An easy morning stretched out in front of us with *only* a 2.5 hour drive to Yulara and Uluru. I thought Mt Conner was pretty spectacular of its own accord, and reminded me of photographs of Utah, the mesa tabletop familiar from climbing photos.
The kids were a bit over things today, they were both grumpy from having a falling out in the morning and I was a little exasperated. When they get on well, they are great together, but man when they argue, it’s painful. Who would have thought boys were so manipulative and provocative towards each other?? Does my head in.
The 'rock' appeared around a bend and a little smile came over my face. To be honest, Uluru was not a major bucket list item for me. The general area, I have always wanted to visit, but I have had other fish to fry in the past. The massive tourism I knew would be here, had turned me off a little. But one can’t help but smile when you see it appear. It is quite amazing.
The campground at Ayers Rock Resort is expensive for what it is, but there are plenty of facilities and there is nowhere else to stay cheaply, unless you want a crazy long drive to Uluru and Kata Tjuta (you can stay at Curtin Springs). So at $48 per night for me and the two boys, that’s just what it has to be.
We set up camp with ease as we have quite a system now, and headed down to the sunset viewing area to watch Uluru. The day was cloudy and I got a few shots, but it didn’t look like the sun was going to peek out of the clouds any time soon and show us that famed red glow over the Rock.
We drove down to the Mala walk and went for a wander along the easy path, Charlie reading aloud the story as we went. That was his ‘school’ for the day, learning about the Aboriginal stories behind specific areas. There were very few people on the Mala walk at this time of day; everyone was at the sunset viewing areas of course. So it was fantastic - still, quiet, peaceful. We drank in the fading light, walking toward the waterhole at the end of the walk. Only two other people were at the waterhole with us, a sacred site, and it was profoundly quiet. As we left the waterhole, the sun burst out of the clouds and suddenly lit up the rock behind us, as if massive stage lights flooded in. Suddenly we saw the magic, and the boys and I were spellbound at this crazy light surrounding us. It was pure bliss. To share it with only a few other people was magnificent. Highly recommended - do this at sunset instead (or on another night!)
The light disappeared back behind the clouds as quickly as it came and as we walked away from the rock back to the car, we watched the beautiful clouds, pink and orange in the sunset. Cloudy days have their advantages here.
Back at the campground I refused to pay for any overpriced meals at the hotel, so we cooked spag bol from scratch in the camp kitchen, hauling both my gas stoves to cook up possibly one of the best meals on the road I have ever cooked. Nom nom nom.