Thursday, 1 August 2013

A Kangaroo-filled Run

Last week, Steven and I traveled to the heart of the Australian Outback: Uluru, The Olgas and King's Canyon (If you have no idea what these places are, think big red rocks and scrubby desert...and emus).

Our start off point was Alice Springs, a small town of around 20,000 people. The town exists basically to feed and house the tourist traffic that eventually trickles down to the big attractions of Uluru and King's Canyon about 4-6 hours down the highway.

As our B'nB hosts explained, Alice Springs is an overlooked attraction in and of itself! It's flanked by the MacDonnell Ranges, valleys and wildlife, and even pockets of rainforest in the middle of the outback. There are plenty of trails and walks around Alice Springs.

Our host recommended a short loop around the Telegraph Station park lands, which is both historic and incredibly Australian. The Telegraph Station is quite significant, as before it was constructed, the only way to communicate between Darwin up to the north and the rest of Australia down in the south was by messenger. HUMAN messenger! It would take weeks! The telegraph stations made communication happen within a day. However, the telegraph signal would die out over a couple hundred kilometers, so there are these historic telegraph stations basically spanning the entire outback.

Can you imagine being posted to a telegraph station in outback Australia? Desolate, isolated, oh, and kangaroo-filled!

I saw sooo many kangaroos on this run.

However, I felt like such a blundering monster through these beautiful, quiet morning trails, sliding up and down the rocky paths with my heavy footfalls, my liter of water sloshing around in my bottle, my heavy panting, etc. etc. I know I scared away so many more kangaroos than I saw because I saw one hopping away on the rocks with her joey in her mouth.

My stats:

Oh, and those "rivers" on the map above are actually all dry. They only fill up with sufficient rainfall, which may happen in 3 months, or 3 years. The desert is an amazing place!

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