A farm where the water never runs out

Spring Creek farm lives up to its name all year round

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Home on the range where the bore water is forever on tap. This unique property is up for sale.

Home on the range where the bore water is forever on tap. This unique property is up for sale.

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Farmer struck lucky with unique basin on tap

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It's an inland Garden of Eden that produces hay, Angus beef and crops where the water never runs out - and it's for sale.

The original owner Derek Knight (now 83) sold pumps to farms from the Northern Territory to South Australia. He told his son John that he liked a property he saw from his Cessna on a flight to Melrose with its big gums and location at the junction of two creeks and thought, 'Spring Creek could be a divine property'.

"Flood country is where the best fat cattle come from," he told his son.

The Knights run Angus on Spring Creek. The cattle are not part of the auction that will be held on November 28.

The Knights run Angus on Spring Creek. The cattle are not part of the auction that will be held on November 28.

The Knights irrigate several crops including lucerne, oats and vetch. They have access to unmetered water.

The Knights irrigate several crops including lucerne, oats and vetch. They have access to unmetered water.

The Knights bought the 253 hectare property, 15 kilometres out of both Wilmington and Melrose, on the southern side of the Flinders Ranges, in 1974. They had a hunch there was good underground water and in the middle of a drought they put down six bores, and at about 30m, struck liquid gold.

It wasn't Great Artesian Basin water they struck, but a unique underground source called the Willochra Basin, and it produced the best water you could want - virtually underground rainwater with a total dissolved solids reading of 374mg/litre (just above excellent and firmly in the good drinking range for humans).

The Knights wash in and drink the bore water untreated, and of course use as much as they need to get their crops of vetch, lucerne and oaten hay away, that they mainly sell to Alice Springs, but also sometimes to Broken Hill. And it is all unmetered water.

John Knight says it's a rare thing to have such water access and totally understands the terrible water crisis engulfing many parts of the nation. "I only passed a feedlot recently and saw how dry it was and I know how lucky we have been," he said. "We are very very lucky to have a supply that is still giving us what we need."

When asked how much water he used a year, he simply replied "I don't know. It just changes on whether we are doing cropping or concentrating on cattle." The Knights run about 80 Black Angus breeders.

They've had inquiries from all over Australia for the property, including many from NSW, with the property set to go to auction on November 28 through Ray White Rural at Melrose Town Hall at 1pm.

Ray White South Australia's Geoff Schell said thousands of tonnes of quality hay has gone north and into NSW from the Mid North region of SA over the last two years.

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