Kata Tjuta - Many Heads


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August 27th 2013
Published: September 1st 2013
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You must think, we get some kind of perverted pleasure, on showing you the temperature of just how hot it is when we have to take photographs. Oh and yes we are officially still in winter.
Tuesday 27 August



Kata Tjuta - Many Heads



Today we are up reasonably early as we plan to head over to Kata Tjuta, it is approximately 50k's from where we are camped at Yulara, we had wondered if to do this on the way out as we would be passing "the front door" so to speak when we head to the WA border. However the day we plan to leave, our parks passes will have expired so we would not be entitled to access any of the park areas.



I have made our lunch, we have plenty of drinking water on board and off we set toward the kiosk where we show our passes and head toward Uluru before turning off to the right for the Kata Tjuta's.



Kata Tjuta is a Pitjantjatjara word and means "Many Heads". The traditional aboriginal owners are the Anangu. The Kata Tjuta's are composed of conglomorate (I think similar to the formation of the Bungle Bungle's) consisting of various types of rock that include granite and basalt cemented in sandstone. There are 36 domes covering an area of 21.68 km2. (Thanks Wikipedia)
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Looking up from the base to the top, just how red this rock is.



We are in amongst some pretty impressive scenery, not just the rocks, but the beautiful wild flowers in amongst the green scrub spread across the red dunes, it really is striking landscape. A lookout comes up on the right hand side so we stop to take a walk up to it and find a purpose built shelter, I think it is also a viewing area for sunrise, there seem to be plenty of seats here, so imagine it pulls quite a crowd.



A woman cycles past us on her way back to the car park, Andy commented on how far she must be cycling and she said she was just cycling back to Yulara and will then get on a coach, goodness knows how far she had cycled already, we are miles from anywhere!



Driving up to Kata Tjuta there are a couple of choices, we choose to do the Walpa Gorge walk first, the day is already heating up, it is expected to be 33 degrees today. The car park is not too busy here, we set off as usual with camelbaks and camera's.



A few people are
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On the Walpa trail, what a gorgeous walk in.
already coming out of the walk here, nobody seemed to follow us in, eventually we see the last person coming out and he said to us that we would be on our own at the end and it would be very tranquil.



We walked up into the gorge, it was not a difficult walk, but by now it is quite hot, you have to watch your footing on the track, though it is clearly marked, they prefer you not to walk off the marked track. Getting into the shade of the gorge was bliss, it was lovely and refreshing to feel the cool air wash over you and such a welcome relief.



The Walpa walk is only a 2.6km return, the scenery is breathtaking, very green with all sorts of vegetation growing in the gorge, eventually you can go no further and a platform with some seating areas allow you to sit and enjoy the tranquil surrounds, we watch and listen, you can hear birds tweeting and playing around, we were not lucky enough to see Echidna's, after a while we set about making our return, on the way out we see a few
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At the end of the trail, these sits where we sat in silence and listened, to the wind.
more people on their way in.



We head off to the picnic area where we have our lunch, a wildcat is sat near one of the covered picnic benches, no doubt clearing up some food left by tourists, it soon scarpers when it sees us coming. By the time we ate our lunch, the temperature on the day had increased further, the temperature was showing 34 degrees, just 2 degrees off the mark before they close the Valley of the Winds Walk.



As much as we both wanted to do the valley of the winds walk, it was just too hot for us, there was no nice cool breeze today, we both felt tired, we would have to leave that on the list for another time. It is a 7.4k walk, classified as difficult and would take about 4 hours, so best done early morning I think.



On the way back to camp we top up our tanks with diesel so we don't have to worry in the morning and back at camp we rest and then make some preparations for our onward journey. A few more campers have appeared but
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A small pool of water, in amongst all this rock
again still nowhere near as busy as I anticipated that it should be, though there seems to be a high number of Britz camper vans in here with a large French contingent.



The sun slides down behind us, I see a scurry of people dash for one of the high dunes in behind camp to get a glimpse of Uluru at sunset.



After dinner I pack away as much as I can and tidy up so that there is little to do in the morning. We are both excited about the morning and the next part of our adventure taking us across the Great Central Road.



Until tomorrow.


Additional photos below
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The black lines show where run runs down, we assumed the black is caused by pollution within the rain
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On the Walpa trail, what a gorgeous walk in.
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Walpa Gorge
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We love these shady places to get out of the sun, man it was hot again today.


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