

Picnic Facilities
Scrambling or Climbing
No Dogs Permitted
Arid or Desert
Maximum Elevation
Total Climb

Getting there:

Head 21km north of Coober Pedy on the Stuart Highway and turn right (signposted) onto a graded road, which after 11km brings you to the car park and lookout area. 4WD recommended, but is accessible by conventional vehicle if you are careful.

There is an option (4WD only) to turn right just before the car park and take the track out to the 'dog fence' and back to Coober Pedy.


Kanku-Breakaways Conservation Park

Route/Trail notes:

From the car park and 1st lookout, head right to the 2nd lookout, where you will see a faint track along the ridge. Drop down the saddle and up the other side to the very end of the ridge. Return by the same route, but at the saddle, turn right and take the track to the base of the escarpment and follow this around to the left, to where, under the 1st lookout you will see a track up and a number of sandstone caves.

From the top, head past the 1st lookout along the ridge to your right, as far as you can go and then return to the car park.

There were various other tracks visible, but not explored.


Vehicle entry permit ($10.00 in 2019) can be purchased from Coober Pedy Visitor Information Centre. Fees collected are used for conservation and to maintain and improve park facilities.

Other References/Comments:

From the lookout, the locally named ‘Castle’ or ‘Salt & Pepper’ can be seen in an easterly direction. This outcrop has been used in a number of films and advertisements, while Panorama Hill situated in the middle, features in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome and Ground Zero.


A very cold and windy day on this scenic exposed bluff, where I just followed goat tracks along the ridges and up and down the escarpment.

F.A.B. on 30 May, 2019


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