Monday, June 23, 2014

Get Ready for ALL the Landscape Pictures

D and I went for a walk! 

But not just any walk. A biiiiiiiig, long walk, called the Larapinta Trail, through mostly national park in Central Australia. 223 kilometres of arid, rocky, mountains, spinifex (which is basically yucca crossed with grass), and wildflowers.

We flew into Alice Springs, and were promptly surprised by how much farther north than Sydney and Perth it is. We were also shocked by how green it was; thanks to some rain the month before, the land was relatively lush. 

A basic map of the trail, with Alice Springs over on the right-hand side.
D and his GrownUpFriend (henceforth, Gof) have done other big hikes in Australia, but their friendship began with a dream to walk Larapinta end-to-end, and they were very excited to finally put their plans into action. D and Gof's friend Englishman also joined us for the entire hike, so we had a core group of four people. Englishman is now an Australian citizen, but he still has his very northern-nearly-scottish accent, which we constantly mocked, because it makes complaining sound hilarious.

For the first week of the hike, two of Gof's friends also joined us: The Colonel, and the SuperAussie. The Colonel was a bulldog of a guy, gruff and growly in speech, but kind in all his actions. The SuperAussie managed to dress like a Foster's ad for the whole hike; he didn't even bring pants! Dude wore only shorts, even though it was friggin cold. 

Our group at Redbank Gorge: The Colonel, The SuperAussie, me, D, The Englishman, and the GrownUpFriend.
D climbed up the cliff to take this picture.

We spent our first night near Redbank Gorge, where we saw our first dingo! On the trail, hikers are advised to keep everything, including all their food, inside their tents, so that dingoes don't steal it; they'll even take boots, apparently. It felt very strange to keep food in our tent, considering that's the very last thing you'd want to do in bear country. 

Our first night!
More to come....

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