Kings Canyon

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The Art of Aussie Hiking

We discovered the art of hiking in the Australian heat early on in our trip   

 Freezing four bottles of water in the campground kitchen and  setting off as early as we can get away.  The maggies beating the road crew to the wake up call this morning

We  share a camera, which Tony carries,  I tote the frozen water and snacks in my backpack, keeping me cool as well as providing hydration.  The water melts slowly so we have sips all along the trail and it's usually still cold when we finish, typically around noon 

Afternoons can be spent around the campground, sitting in the shade reading, in the pool or doing laundry

Setting off this day Tony captured three early risers ahead of me on the trail and two more on the ridge to the top right.   More than we saw at Kata Tjuta all morning

Watarrka National Park

6 km walk starts with a climb, known to the locals as heartbreak hill or heart attack hill, take you pick

Hiding in plain sight

The rock appears red but is actually white sandstone 'painted' red by iron rich dust and bound to the surface by a form of fungi which thrives on iron and silica

Through Pricilla's Crack

To The Lost City

"Just what Australia needs, A cock in a frock on a rock"

It seems everywhere we go in the Red Center, Pricilla got there before us

The scene above from Pricilla Queen Of The Desert was written to take place on top of Uluru.  Permission was denied, I'm surprised they had the temerity to ask

 

The North wall of the canyon soars 100 -150m above the creek to the plateau above

The Garden of Eden

We were on our way down and this is how we got there

Steep wooden steps lead to a bridge spanning the area just above the floor, overlooking  the water hole, 

 

Taking the detour we walked down and around to the floor of the gorge where the water table is higher than the floor creating a permanent serenely beautiful oasis.  The steep confining wall of the gorge  amplified the bird calls, it was glorious.   Millions of years in the making and serendipitously ours alone
 

 

It was a long hike back.  The temperature as we set off up Heartbreak Hill was 23 degrees when we left the canyon it was 35 degrees

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There were more flowers here than we had seen anywhere in the Outback.   They were all yellow, purple (sometimes both) and blue

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