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South Australia
Blinman main street
Blinman is located in South Australia
Coordinates31°05′37.1″S 138°40′41″E / 31.093639°S 138.67806°E / -31.093639; 138.67806Coordinates: 31°05′37.1″S 138°40′41″E / 31.093639°S 138.67806°E / -31.093639; 138.67806[1]
Population35 (2016 census)[2]
Established1864 (Blinman)[3]
1867 (Blinman North)[4]
23 October 2003 (locality)[1][5]
Elevation610 m (2,001 ft)[7]
Time zoneACST (UTC+9:30)
 • Summer (DST)ACDT (UTC)
Location425 km (264 mi) north of Adelaide
LGA(s)Pastoral Unincorporated Area[1]
RegionFar North[1]
State electorate(s)Stuart[8]
Federal division(s)Grey[9]
Mean max temp[10] Mean min temp[10] Annual rainfall[10]
26.4 °C
80 °F
12.8 °C
55 °F
223.9 mm
8.8 in
Localities around Blinman:
Oratunga Station Oratunga Station
Oratunga Station
Blinman Angorigina
Gum Creek Station Gum Creek Station
Adjoining localities[1]

Blinman is a locality incorporating two towns located in the Australian state of South Australia within the Flinders Ranges about 425 kilometres (264 mi) north of the state capital of Adelaide. It is very small but has the claim of being the highest surveyed town in South Australia. It serves as a base for large acre pastoralists and tourism. The town is just north of the Flinders Ranges National Park, is 60 kilometres north of Wilpena Pound.


Indigenous people[edit]

This land belonged to the Adnyamathanha tribe, of Indigenous Australians prior to colonisation. One of their unique customs was burn offs (controlled bushfires) to promote plant growth in the future seasons.

European settlement[edit]

The first European settlement around the current Blinman, was firstly of Angorichina Station. This land was taken up for sheep farming in the 1850s. A shepherd employed by the station, Robert Blinman, discovered a copper outcrop on a hot December day in 1859. Blinman gambled some of his money on the presence of more underground copper and received a mineral application in 1860. On 1 January 1861, Blinman and three friends, Alfred Frost, Joe Mole and Henry Alfred, received the lease for the land that became Blinman.[11]

Mining was successful in the first year and the mine became known as Wheal Blinman. The original four leaseholders sold their mine in February 1862, for about 150 times the purchase price. The new owners were the Yudnamutana Copper Mining Company of South Australia, who also owned a rich deposit north of Blinman. The mine was very successful during the 1860s and the site became permanent, with buildings being constructed and more miners moving to the area, some from the Burra mine. The hardest problems at the time were the transport of Ore and the finding of water. Over the next 20 years, railways were developed and wells were sunk at regular intervals making settlement easier.

Family life was hard in the early days. Both water and firewood had to be brought from long distances from the mine. This job was left to the women and their elder children while the men were working. Many pregnancies failed in the early years and there were several deaths reported from inflammation of the lungs. With the original tent settlement being very close to the mine, it was very hard to escape the fine dust generated. A hotel and post office were first opened in Blinman in 1863. In 1864, a government surveyor laid out 162 allotments about three km from the mine. This was named Blinman. The population was about 1,500 by 1868 and the first school opened that year. Decent shops in the main street developed in 1869. The striking of regular water in the mine the same year secured a regular water supply for the town.

Mining continued until 1918 when the ore ran out. The busiest time for the mine was 1913–1918 with a town population of 2,000. The total ore removed was about 10,000 tonnes.[12]

Administrative area history[edit]

The locality of Blinman consists of land occupying the northern end of the cadastral unit of the Hundred of Carr and includes the government towns of Blinman and Blinman South which according to the official source, do "still exist" and which are located about 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) apart along the Flinders Ranges Way.[1][3][4]

The government town of Blinman was surveyed in January 1864 without an official government proclamation and was named after Robert Blinman.[3] The government town of Blinman North was surveyed in July 1867 on nearby land and also was not the subject of an official proclamation.[4] In 1986, the former Blinman was renamed Blinman South, and the former Blinman North was renamed Blinman.[13]

In October 2003, the locality of Blinman was created, incorporating both towns within new boundaries. On 26 April 2013, additional land was added to the locality.[5][1]

Heritage listings[edit]

Blinman has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:


Tourists travel to this area to enjoy the Outback of South Australia and to see the ancient geology of the area. The town is close to Brachina Gorge and Parachilna Gorge. These two rarely have flowing water in them. Also nearby are the Blinman Pools. The town is a stop off on the way to Arkaroola. The copper mine at one end of the town is another attraction.[citation needed]

The town itself boasts a pub, general store, a church and a cafe/gallery. There are tennis courts, a golf course and a cricket pitch, though they see sporadic use. Fuel is not available.[citation needed]

The two most popular events in the town are a Land Rover jamboree held over the Easter long weekend and Cook Out Back. Both events are held during the Australian winter because of the searing heat during summer.[citation needed]

Land Rover Jamboree[edit]

Cook Out Back 2004 (main street)

This event was a meeting place for Land Rover enthusiasts from around Australia organized by the Land Rover Register of South Australia, There are competitions, tag-a-long tours and parties. Competitions include non-timed trial course and 'Best of Breed' car judging. In 2012 the event moved to Melrose South Australia.[17]

Cook Out Back[edit]

Cook Out Back is a relaxed campfire cooking competition held over the October long weekend (Labour Day) in the town. One meal is a roast prepared using a camp oven on a bed of coals. This annual event attracts over 500 people to the town, who can be found camping throughout the area. It attracts many people from Adelaide, South Australia and is the biggest event on the town's calendar, bringing in much-needed tourist money to the area. Each team's cooking is usually judged by a group of local celebrities and there is $3,000 prize for the winning team. This event is run by the Blinman Hotel.[18]


Blinman is located within the federal division of Grey, the state electoral district of Stuart and the Pastoral Unincorporated Area of South Australia.[9][8][1] As of 2019, the community within Blinman received municipal services from a South Australian government agency, the Outback Communities Authority.[19]

The Aboriginal Regional Authority for the Blinman area is the Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association.[20]

In popular culture[edit]

  • In the 2011 novel Angorichina, the character of Heath Denbow came from, and was buried at, Blinman.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Search result for 'Blinman, Locb' with the following datasets selected - 'Suburbs and Localities', 'Counties', Government Towns', 'SA Government Regions', 'Gazetteer'and 'Local Government Areas'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 9 January 2019.
  2. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Blinman (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 9 January 2019. Edit this at Wikidata
  3. ^ a b c "Search results for "Blinman, GTWN" with the following datasets selected - 'Suburbs and Localities', 'Government Towns', 'Hundreds' and 'Gazetteer'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 16 April 2019. The is the original Blinman which was surveyed in 1864
  4. ^ a b c "Search results for "Blinman, GTWN" with the following datasets selected - 'Suburbs and Localities', 'Government Towns', 'Hundreds' and 'Gazetteer'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 16 April 2019. The is the new Blinman which was renamed in 1986
  5. ^ a b Weatherill, Jay (23 October 2003). "GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES ACT 1991 Notice to Assign Names and Boundaries to Places" (PDF). The South Australian Government Gazette. Government of South AustralIA. p. 3859. Retrieved 14 April 2019. Assign the names YUNTA, BLINMAN, BOOKABIE, GLENDAMBO, YALATA, KINGOONYA, OLARY, INNAMINCKA, and MANNA HILL, to those areas Out of Councils and shown numbered 1 to 9 on Rack Plan 857 (Sheet 3)
  6. ^ a b "Postcode for Blinman, South Australia". Postcodes Australia. Retrieved 14 April 2019.
  7. ^ "Search result for 'Blinman, GTWN' with the following datasets selected - Government Towns' and 'Gazetteer'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 16 April 2019. Map shows contours at the site of the new Blinman
  8. ^ a b "District of Stuart Background Profile (2014-2018 boundaries)". Electoral Commission SA. Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  9. ^ a b "Federal electoral division of Grey" (PDF). Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  10. ^ a b c "Summary (climate) Summary statistics LEIGH CREEK AIRPORT (nearest weather station)". Commonwealth of Australia, Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
  11. ^ Blinman South Australia History Accessed 9/1/07
  12. ^ Walkabout - Blinman Archived 31 December 2005 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed 13 January 2007
  13. ^ Abbott, R.K. (20 March 1986). "GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES ACT, 1969-1982" (PDF). The South Australian Government Gazette. Government of South Australia. p. 593. Retrieved 16 April 2019. the Geographical Names Board has recommended that the name of that town defined hereunder in The First Schedule be altered from Blinman to Blinman South and the name of that town defined hereunder in The Second Schedule be altered from Blinman North to Blinman
  14. ^ "Blinman Dome Diapir (designated place of geological significance)". South Australian Heritage Register. Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources. Archived from the original on 16 February 2016. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  15. ^ "Blinman Mine & Mine Manager's Cottage". South Australian Heritage Register. Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources. Archived from the original on 16 February 2016. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  16. ^ "Dwelling and Dugout". South Australian Heritage Register. Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources. Archived from the original on 16 February 2016. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  17. ^ Blinman 2007 Archived 8 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 9/1/07
  18. ^ Blinman Hotel
  19. ^ "Blinman". Outback Communities Authority. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  20. ^ "Department of State Development Press Release regarding Aboriginal Regional Authorities" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2017.

External links[edit]

Media related to Blinman, South Australia at Wikimedia Commons