“I can see why people call this the heart of Australia,” resounded Isaac as Uluru loomed in the distance. Isaac in particular has surprised us both during our trip with his fascination and interest in all the new places we have visited. His curiosity and his inquisitive nature has given us a new perspective. He has made us marvell at things through the eyes of a child. Both Tom and I have had the pleasure of visiting Uluru before when we were both much younger and perhaps a little less receptive to just how amazing a place Uluru is. Neither of us remembered being as moved as we were on revisiting Uluru. There really is something special about this land, about this place that speaks to the heart. Let’s be honest – its a giant, red, rock in the middle of nowhere, and yet for some reason it draws upwards of 250 000 visitors a year from all over the world. Like Kings Canyon, Uluru humbled me and made me acutely aware of my humanity. There is a rich story being told and now we have become a part of that story. A story that will be told (God willing) for another 600 million years.
The kids were able to ‘back up’ the Kings Canyon Rim Walk with a ten kilometre ride the following day around ‘the rock’. Matisse has just mastered the art of riding with no training wheels, so her effort was awesome. Tobias wasn’t so keen. We got a few hundred metres in to the walk and I called it!! So unfortunately I was left to drive around the base while Tom walked. While we have had our challenges (be assured our trip has not been all sunshine and roses) the kids continue to exceed our expectations when it comes to their endurance and tenacity. They have been real little troopers.
One thing I have not gotten use to is the ‘red dirt’. This is the overflow campground – just red dirt!! I’m channelling my mother and reliving my childhood in Karratha. I have so much more appreciation for her. I don’t know how she managed!! I’ve given up trying to keep things clean. As Amelia said to me the other day, “You’re the only one that cares mum!”
Uluru is sacred to the Anangu people, the traditional owners of the land. Uluru, while originally sitting at the bottom of the sea, now stands about 348 metres high and in fact continues for a number of kilometres underground. Geologists estimate that it’s formation began around 550 million years ago.
Fun Fact – There are shrimps living in Uluru. After heavy rain, tadpole like shrimps hatch in temporary water holes and rock pools.