Letho's Blog

MacDonnell Ranges / Alice Springs – Simpsons Gap and Ormiston Gorge

by on Dez.10, 2010, under The Outback

Dec 13, 2010

After multiple days of trying to repair our car myself, exchanging parts here and there and finally getting some professional advice (at no charge – but we returned with a few cold beers, thanks again to Marc from Alice Auto Repairs!) we found that after having spent 500$ altogether on parts and due to consequential damage the cause of all our problems were simply worn breaker points. We got a set of new breaker points and a condenser in the last minute before all shops closed down for the weekend, and Marc again was kind enough to explain in detail how to assemble and adjust them. We did, and voila! After 4 weeks of trouble, actually since Adelaide, only 17$ were all that was needed to let the car start and run smooth as ever. Phew .. and by now we had a new rear muffler, a new battery, a new distributor cap including a new rotor, a new lead coil and a new air filter as well. However – our LandCruiser had still brought us all the way through the Outback up here. Bravo, LandCruiser! 😉

As a result of breaking my fingers multiple times and swearing at the car while fixing it I unfortunately developed symptoms of a heatstroke. Maybe the sun had to do with it as well. 😉 Therefore, we stayed another day in Alice Springs and rested. But on Dec 13, 2010, we were all set for  a glorious return into the West MacDonnells…

Our first stop after leaving Alice Springs was Simpsons Gap which is pretty close to the town. Again, this gorge differed completely in appearance from the gorges we had been to before. But similarly there was plenty of water directly in the middle of the gap.

To get through the gap, there is only one way: through the water.

No swimming here, however. So we just put our shoes off and tipped our toes into the water.

After Simpsons Gap we headed back to Ormiston Gorge, the gorge closest to Glen Helen Gorge and quite a few kilometers away. We took a short detour for a walk to see some genuine Ghost Gum trees. And we found some really beautiful, huge trees..

Beautiful Ghost Gum tree

Beautiful Ghost Gum tree

Ormiston Gorge again surprised us, this time with its sheer size. It’s a really massive gorge and consists of multiple layers of quartzite rocks, once kilometers apart, that were shifted upon each other due to earth movements.

We went for the Ghost Gum Walk up the rim, into the gorge and back and were warned beforehand about it being steep and moderately difficult, involving climbing. What we didn’t expect was that because of all the recent rainfalls it also included some serious swimming.

It was a delightful experience, though. Carrying Inka’s shiny new Canon camera I made several successful attempts at circus-like, artistic movements in order to not throw the thing into the water after slipping over some slimy rocks  .. 🙂

See the marvellous view yourself:

Somewhere along the way we noticed how our sunburns (from Glen Helen Gorge) had developed over the last few days. Not for the better, I’m afraid .. actually those are blisters, not water drops.

It was already late in the afternoon by now. A campground close to the Ormiston Gorge was the best choice to stay overnight, so we made camp there – a great night out in the MacDonnell Ranges. 🙂


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