Snowtown is a medium sized town in the centre of the wheat growing and sheep farming area in the Mid North of South Australia, 145 km north of Adelaide. It is a typical county town servicing the local area.
The district is now home to South Australia’s biggest windfarm, generating power for more than 230 homes. One of the huge blades has been donated and is on display in the town. It is surprising how large it is. The turbines dot the Barunga and Hummocks Ranges along almost 30 kilometres and take in the properties of 24 landowners.
The windfarm built by Seimen’s has generated much needed revenue for the district with goods and services for a large construction workforce and ongoing royalties for local sheep graziers.
Snowtown was named by Governor Jervois in 1878 after a member of the Snow family, local pioneers. Snowtown rapidly grew with 3 general stores and other businesses serving the prosporous farming area.
A few kms east of town there's a cleft in the Barunga range, named Barunga Gap. Rainfall from the hills collects in Lake Bumbunga south of town. More lakes are near the highway and there is an old settlement known as Lake View. Snowtown Golf Course is a popular venue. A swampy region nearby is covered by saltbush and other salt-tolerant flora.
The town gained notoriety in 1999 when a gruesome discovery found a number of bodies in barrels in the disused bank building. The case was known as “the bodies in the barrels”. Most of the murders were committed elsewhere. Snowtown community leader Mr Paul McCormack says "The whole community was an innocent bystander.'' A movie and documentaries have been made.
Snowtown Community embraced the windfarm proposal as the district's rolling hills were ideal, it would bring in some much needed revenue and the sheep don't care. It would be good for the town to have a new identity as The Biggest Windfarm in South Australia.
It's a pleasant little town with a number of places whare the visitor can stop for lunch.