True Grit Obstacle Course at Caudo Vineyard | Cadell | Review

True Grit Obstacle Course at Caudo Vineyard.

Run, crawl and climb your way through this military-inspired obstacle course at a riverside winery in the Riverland.

Review by Carla Caruso

There’s nothing like a drive to a picturesque winery in the countryside.

It gets a little more intense, however, when you add in a military-inspired obstacle, or several, to the experience!

You might’ve heard of endurance events like Tough Mudder and the Colour Run. Well, True Grit is another such event.

It’s held annually at the beautiful Caudo Vineyard in the Riverland’s Cadell – about a two-hour drive from the city.

As it says on the website:

True Grit is the only Australian owned and operated military-inspired obstacle course, created by Australian special forces.

It is the perfect mix of physical and mental challenges, delivered through fun, fitness and friends, to give racers of all ages and fitness levels a sense of achievement and accomplishment.

True Grit exists to help everyday Australians feel alive by getting them outside their comfort zones and connecting with their true sense of self.

I recently attended the April 2024 event with my gym mates from D8 Training. You can take your pick from a 5km or 10km course – we went the ‘easier’ option. Groups go through at different ‘wave’ times.

People of all fitness levels are encouraged. Age-wise, participants need to be a minimum of 16 years of age for the 10km course and a minimum of 12 years for the 5km course. (And anyone under 18 must have a parent or guardian sign a waiver for them to join in.)

Younger kids, meanwhile, can just spectate, running alongside the adults and cheering them on. A nice change from the parents being on the sidelines at kids’ sport on the weekend!

The course winds its way through the 450ha property, tracking across vineyards, woodlands, water bodies, and silky sand dunes.

You’ll feel like you’re taking part in reality show SAS Australia, navigating everything from pontoon bridges to climbing walls, ramps, and monkey bars.

How many of the obstacles you do is up to you, though it’s good to at least give each a try. I’m scared of heights, so some things — like climbing over A-frames — I only got halfway on. I also wasn’t much good with anything involving ropes, including hanging upside down from one while trying to cross a waterway. Indiana Jones, look out!

The last stretch of the course involves walking through a muddy channel and floating through little tunnels (not for the claustrophobic). Then you wash off all the gunk by slipping down a water slide into the river and swimming to the finish line. (Some people – including me – skipped the water part to avoid having a soggy ride home.) There are showers and changerooms on-site, however.

At the end, you collect a T-shirt and drink to mark making it to the finish line. There’s also a festival area by the river, where you can relax and enjoy fare from food trucks. As well, you can check into the vineyard’s cellar door while there.

If you feel like making a weekend of it, you can camp for free at Hogwash Bend Conservation Park.

Event tickets cost about $113 per person, and parking at the vineyard is $10.

You do feel a sense of achievement, making it to the end of the course, and you definitely won’t have any trouble sleeping that night!

What we like about it

  • It was a perfect, sunny autumn day when we attended and the location couldn’t have been more perfect. It was lovely sitting in the festival area afterwards and watching boats and jet-skis zip by at Hogwash Bend.
  • As it says on the website, the philosophy behind the event is “a happier, healthier Australia through competition and camaraderie”. It’s good pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone!
  • Participants can help raise funds for the Black Dog Institute and Invictus Australia, adding to the feel-good vibes.

Things to consider

It’s worthwhile carrying a water bottle (or small backpack) with you on the course. There’s a water station around the halfway mark, but we were thirsty before that.

Coffee and food options nearby

We stopped in for a fuel-up at Truro’s Sunrise Bakery along the way. And, at the end of the course, there’s a festival area by the river with food trucks galore. I certainly enjoyed my lemon sorbet after finishing!


Caudo Vineyard – Hogwash Bend Conservation Park, Cadell, South Australia

Participants need to be a minimum of 16 years of age for the 10km course and a minimum of 12 years for the 5km course.

Review by Carla Caruso

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For more information and all enquiries please visit the True Grit website.

All photos by James Elsby for Play & Go Adelaide 

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

As per all our Play & Go reviews, this is not a sponsored post and our review is done completely independently. All photos are by Play & Go (unless specified).


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