Earlier this year, Helen and I assisted in a Sydney church for some weeks, and as part of their thanks, the generous folk of this church gave us a few nights’ accommodation “somewhere, some time”.
Several years ago, on our way home from two weeks in Central Australia, we spent two nights at Wilpena Pound, in South Australia’s Flinders Ranges. We decided to put this area on our list “to be revisited”. And so we’ve at last done this, over four days… and we hope not for the last time. One of our children’s family members go there every year or two, and many Adelaide schools program for every student to experience at least one school camp in the Flinders Ranges. But to really explore the region you need a 4WD and bush camping and serious hiking gear!
These Ranges are South Australia’s longest mountain chain (at 430 km), starting 200 km north of Adelaide with the ridges rising just east of Port Pirie and the northern Spencer’s Gulf, and stretching another 250 km further north into the dry heart of the continent. For some basic information on the geology, flora and fauna, and history of these mountains, check out the Wikipedia page.
For us, this region is less than 450 km from home, an easy day’s drive. It is unique in its own way and no less fascinating than Australia’s Centre with its iconic MacDonnell Ranges, King’s Canyon, Uluru and Olgas. Both regions include arid wilderness and mountains with the vegetation and fauna of the desert. The mountain ranges in both regions speak eloquently about the unimaginable beauty, age and history of much of Australia. The sandstone of the Flinders Ranges includes fossils of the ocean, and it’s only because the region was capped by hard dolerite that these sandstone layers can still be explored – and have not joined the vast flatness of the surrounding wilderness.
Seeing the obvious age of this warped and weathered land doesn’t diminish our Christian faith… Just like when we gaze at the outback night sky we say: How great is our God!
Time to stop writing and reading – let some of our photos do the talking!
Before we reached our accommodation at Rawnsley Park Station, we stopped at a lookout with this panoramic view of the Elder Range.
Flowers and trees
Human enterprise in the Flinders Ranges
Thank you for a memorable weekend, good people of Dee Why!
Just after completing this post, a good friend of mine posted a link to a Christian artist in nearby Hawker who has created a 360 degree “Wilpena Panorama”. Check out his site – wonderful stuff!