All posts by Swaggiescapes

Zebra Rock Mine & Lake Argyle

Located on the border of Northern Territory and Western Australia, Zebra Rock Mine is the only one of its kind in the world. The striking zebra rock fascinates researchers and tourists alike. While there, we went on wetland safaris to Lake Argyle, sought out the local Gouldian Finches, spent time fossicking in the nearby creekbed and ate locally caught silver cobbler.

Zebra rock

Zebra rock at mine

Zebra rock

Zebra rock polished

Lake Argyle sunset tour of wetlands

Lake Argyle

Lake Argyle Pelican

Lake Argyle birds in tree

Sea Eagle Lake Argyle

Fresh water crocs

Sunset Lake Argyle

Full mooon over Lake Argyle

Gouldian and other finches Gouldian finches and others at creek

 

 

 

Darwin, Berry Springs, Litchfield National Park, Leliyn (Edith Falls)

Our final leg of the Northern Territory  took us south from Darwin to Berry Springs, Litchfield National Park and Leliyn, Nitmiluk. In this land the horizons were dotted with columns of smoke from Wurrgeng (cold weather) burning, the haunting screams of curlew pierced the nights, and we found relief from the heat in specially designated waterholes. At Katherine we headed west and passed the beautiful Gregory National Park and Victoria River.

Darwin from East Point

Darwin evening from East Point

The Lake, Berry Springs

The Lakes Berry Springs

Ibis

Litchfield National Park: Magnetic, north-south pointing termite mounds (with cathedral mounds in background); Wangi Falls, View from top of Tolmer Falls, Savanna woodland, Florence Falls.

Termite mounds

Wangi Falls

View from top of Tolmer Falls

Savanna woodland

Florence Falls

Leliyn (Edith Falls)

Leliyn Edith Falls

Victoria River and Gregory National Park (Judbarra)

Victoria River-Gregory National Park

 

Northern Kakadu and Arnhem Land

Crossing the East Alligator River from Kakadu to Arnhem Land took us over Cahill’s Crossing and into an ancient rocky landscape with its floodplains and billabongs.  We visited the town of Oenpelli before making our way to the surrounding sandstone outcrops, aboriginal wall art and Inkiyu Billabong. The tidal river was up on our return journey where dozens of crocodiles were lining up to catch fish going over the crossing.  As we headed out of Kakadu, we stopped at the Mamukala Billabong.

Near Oenpelli, Arnhem Land

Oenpelli Arnhem Land

Oenpelli

Arnhem Land rock

Arnhem Land

Rock art sites

Aboriginal rock art

Rock art 2

Inkiyu Billabong, Arnhem Land

Inkiyu Billabong

Cahill’s Crossing, East Alligator River

Cahills Crossing

Mamukala Billabong, Kakadu

Mamukala billabong

Magpie Geese

Yellow Water region, Kakadu National Park

You don’t have to spend much time in Kakadu before understanding why it deserves world heritage listing. It’s home to hundreds of different types of birds, thousands of plants, and lots of crocodiles and other animals. Over half of the park is managed by its traditional owners, the Bininj, or Mungguy peoples. We observed much wildlife on a sunrise cruise across the river and flood plains of Yellow Water (Ngurrungurrudjba).

Yellow Lake morning reflections

Croc at sunrise

Plumed Whistling Ducks

Plumed whistling-duck

Buffalo

Buffalo

Cattle Egret

Cattle Egret

Sea Eagle

Sea eagle

Waterlillies

Black-necked Stork (Jabiru)

Black-necked stork Jabiru

Darter

Darter

Pheasant Coucal

Pheasant coucal

Salt water crocodile

Croc face

River

Night Heron

Night heron

Egret

Egret

Comb crested Jacana with chicks

comb crested jacana & his chicks

Crocodile eating fish

Croc eating fish

Azure Kingfisher

Azure Kingfisher3

Devil’s Marbles & The Pebbles

South of Tennant Creek we stopped to look at the Devil’s Marbles, or Karlu Karlu. A significant meeting and dreaming site for Kaytetye, Warumungu, Anmatyerr and Alyawarr people, these huge, rounded granite rocks have been shaped by rainwater over millions of years. Further to the north the smaller, granite Pebbles, or Kunjarra remain a special place for Warumungu.

Devil’s Marbles (Karlu, Karlu)

Devils Marbles 2

Devils Marbles 1

The Pebbles (Kunjarra)

The Pebbles 1

The Pebbles 2

West MacDonnell Ranges National Park

The West MacDonnell Ranges National Park features many gorges, waterholes and chasms. While staying at Alice Springs, we spent most of our time exploring these, including the ochre pits still used by the traditional owners, the Arrente. As we moved around we came by a couple of hikers walking the 223km Larapinta Trail. Our bike ride from the John Flynn grave site to Simpsons Gap was a real highlight, taking us past rocky landscapes, native birds and a roving dingo.

MacDonnell Ranges

West MacDonnell Ranges

John Flynn grave

Flynn of the Inland grave

Bike path

Bike path FG to SG

Simpsons Gap

Simpson Gap2

Standley Chasm

Standley Chasm

Ellery Creek Big Hole

Ellery Creek Big Hole (2)

Ochre pits

Ochre pits1

Ochre pits 3

Ormiston Gorge

Ormiston Gorge

 

Kings Canyon, Watarrka National Park

Kings Canyon is a spiritual site of the Luritja people. It’s sandstone dunes protect tropical pools and provide great views for visitors. Our rim walk took us up and across the dune tops, over crevices and through a lush ‘Garden of Eden’.  The Kings Creek walk at the base of the canyon meandered along a dry, stony creek bed lined with coolibah trees and river red gums.  The nearby Kathleen Springs still has remnants of cattle trapping yards.

Kings Canyon

KC3

Rim walk

KC Top of canyon

KC emergency contact

KC rim walk

Crossing to lookout

KC gully

KC rim walkb

Kings Canyon Wall

Kings Creek walk

KC Creek Walk

Kathleen Springs

Kathleen Springs

Kathleen Springs Cattle Trapping Yard ruins

 

KC Wild budgies

KC Lizard

KC Dingo