Sunday, 15 December 2019

Albert River Circuit (Walking Track) Green Mountains, Lamington National Park

Accessed from O'Reilly's, the Albert River circuit features many pleasant waterfalls, ancient beech trees, rare wildlife, spectacular lookout points and accessible trails.
Lightning Falls

Gurrgunngulli Falls

Lamington Spiny Crayfish

Nothofagus moorei
Soon after turning off from the Border Track, visitors are greeted by magnificent specimens of the oldest living creatures on the planet: 3,000-12,000 year-old Antarctic Beech.

One does not see beech orchids and ferns everyday.

It's not often you get to chat to a 10,000 year-old creature either.

Remnants of old signposts (in imperial units of Miles) still mark the trail.

There are also signs of other creatures in these forests.

These rock-hopping creatures are crossing one of the many creeks.

Alcheringa Falls

Gwahlahla Falls

Joolbahla Falls

Mirror Falls

Gurrgunngulli Falls

Echo Falls

Lightning Falls

Echo Point Lookout.

Saturday, 26 October 2019

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

26 October 2019 marks the 34th anniversary of the 1985 ‘handback’ of Uluru to its traditional owners. It is also the date of closure of climbing the rock. To celebrate this long overdue occasion, I am posting some photos of the many natural features– reasons to visit and experience this remarkable place, one of the great geographical wonders of the world. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is a living cultural and natural landscape that belongs to the Anangu of the Western Desert region of Australia. The park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the ancestral heartland and sacred country to the Aboriginal inhabitants who have lived here for tens of thousands of years. At the center of this national park in the desert plains is the towering physical and cultural heart of Australia, a red sandstone monolith called Uluru.
Uluru from across the native spinifex and the twigs of a hardy desert oak.

A cave formation on Uluru at the Mala Walk.

Along the Lungkata walk where one can learn about the joint management of the park by the Anangu and National Parks, interweaving two legal systems (western and traditional).

Uluru at sunset
There is a colour unique to the red centre - a hue of purple-pink. It paints the landscape for a few minutes during sunset.
But this is visible only on the peripheral vision.
There, do you see it?

Uluru sunrise

Kata Tjuta. Valley of the winds.

Going to Walpa Gorge

Walpa Gorge

One time at sunset I was lost in a trance staring across the sand dunes.  I was attempting to extend the periphery of my vision, stretching my neck this way and that, to capture the special unique pinkish purple colour, when instead the periphery of my hard hearing was shattered by my phone ringing.
Caller: “Where are you calling from?
Visitor to Uluru: “A rock in the red centre. I am calling like the echo of an eagle hawk that cries/ one more time before it glides behind the big rock where she flies.”

Sunrise from Talinguru Nyakunytjaku. This reminds of another place - Talinguroy Lookout in Wangal, Benguet - where one can witness the sunset paint the skies bright orange.
The colours of Uluru are ever-changing. From one location or one moment to the next, the rock changes hue from rust to red and all shades in between. Then depending on the season or weather, it can go from purple into grey across the spectrum.
Under the endless canopy of the blue sky, the sparse vegetation and stunted trees, the desert oaks and mulga, the tjinpi (spinifex) - these plants add a vibrancy to red sand-dunes, ridges and rocks and dry creek beds.

And I must be sunburnt, but it's iron oxide that gives the soil of the arid outback its distinctive red colour. Crimson flames at noon and violets at dawn, they also go from orange to purple at sunrise and sunset.
Kuniya Walk

Rock art at the Kulpi Nyiinkaku (teaching cave). Generations of grandfathers painted these pictures, and taught young boys how to hunt.

A sacred site Mutitjulu.

Many spots around Uluru are sensitive sites. 
Be mindful of the significance of them and acknowledge tradition and culture. 
A very dry Kantju Gorge in the drought.
Numerous waterfalls would be flowing down the rock face during rains. 

On the base walk. Go to learn and discover a deeper understanding of the sacred places.

Looking across the flat arid landscape towards kata Tjuta.
It was late September and the piriya (warm wind) from the north and west has arrived.

From the adjacent sunset viewing area.
Kata Tjuta is comprised of 36 conglomerate sedimentary rocks
From the dune viewing area.

1983 was the dawn of a new age for Uluru.
After a long stalemate, PM Bob Hawke handed back Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park to the Anangu people.
Hawke: “This is an historic decision and is a measure of the willingness of the government, on behalf of the Australian people, to recognise the just and legitimate claims of a people who have been dispossessed of their land but who have never lost their spiritual attachment to that land.”

Uluru is arkose sandstone made of sedimentary rock

In Uluru you won’t run out of things to do. There are tours on various transport modes, and they encompass astronomy, arts and crafts, ecology and garden walks. 

"Walk around the base and discover a deeper understanding of this place."

Sunset at Kata Tjuta.

n.b. please notify the blogger if there are any 'not-permitted' photos posted here inadvertently.