Kulgera to Uluru
Jul 17, 2011
|We arrived at the Ayers rock Campground at around 1pm on Friday - for the first time we have a site which has a concrete slab. The cost per night for a powered site for two adults is $41. The caravan park is arranged around a lookout from which you can see the rock, so in a way the park has its own viewing platform.
Saturday – Jim and I left early for The Rock. The Rock and The Olgas are situated in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. The fee to enter the park is $25.00 per adult and is valid for 3 days.
It really is a magnificent sight to see The Rock rising from the broad desert plain, it is really spectactually. Initially we didn’t think we would climb The Rock but changed our minds once we got there. Climbing The Rock has always been one of my dreams, so I was really pleased that I was able to accomplish it.
The climbing path is a very strenuous climb (there have been over 35 deaths at Ayers Rock mainly due to heart attacks) and the climb takes about two hours to complete. The climb was steeper and harder than we both expected. The first part has a chain to hold on to. If the chain was not there I'm sure the vast majority of people wouldn’t be able to climb up the first part of The Rock, including us. The climb took us around 1 ½ to 2 hours this also included spending some time at the top taking pictures and talking to people. I felt the weather was perfect to do the climb as it was overcast and only around 15 degrees.
After finishing the walk, we went off on one of the marked trails around the bottom of The Rock. The walk took us past a number of caves; an interesting aspect of one of the caves was viewing aboriginal art.
My personal impression of The Rock is that it is a spectacular and an outstanding sight and is a must to see if you are visiting the Red Centre. I am in total awe of the whole experience, words cannot explain how I feel about the experience.
We all decided to go and view The Rock at sunset as you always hear about how stunning the Rock is at sunset. The viewing area was packed, standing room only and we all waited in anticipation but unfortunately it turned out to be a no event. I'm not sure whether the changing colours are impacted on what time of the year it is, the weather, or other conditions but it didn't happen for us but hey maybe next time.
Sunday – We visited the Kata Tjuta, also known as The Olgas. The Olgas consist of 28 fascinating dome shaped rock outcrops and are located 26 km west of Uluru. We did two of the walks around the Olgas. The first one was the Valley of the Winds Walk which is along a 7km track that circles several of the Olgas we only did part of the walk.
The other walk is the Olga Gorge Walk (Tatintjawiya), which is a 2km walk into the beautiful gorge. The Gorge Walk was an easy walk and very enjoyable. Deep canyons, small valleys and creeks make it a little paradise which is fascinating.
The weather has improved 100%, we actually had a full day of sunshine and it is warm (we are in T-Shirts) and we don't need the heater on tonight.
Diesel is $1.835 per litre
History lesson - Uluru is a large sandstone rock formation in central Australia, in the Northern Territory. It is located in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, 350 km southwest of Alice Springs. It is the second-largest monolith in the world (after Mount Augustus, also in Australia), more than 348 m (986 ft) high and 8 km (5 miles) around. It also extends 2.5 km (1.5 miles) into the ground, like an iceberg, it has most of its bulk below the surface.
It is a sacred part of Aboriginal creation mythology, or dreamtime - reality being a dream. Uluru is considered one of the great wonders of the world and one of Australia's most recognisable natural icons.
Forty kilometres to the west of Uluru/Ayers Rock is Kata Tjuta, also known as The Olgas. Kata Tjuta actually means 'many heads' in traditional Aboriginal language. This massive pile of rock domes dates back 500 million years. Kata Tjuta actually means 'many heads' in traditional Aboriginal language. The alternative name, The Olgas, comes from the tallest peak, Mt. Olga. At the behest of Baron Ferdinand von Mueller, Mt. Olga was named in 1872 by Ernest Giles, in honour of Queen Olga of Wurttemberg. The Olgas consist of 28 fascinating dome shaped rock outcrops and are located 26 km west of Uluru.
Both Uluru and Kata Tjuta have great aboriginal cultural significance for the Anangu traditional landowners. End of lesson
We are off to Kings Canyon tomorrow.