I took an opportunity to visit Alice Springs and stay with friends last week. It was a first for me to experience the Northern Territory & I was not disappointed. My stay coincided with the annual Alice Show which had all the usual displays of animals, sideshow alley and excited children. Set in a dusty paddock against the outback colours one associates with the centre of Australia.
The colours of the show was just an entree for what I was about to experience on a road trip 150km out of town the next day. We set off to visit Standley Chasm, Ormiston Gorge and Glen Helen.
Getting to Standley Chasm around midday was our objective as this is when the sun creeps into the chasm and illuminates the walls and intensifies the oranges, reds against the white trunks of the Ghost Gums.
Ormiston Gorge was another 40 km or so from Standley Chasm and is part of the West Macdonnell ranges. The road trip provided some stunning views of the ranges.
Being peak season, we did not have the tourist spots to ourselves, but it was nonetheless overwhelming and inspiring to be walking through this ancient landscape.
I thought it was amusing that in the entire time I was in the Northern Territory, I did not see one cloud, nor any wildlife except for the occasional bird. I expected to see kangaroos or at least the sad result of collisions with animals on the long stretches of road.
The sun going down in the N.T always showed colours off in their most subtle and beautiful ways.
I hope to return to the Northern Territory soon and visit Uluru and other wonders this expansive territory has to offer. Thanks to my friends John Carson and Des O'brien for their hospitality and their knowledge of the area.