Nannette is leading a gem of a walk from Saturday, May 4th to Monday, May 6th to Umbatthera/Mt. Giles.
Please see Current Schedule updated 26th March under Bushwalks and Activities for details.
The walking schedule to the end of April has just been released.
Please check out the “BUSHWALKS & ACTIVITIES PROGRAM” to see and download the latest walks program.
The Tyuretye/West MacDonnell National Park was extensively burnt in the last couple of months.
Lightning strikes and a record dry, hot spell made for an incendiary combination. Much of the Larapinta Trail has been damaged. The beauty of place still remains, though.
Working bees over the next few weeks will work on clearing fallen debris and replacing burnt out signage. Luckily most of the debris is small trees, like mulga and other acacias, which were easy to lift off the trail.
There is much beauty, still, to appreciate, despite the destruction.
The fires seem to be patchy with many areas spared. The gullies, in particular, seem to have taken the brunt of the fires.
In the photo below, we are having lunch at Ghost Gum Flat, along section 6 of the Larapinta Trail.
We were sitting beneath a magnificent Fork-leafed Corkwood (Hakea divaricata, in latin and untyeye in Western Arrernte).
The fire has partly burnt some of the adjacent ghost gums (Corymbia aparrerinja, in latin and Ilwempe in Arrernte) but spared the corkwood, leaving a nice shady spot to relax under.
It was sad to see grand old trees – entire ecosystems – burnt and fallen and cliffs and hill-sides blackened and singed, but over millenia they must’ve burnt multiple times (maybe less intensely before buffel). They will survive and re-generate.
Mt Gillen, Alhekulyele, now signed as a walk with informal trail, easy to access and great views in every direction. Most of the trail is in good conditions but there are a few places with deep erosion gullies, and others with multiple trails walked over the same section of hillside.
Rain overnight and over the past 24 hours meant that flowers and ferns were coming to life.
Native orange also in bloom, with bees enjoying the pollen.
Home by midday, looking forward to next week’s walk
A small group enjoyed a beautiful day visiting Palm Valley. We completed all the marked tracks namely Arankia and Mpulunkinya Walks along Palm Valley, then Mpaara Walk and Kalarranga Lookout near the campground.
We had the pleasure of assisting a couple of Countrymen who we spotted by a vehicle by the side of the road. One fellow wanted a 2km ride to a broken down car from where he planned to siphon some fuel. The other fellow, Henry, needed a ride to his home at Sandhill Camp near Hermannsburg. Over 80km driving he told us so much: Conrad Ratara TO for Palm Valley is Henry’s Uncle while Henry is TO for Boggey Hole; Papunya team Yarumpi (honeyant in Luritja) won the football, Tjupi is the Arrernte term for honeyant; there are three Arreernte tribes: Western (Hermannsburg), Central (Alice Springs ) and Eastern (Santa Teresa). Hermannsburg is Lutheran, while Santa Teresa is Catholic. Palm Valley is a good address – you can buy alcohol if that is your address.
Hermannsburg and nearby Palm Valley had three days rain (compared with only one in Alice Springs) so there was a little water along the Valley.
We stopped off at Hermannsburg to buy Apple Strudel on the way home but too late, they close the cafe at 4pm. Hermannsburg Heritage site looks like a great place for an outing.
A wonderful walk to open our autumn walk program, from the Ochre Pits, through Pioneer Gorge, with shoes off for a knee-deep wade.
A couple of kilometres along Section 9 of the Larapinta Trail, which was quite busy at this time of year, including a walker who needed to continue blaring music from her mobile device even in the peace of the West MacDonnell Ranges.
Enjoying lunch in Inarlanga Pass, it was quite overcast.
Then along the Arrernte Trail, which has interpretative signage about the mulga and its resources.
Thanks Ken and Helen for leading such a wonderful walk.