Today’s K-word takes us to Kings Canyon in the Outback of Australia.
It had been a life-long dream of mine to someday travel Down Under, and ten years ago we seized the opportunity to make Ironman Australia our first international race. In fact, Husband was the only one who actually did the racing part, but afterwards we set out to explore as much of this amazing country as we could squeeze into a 3 week vacation.
I had heard about Kings Canyon from a travel brochure that described it as the Australian Grand Canyon. That sealed it for me and hiking Kings Canyon became a must-do on our adventure list. In hindsight, I wonder whether the person who wrote that brochure had actually intended to compare it to the American Grand Canyon, for I didn’t think they were similar at all. Either way, the discovery of Kings Canyon did not disappoint.
Getting there is not a minor excursion from any major city. Australia is a BIG country and we visited Kings Canyon on our return trip to Alice Springs from Uluru (Ayers Rock) – which in itself is remote from virtually everything. Kings Canyon is part of the Watarrka National Park and to give some perspective to this map, is located about 450 km from Alice Springs.
With a guide, we hiked for about 4 hours along cliff edges and through narrow valleys sandwiched between walls of rock that looked like layers of stacked pancakes.
As with any significant natural wonder, to say it was breathtakingly beautiful would be an understatement. Since I cannot possibly describe the magnificence and grandeur of these spectacular rock walls, I will let the pictures speak for themselves.
There is so much to see and do in Australia. I suspect the typical traveller interested in making the journey into the Outback to visit Uluru, would make the day trip to Kings Canyon as we did. Those few hours on this very scenic hike were definitely worth the effort.