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(8 stories)
  • Uluru (Ayers Rock): My first visit to the then 'Ayers Rock' was in 1978. The road in had been improved and tourist ... read story
  • Mount Wells: Tin was first discovered here in the Northern Territory in 1880. It was the largest producing tin mine ... read story
  • A day at the Mount: Iíve long argued that Mount Wilson, hectare for hectare, is home to Australiaís finest gardens. However,... read story
  • Kennett family burials: near the Eastern side of Gullungutta Hill (see Photo #6) across the Ottley creek is the presumed Burial place of ... read story
  • A Place for Reflection: I first visited this place in August 2008. I knew it as Secret Rocks, and that whet my ... read story
  • Port Mantle Hill.: This hill rises on my property south west of Merriwa. It is the highest point for some distance in every ... read story
  • Access: As at 19 March 2010, the bonzle map and narrative are not quite correct. The nearest sealed road ... read story
  • Mount Useful Creek: The catchment of the Mount Useful Creek is broadly banded by about 10kms of McEvoys Track to the west,... read story

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Uluru (Ayers Rock) (21 December 2010)

contributed by DerrickJessop
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Uluru / Ayers Rock Contemplating Uluru from a distance.

My first visit to the then 'Ayers Rock' was in 1978. The road in had been improved and tourist buses were the favoured means of travel. To see the rock rising from the plain in the distance was amazing, as it must have been also to William Gosse, who having left Alice Springs in April 1873 to cross the continent to Perth and enduring weeks of slogging across the waterless plan saw the monolith rising in the distance and more importantly finding water at its base.

Uluru / Ayers Rock As the sun rises the rock burns rich red while the Olgas fade to a purple haze.

Gosse named the rock Ayers Rock, not after the explorer John Ayers but Sir Henry Ayers, former Premier of South Australia. He was also the first white man to climb the rock, and may even have been the first man to do so as the Aborigines regarded the rock as sacred.

Uluru / Ayers Rock In 1978 there was no hindrance to climbing Ayers Rock.

On my visit there was no restriction to climbing the rock and it was a very popular thing to do, despite the danger of sliding off if one strayed from the narrow marked path or left the single link chain that was necessary to negotiate the steep sections.

Uluru / Ayers Rock At the Eastern end strange shaped rocks and boulders litter the surface.

On my next visit in 1989 I was able to explore the Eastern end of the rock that extends far beyond the register cairn. Here the surface of the rock is very different. It is rough, with scattered rocks and boulders and deep crevasses in which shrubs and bushes grow.

Uluru / Ayers Rock The queue to register having climbed to the top.

I climbed just before dawn and saw the rising sun tip the Olgas (Kata Tjuta) in the distrance, and the plains take on the impression of an endless sea. As thesun rose the whole tenor of the landscape changed and the rock took on its typical burnished red glow.

It was a sobering thought that this marvelous change take place every morning and has done for millenia.

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