So, as you have guessed from Matt’s last post we headed from zircon fossicking at Mudtank pretty much straight to Uluru. We left mudtank just as the weather started to turn very cold, very windy and a bit showery. We had a quick stop in to check out the campground at Gemtree which looked really nice and the kids enjoyed having a wonder through the gem shop there and seeing some of the lovely jewellry that can be made from the rocks around the Harts Range area – we are looking forward to seeing what the ones we have found will look like all cut and polished by Grunda!!
From there we hit the end of the Plenty Highway – hooray! We had to get a photo of us crossing the ‘Tropic of Capricorn’ line but found it very tricky to explain this invisible line down the middle of Australia to the kids!
Next we hit Alice Springs for a quick overnight stop as we needed to do a big grocery shop, fill up our gas bottle, do three loads of washing and have a much needed hot shower! We were really surprised by how scenic the drive in to Alice Springs was – really beautiful and not dry and desserty like we expected! We stayed at the Heavitree Caravan Park which was pretty cheap ($27 for a site for the night) and it was ok, but very busy and a bit dirty in the amenities etc. A note for Alice Springs is that you need to pay 50cents to use the public toilets – just something we weren’t expecting! We are planning on coming back through Alice Springs in a couple of weeks so will do some of the touristy stuff then!
And then it was on to Uluru – a place we were all looking forward to visiting on this trip! We had a quick toilet and coffee stop at Stuart’s Well which looks like a nice place to camp and checked out the emu’s and camels there.
Two hours later we stopped for lunch (its about a four hour drive from Alice Springs to Uluru) on the side of the road and I will never forget overhearing Toby say to Jack when he hopped out of the car and started to climb up a sand dune to have a look, ‘Jacko, its soooooo tiny!!’ in such a hugely disappointed voice! He thought we were at Uluru and the sand dune was it! Hehehehehehe – so funny had us all laughing for ages and Tobes of course was cranky at being laughed at!
Our next stop was Mt Connor (Jack had to send a photo to his mate Connor!) which often gets mistaken for Uluru – it is huge in its own right! We crossed over there road here and climbed a very red sand dune to discover a big salt lake on the other side! Amazing! The kids loved the novelty of the red sand!
Then Uluru came into sight and it just got bigger and bigger the closer we got!
We camped at the campground at Yulara which is the resort township about 20km’s from the rock. It was a nice campground with great amenities but obviously very busy with lots of tourists. It was freezing during our time there – I even had to scrape the ice of the windscreen at 7.30am one morning before heading out to the rock – brrrrrr! Anyway – we had a brilliant four nights camping here exploring Uluru and Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) – I will get some photos and a post on those next – sooooo many beautiful photos from our time there so very hard to choose some to share!