Friday, May 3, 2013

The Red Centre










I realise a 3,000 km road trip all the way to the Red Centre without visiting Uluru is a bit like going to Paris without visiting the Eiffel Tower but we already visited Uluru and did all the big 'touristy' things on our trip around the country a year ago. Did you know it is an extra 10 hour round trip from Alice Springs? I asked the Kids whether they fancied a side trip to Uluru and I just about had a mutiny on my hands. Even well-travelled Kids have their limits! If you are interested though you can read my previous Posts about Uluru, the largest Rock in the World, here, The Kings Canyon here and the beautiful colours of the Red Centre here.

Rather than playing tourist, this trip was about relaxing and enjoying the local surrounds and spending time with my In-Law's who live in Alice Springs. I had a break from my camera too so all of the photos above were taken on my iPhone and have done the rounds on Intsagram already (apologies for the that!). We visited some local gorges and waterholes and the Aboriginal Ochre Cliffs are something I hadn't seen before. The red, yellow and brown Ochre are clearly visible in the Cliffs and are used by the Aboriginals in their traditional ceremonies, painting and cosmetics. The Kids spent hours every day exploring the hill beside their Grandparents's home. On the final night I climbed the top of the hill with them and was blown away at the view of the MacDonnell Ranges in the background.

The highlight for me was the Full Moon mountain bike ride through the West Macdonnell Ranges. My Father-In-Law is a keen Mountain Bike rider and for 14 years I have been hearing about his Full Moon bike rides through the West McDonnell Ranges. Our trip happened to coincide with a Full Moon on Anzac Day and so The Pianoman and I decided to join him and my Mother-In-Law on the infamous ride. We managed to get a couple of lovely girls from the boarding house at the School where my In-Law's works to look after the Kids and at 7pm, the four of us were dropped off at Simpson's Gap and were to make the 30km journey home. It was the most amazing experience. The conditions were perfect and it was incredibly light and quiet and serene. Just breathtaking and definitely something for the Bucket List if you happen to be in Alice Springs on a Full Moon. I learnt something though - either 30km is a very long way or I am very unfit -  a sore backside proving that maybe both are correct. Upon return it was a toss up as to whether a nice drop of Red or a bath of Epson Salts would be the more beneficial remedy. Unsurprisingly, I opted for the former.

We are now down on The Great Ocean Road and nearing the end of our trip. The long drives are all behind us now and it will be nice to spend the last few days in the one spot. I must say I had hoped to check in a lot more often than once a week given there was so much time in the car, however there is no reception outside the petrol stations on the road to and from Alice Springs and none underground in Coober Pedy so it has been tricky. So I apologise for the radio silence from my side and I am looking forward to getting home and catching up on all your news.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend!

Mel xxxx





30 comments :

  1. Wow..That is quite the road trip! Love your photos, reminds of my time at Uluru a few years back. And how cool that you spotted that thorny devil!

    PS: I'm hosting a Suigo hair pack giveaway; hope you enter: http://www.underlockandkeyblog.com/2013/05/suigo-hair-review-and-giveaway.html

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  2. great images. Really makes me want to visit and lie out over a rock like a lizard!

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  3. Beautiful photos. How lucky are your little ones to have such an amazing adventure. Enjoy The Great Ocean Road.

    www.twinsplusonemumma.com

    x

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  4. Fantastic pictures. I'd love to do what you are doing. How are the roads. Is a normal non-4 wheel drive okay for most of it?
    That baby is looking very bonny indeed!

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    1. Yes, the road is probably one of the best in Australia as it needs to cater for the large Road Trains. Its long, straight and flat the whole way from Port Augusta in the South to Alice Springs. Not sure about the road from Qld across to Coober Pedy though - have a feeling the Oodnadatta Track is a 4wd only?

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  5. Now thats a road trip! Great pics. I especially love the last one xo

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  6. What a fabulous trip Mel.....just a tad different from what we are looking out the window at here in France! Enjoy and safe travels home to Hobart....I see that they've had snow on Mt Wellington, already! Rx

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  7. Great pictures. I love how you let me see your part of the world it is beautiful.

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  8. Wow. Feeling inspired to organise an adventure!

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  9. Amazing photos ... the landscape is truly stunning ... Bee xx

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  10. Stunning photos. Very envious.

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  11. Oh wow! Such an incredible country you live in :)

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  12. wow! such an amazing place, that lizard looks like something prehistoric!
    the bike ride sounds lovely (30km is definitely a long way!)
    http://ahandfulofhope.blogspot.co.uk/

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  13. Looks like an amazing place wonderful photos :)

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  14. Such beautiful pictures! And your bike ride sounds like it was amazing. I have a question for you though. My understanding of Australia is it has more poisonous snakes than anywhere on the planet. Did you have to worry about this when your kids played outside on the hill near your in-laws? Sorry if this is a silly question, and perhaps I am the victim of stereotyping a place. But I am also very, very paranoid of snakes. Even the non-poisonous varieties.

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    1. Not a silly question at all, we've got all the scary deadly stuff down here - snakes, spiders, sharks, crocodiles. Snakes are around but you would be very unlucky to be bitten by one as they generally shy and keep to themselves and will move away if they sense someone coming. They are more active in the Summer months so even though it was hot in Alice Springs we weren't really worried and didn't see any. They would generally only attack if you threatened them by cornering or stepping on them and that is why you stick to the paths so you can see them. The Kids know to keep an eye out for them in the bush and to keep out of long grass in Summer. We saw 5 snakes at our home last Summer, bit too close for comfort! But in Tasmania we only have 3 types of snakes and all have the same antivenin so, in a worst case scenario, I'm confident things would be OK if we got to hospital! Hope that helps (probably not very reassuring!) but it's really not as big a deal, probably same as me being worried about being eaten by a bear on a hike in Canada :-)

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    2. Thanks for the explanation. Your bear analogy is a good one. I don't give them a second thought when I go out walking on the trail near my home, even though they often use the same path as me. And there is no antivenin for being eaten by one. :-)

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  15. Again, incredible pictures - enjoy the rest of your trip!

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  16. wow mel!! this trip looks and sounds fantastic! i would love to visit someday, it all looks incredibly beautiful, so vast and serene. that is the coolest thing you did, a moonlight mountain bike ride! i would love LOVE to do that. we've done midnight full moon hikes but a bike ride, wow. enjoy your safari back home!

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  17. oh! what is that lizard? SO cool! LOVE the reflections too, amazing!

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    1. It's a Thorny Devil, cute isn't he :-)

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  18. Breathtaking, absolutely fantastic - thanks for sharing, waiting to hear about the rest of the trip!

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  19. Gorgeous pics Mel, the colours are just glorious and a real thorny devil, you must be out in the real desert. mel x

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  20. Looks fabulous and the bike ride is something I have never heard of but sounds cool!
    I love our vast country in all it's guises x

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  21. Hi Mel, you all seem to be thriving in that red centre and look well rested and refreshed. I love the pic of you and the baby too!

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  22. Fabulous photos - what an amazing trip you guys are having! :)

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  23. Wow I have never seen anything like it! The red colour and the lizard are amazing!

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  24. Looks like the perfect trip Mel. Biking at night in the moonlight is something I have never heard of before, but I am sure it would be very tranquil. Happy Sunday! oxxx

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  25. Ah Mel, it's so lovely to hear from you and catch up on your news. Wow, those photos!! That sky is so blue. I can't believe Uluru is really a 10 hour round trip from Alice Springs...I thought it was IN Alice Springs. And 30 km is a long way on a bike. I would have keeled over half way! xx

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  26. WOWZERS! They are all stunning photos, amazing that they were taken on the iPhone, clever little thing it is. That lizard is so cool, you just don't see those type of critters in the city. Such a fabulous trip Mel, love the one of you and bubby, beautiful! xo

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