Central Australia – Part I

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Although we have ventured out back before, most people wouldn’t say they have fully experienced the outback until they have delved deep into the red centre of Australia. And this is exactly what we set out to do over ten days in April.

Like everyone else who visits Central Australia, we were headed to see the giant monolith known as Ayer’s Rock, or Uluru (its traditional aboriginal name). But as we’ll show you, there was plenty more to see in the vast emptiness of the surrounding area.

We would begin our trip in Alice Springs, the largest town in the area with a whopping population of over 27,000! To tackle the task that would lie ahead, our first order of business was to pick up a 4WD high-clearance camper-van. This would serve as our transportation and accommodation for the next ten days. We had electricity, a fridge, a gas stove, and a double bed… talk about luxury!

From Alice Springs we headed west into the West MacDonnell Ranges and were treated to a scenic drive through an ancient red landscape amidst gorgeous blue skies.

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One of the highlights of the region was the Ormiston Pound Walk, which climbs to a ridge-top lookout before descending through Ormiston Gorge and ending at a refreshing waterhole about 4 hours later.

In addition to the gorgeous landscape and geological features of the region, we were hoping to see some giant red roos. But surprisingly, we didn’t see a single one! (Other than the occasional carcass on the side of the highway). However, there was no shortage of wildlife encounters. For example, we were ecstatic to see some beautiful wild horses, or brumbies:

Apparently there are more horses in the wild in Australian than any other country. We were also surprised to to encounter some wild Australian camels! These are descended from camels imported in the late 1800s and now rove across the Australian outback in the only feral herds of their kind in the world. There are an estimated one million of them in Australia. Here they are, crossing the road on the way to Kata Tjuta and Uluru:

Okay, so there’s much more to come, but in the mean time you can check out the photos from the West MacDonnell Ranges and some miscellaneous ones around Central Australia.

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