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Uluru and the Red Centre, Northern Territory, Australia - 8th-10th October 2004

Following Melbourne, and a day in Sydney, it's off to the middle of the desert for a scope at Uluru (formerly known as Ayer's Rock) and a stay at the Ayer's Rock Resort backpack digs - the Outback Pioneer. The whole gig was a bit of a last-minute thing: Nosher was in Australia primarily for work, but tacked a few days extra on the end for hols. His mate in Sydney - Trotsky - had people around until Tuesday, so it required finding something else to do for a few days. A quick trip to the Flight Centre on Circular Quay in Sydney led to a trip to the Red Centre, especially after it was discovered that the resort at Ayer's Rock had dorms and wasn't too expensive. The flight was fairly empty too, so it gave a chance to bagsy the "prize seat" (in cattle-class at least) which was the emergency door row. As it turned out, the dorms and general accommodation was excellent (the bus transfer included Mr. Comedy MC, who'd obviously been through those particular jokes at least a million times :-), and the whole last-minuteness added to the fun. There was something really special about sitting in the outback in the dark surrounded by nothing but the occasional chirping of the cicadas, looking at an alien star field(*) in a perfectly dark sky. It even led to a spontaneous, but somehow required, drawing in the red sand with a stick in an Aboriginal style...

next album: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia - 10th-13th October 2004
previous album: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia - 5th-6th October 2004

2004 The first close-up view of the desert: the path leading up from the dorms to one of the Uluru lookouts

The first close-up view of the desert: the path leading up from the dorms to one of the Uluru lookouts

2004 A self-timer shot of Nosher's gnarly legs

A self-timer shot of Nosher's gnarly legs

2004

2004 After hiring a car and driving around: the first close-up of the rock itself

After hiring a car and driving around: the first close-up of the rock itself

2004

2004 The vendah outside Nosher's dorm room

The vendah outside Nosher's dorm room

2004 Nosher in the sunset

Nosher in the sunset

2004 A sunset over Kata Tjuta

A sunset over Kata Tjuta

2004

2004 A starry sky over the 'posh' end of the Ayer's Rock Resort

A starry sky over the 'posh' end of the Ayer's Rock Resort

2004 On the open road: miles of road with almost no traffic to be seen anywhere

On the open road: miles of road with almost no traffic to be seen anywhere

2004

2004

2004 Nosher's hired car

Nosher's hired car

2004 Kata Tjuta in the background (also known as The Olgas). Kata Tjuta means 'many heads' in the local Aboriginal language

Kata Tjuta in the background (also known as The Olgas). Kata Tjuta means 'many heads' in the local Aboriginal language

2004

2004

2004

2004 The Docker River Road. 200 metres of tarmac rapidly gives way to 800 kilometres of dirt road

The Docker River Road. 200 metres of tarmac rapidly gives way to 800 kilometres of dirt road

2004 A somewhat stark warning that there's no petrol for 815 kilometres (509 miles)!

A somewhat stark warning that there's no petrol for 815 kilometres (509 miles)!

2004 A quality 'cliché' sign. There were no roos to be seen, so one wonders whether the sign was there for the benefit of tourists...

A quality 'cliché' sign. There were no roos to be seen, so one wonders whether the sign was there for the benefit of tourists...

2004 The well-equipped resident's kitchens at the Outback Pioneer hostel

The well-equipped resident's kitchens at the Outback Pioneer hostel

2004 Uluru

Uluru

2004

2004

2004

2004

2004

2004 Martika, a fellow Resortee (on the camp site) wanders off. Nosher had bumped into her lying on the ground, exhausted

Martika, a fellow Resortee (on the camp site) wanders off. Nosher had bumped into her lying on the ground, exhausted

2004 A stop-off near the A<u>n</u>angu Women's sacred Woma site: it was <i>sooo</i> quiet here, save for the buzz of flies, but the occasional sounds were amplified strangely by the surrounding rocks

A stop-off near the Anangu Women's sacred Woma site: it was sooo quiet here, save for the buzz of flies, but the occasional sounds were amplified strangely by the surrounding rocks

2004

2004

2004

2004 Various photos of Uluru during the sunset

Various photos of Uluru during the sunset

2004 The colours of the rock in the dying sun become pretty intense

The colours of the rock in the dying sun become pretty intense

2004 ...from orange...

...from orange...

2004 ...through to purple. Shortly after the sun goes under the horizon, the rock lights up briefly

...through to purple. Shortly after the sun goes under the horizon, the rock lights up briefly

2004 Back at the dorm, whilst Nosher bangs on about the state of the world to one of the German guys sharing the dorm, a moth the size of a small bird, wanders around looking dazed

Back at the dorm, whilst Nosher bangs on about the state of the world to one of the German guys sharing the dorm, a moth the size of a small bird, wanders around looking dazed

2004 Nosher takes a helicopter ride around Uluru and Kata Tjuta

Nosher takes a helicopter ride around Uluru and Kata Tjuta

2004 The many heads of Kata Tjuta are more evident from the air

The many heads of Kata Tjuta are more evident from the air

2004

2004

2004 The pilot turns out to be an ex-Rozzer from Oxford, who'd fancied a bit of a change of scene...

The pilot turns out to be an ex-Rozzer from Oxford, who'd fancied a bit of a change of scene...

2004 Uluru from the air

Uluru from the air

2004

2004 The shadow of the helicopter passes over the strange mixture of red desert and spinifex vegetation (home of the famed Spinifex Hopping Mouse) below

The shadow of the helicopter passes over the strange mixture of red desert and spinifex vegetation (home of the famed Spinifex Hopping Mouse) below

2004

2004 The chopper heads off on another tour

The chopper heads off on another tour

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The first close-up view of the desert: the path leading up from the dorms to one of the Uluru lookouts

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