Monday, July 31, 2017


We didn’t manage to get up as early as we had planned this morning.  I think we are all worn out (Well at least I am)  I am feeling pretty exhausted.  We have had very little down time yet as there is so much to see.    We had a pretty hearty breakfast and set off about 9.30am to head out to Kata Tjuta.  It was quite a drive as it is over 50kms away.  We arrived at the sunrise viewing platform, but by the time we got there it was pretty much deserted.  It was a good kilometre walk to the platform, but the views were stunning.  I think I also enjoyed the walk seeing all the beautiful plants and wildflowers.  


They are not big flowers, but quite often you could miss them as they are pretty small, but have a beauty all of their own.  This is not how I pictured a desert to be.  This place is teaming with life,  lots of lovely shrubs, desert oaks, grevilleas,  wild flowers,  none of the sandy barren desert you picture in your mind.    I have a new love and appreciation for the desert.  There is something quite magical about it,  the richness of colours,  the vibrancy is something that no photo will do justice too… You really have to see it for yourself.

We arrived at the “Valley of the Winds” walk around 10.45am and Steve set off for the big walk.  He was the only one doing it this morning, as Ian’s heel was still quite sore from the big walk about Uluru the previous day.  The rest of us all did the 2.5 km walk to the Karu Lookout, which was a grade 3 walk.  It was a pretty difficult walk as it was mostly uphill on loose stone.  I am pretty proud of myself that I managed it, but I was pleased to get back to the shelter shed for morning tea (or should I say an early lunch).  The views from the lookout were quite stunning.   
Steve sets off for his "Valley of the Winds" trek..
The Olgas are very different to Uluru - a conglomerate of rocks
Kathy at the Olgas
Amazing scenery

We noticed a real difference between Uluru and Kata Tjuta, where Uluru seemed to have it’s sedimentary lines running downwards, at Kata Tjuta, the lines ran around the rock, or at least angled around the rock.  Where Uluru was one large rock.  Kata Tjuta had a lot of smaller rocks all around it, and there were sections of rock where you could see that smaller rocks made up the large rocks also.    There was also quite a bit of vegetation growing on the rocks; this is something that was not as evident at Uluru.  
The walk that Steve did...
We finished our walk, quite some time before Steve finished his.  His walk was meant to take four hours, but in the end he completed it in just under three hours. 
Heading out on the "Valley of the Winds" wall

  We all had a cup of tea whilst waiting for Steve, but in the end, the others were keen to go home.  I was happy to wait for Steve to come back down.  He arrived back at the meeting point only about 10-15 minutes after the others left for home.

He really enjoyed the walk, took lots of video’s to share it with us, and was keen to do one last walk before we headed home.  So we left this carpark and headed around to the carpark near the Walpa Gorge Walk.   

 I tossed up whether I should attempt this walk, but in the end once I saw how long the walk up to the entrance of the Gorge was I changed my mind.  My hip was still very sore from the climb this morning.  In hindsight,  we should have ditched the early morning walk to and done this one instead.  It was nowhere near as rough or as high, and it had a waterhole and beautiful ferns in the gorge.  This walk was a 2.6km walk and the suggested time for the walk was an hour.  Steve made it in and out in about 50 minutes.  

Once again we ran into the Harlequin Man, we have run into him every day of our stay here, and every day he is traipsing through the desert with large camera under his arm.  He is still wearing the same clothes and Barb and I were taking turns to photograph him. 
Steve loves these walks and would be happy to do everyone of them, I wish I could, but my arthritis and hip don’t always agree with my head.  I am still trying to do a little walk each day though.
We arrived back at the caravan around 4pm and had a cuppa with Ian and Kathy, and then us girls headed off for showers.  John and Barb weren’t home when we got home, they had gone back out to the cultural centre at Uluru to pick up some special herbal cream that seemed to be helping Barb with the pain.  She even bought me a little jar.    We were home tonight, no going out, it was nice just to stay put and relax.  Again, as the evenings are cook, we usually retreat to our own vans around 9pm.  Steve packed up what he could with the van as we had a very early start in the morning.  Our last night at Yalara, tomorrow we are off to King’s Canyon.


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