Sunday, 16 September 2018

Day 12–No Parts and Ormiston Gorge

The replacement bolts and shock absorbers for the trailer must be coming on the slow camel as they still haven’t arrived in Alice.  There seemed little point in wasting time waiting in Alice and we therefore decided to make a side trip to one of the local gorges.  Without the repairs to the trailer this was a risk, however we wouldn’t be leaving the bitumen and we would monitor our temporary repairs.
The MacDonnell Ranges are pierced by a number of gorges and some of these are very picturesque.  We decided to visit Ormiston Gorge approximately 135km west of Alice Springs.  I’d read there was a camping ground here along with toilets and a swimming hole.
Setting up camp
The roads in this area are mostly used by Grey Nomads, retired old people… like me Sad smile!  The campsite was actually more developed than I’d anticipated and included a cafe, which was staffed by a young European couple on an extended visitors visa.  The young woman told us her boyfriend did the cooking at the cafe whilst she cleaned the camping facilities.  She confessed to being a terrible cook!
Gas hotplates and BBQ’s
After establishing our campsite and paying our site fees ($20ea p/ni) we went exploring.
The first part of the walk took us up a hill and along a path to Ghost Tree Lookout.  You can see the lookout in the above photo.  It’s to the immediate right of the lone gumtree in the middle left of the photo.
IMG_2849Looking back to the cafe and camping ground
The trail winds it’s way around the side of the gorge
Looking back towards Ghost Tree Lookout
It gets very hot here during summer and the waterhole provides a good location to cool down.  However we’ve arrived at the end of winter and the water is just too cold for anyone other than the hardiest of souls

Ormiston Gorge Video <Filesize 3.5Mb>
There was plenty of wildlife around the area.IMG_2875
As you would expect; the native animals blend in with the environment.
We heard from another traveller that the nearby Glen Helen Gorge was even more attractive and went to have a look.
The following day we returned to Alice Springs where we discovered the slow and thirsty camel had arrived at the post office and delivered our replacement parts.  That afternoon Carlin fitted the replacement camber bolts.  Our wire and tape “fix” had lasted just over 2000km!  Unfortunately the wrong sized shock absorbers had been sent.  They were too long!  I phoned Perth to report the problem informing them we couldn’t wait in Alice any longer and requested they send the right shock absorbers to Broome; our next major stop.  We’d travelled 2000km over some rough roads without shock absorbers so we’d risk crossing the Tanami Desert without them.


Halfie said...

I thought you'd found a dinosaur until the next photo showed it looked more like a kangaroo!

Tom and Jan said...

If it was a dinosaur then there are millions of them here!