Uluru, King's Canyon and snuggling snakes!

Trip Start Nov 06, 2006
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Trip End Dec 10, 2010


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Sunday, August 12, 2007

We arrived at Alice Springs airport and were picked up by the hostel we were staying at, Annie's Place. That evening we went into the centre of town for a bit of dinner at Bojangles and were transported back in time the moment we walked through the swinging saloon doors. The decor was cheesy but really well done and the food was good. After the grub we headed back to the hostel to catch up on some sleep badly needed after our Darwin, Litchfield and Kakadu expeditions!

The following morning we picked up our little camper from Britz and set off on the road to King's Canyon. We started off at about 11am, stopping several times along the way to take photos of the amazing scenery and animals. We were very lucky to stumble upon a thorny devil lizard on the Stuart Highway and pulled in to try and move him to the edge for fear he'd be flattened by a car or the road train we'd passed out earlier if they didn't see him. After tapping his tail a few times he reluctantly strolled to the edge of the highway and then posed for a few snaps! We arrived in Erdlunda and topped up with fuel and tea before setting off again.

Just before sunset we landed at King's Canyon campsite and pulled into our site just in time for a visit from the dingoes! We were at the back of the campsite and got a spectacular view of the canyon at sunset before settling down to a few beers with our new neighbours, a really friendly Aussie couple from Brisbane who were travelling around Australia in their camper. The next morning we were up early and prepared for the 6 kilometer trek around the rim of King's Canyon. We filled up our water bottles and set off doing the King's Creek trek first along the canyon floor. After that we started with the steep incline up to the rim and trekked along the rim til we reached the short descent to the Garden of Eden. This place was like a little paradise on earth and although we had great intentions of having a swim in the crystal clear water hole, the water was a little bit too icy for us so we passed! After completing the trek we set off on the 300km drive to Yulara tourist park at Ayers Rock and got there just in time for sunset. It was more beautiful than we'd imagined and every photo we took was different. We headed back to the campsite to barbeque our dinner, sat outside our camper and watched the dingoes chance their arms with people's unattended food!!

We were up early the next morning to catch Uluru at sunrise which was even more spectacular than sunset, it looked like it was on fire. Then we drove out to Kata Tjuta or the Olgas and trekked along the Valley of the winds walk to a lookout for a stunning view of the rocks. Afterwards we drove to Ayers rock again one for last visit before going back to the campsite for another bbq before the dingoes came out to play!

The following morning we set off on the 465km drive back to Alice Springs to relax before flying back to Melbourne the following day. After arriving in Alice Springs in the afternoon we went to see the reptile centre where we got up close and personal with the reptiles there. We were introduced to lizards and snakes and even got cuddles from a 12 foot python called Olive and her little sister Cleo. They were very affectionate and real sweethearts, all they wanted to do was play and cuddle! We got a kiss from a blue-tongued lizard who turned out to be actually 'tasting' us to see if we were edible, mmmmm. After driving up to Anzac Hill for sunset over the city and the McDonnell Ranges we went back to the campsite and cracked open a bottle of wine for our last night of the holidays before returning to work in Melbourne. The next morning it was up early with a flying visit to the baby kangaroo Rescue Centre where we babysat and held the babies for about an hour before going to the airport to catch our flight. The rescue centre was set up by a man who literally rescues the babies from their mothers who've been hit and killed by cars and trucks on the surrounding roads. His Rescue Centre is commendable and all babies are rehabilitated, fed and cared for until they're strong enough to go back into the wild again.

After dragging ourselves away from the baby kangaroos we did a quick tour of the Royal Flying Doctor Service centre and learned about their history, how it got started and and how it operates today.

When we arrived at Alice Springs airport we had good intentions of finishing off our crisps, dips and couple of beers we had left over before boarding the plane. Alas this was not to be because when the bag of goodies was balanced on our bags on the trolley, Steve unknowingly moved the trolley towards the desk thinking I was still holding the bag and, smash, it fell on the floor and beer went spilling out across the only pathway between the queue behind us and the check-in desks. Well, embarrassment quickly followed and the check-in guy made a joke about drink and the Irish which we didn't really hear through our very red ears!! He also politely informed us not to worry that there was a bar in departures to drown our sorrows......Back to the grindstone now for a few more months......
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