The Flinders Ranges, which stretches to around 300 km, are home to nearly half SA's 3100 plant species, more than 120 bird, 86 reptile, 20 mammal species. Not real sure where the boundary is between Southern, Central and Northern.
I love the area - I could live here except that it gets too hot. It rained a lot during my visit but I'm sure that's not always the case.
Attractions here are bushwalking, native animals, high peaks, caves, gorges, Wilpena Pound, 4wd tracks, wildflowers in spring.
It is an important area for Aboriginal culture, with numerous landmarks, tourist attractions, walking trails, etc with Aboriginal names and significance to Adnyamathanha people. There are also many painting, etching and rock carving sites.
As far as European attempts to tame the country, the large number of ruins, of failed sheep stations or abandoned townships, are reminders that nature does not look kindly on those who try to get from the land that which it is not willing or capable of giving up.
Unusually good rainfall in the 1870s led to the opening of agricultural land, which failed when rainfall returned to normal, and some of this former agricultural land has been recovered by the Flinders Ranges National Park.
The narrow gauge rail north of Port Augusta through Pichi Richi Pass, Quorn, Hawker and west of the ranges was important in opening up and servicing sheep and cattle stations. Much of this rail is now disused, although the Pichi Richi Railway has become a major tourist attraction.
There was some mining in the early days of European settlement, but nothing long-term.