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The Macdonnell Ranges

Overall still loving NT and all the cool spots we are discovering along our journey.

Finally made it into Alice, where we went and set up camp for 3 nights at the Gap hotel. We used our 3 days / 3 nights for RnR, restocking, catching up on social media and just preparing for our next leg out to the West Macdonnell ranges! With all the pre-flight checks completed and full restocked we started our next leg!

Our first stop was Simpsons Gap! Only a short walk from the carpark and a small gorge, but it was beautiful! There wasn't enough water for a swim (at the time of our visit), but you could still dip your feet in to cool off. Point Howard Lookout, was our next stop. We pulled over here for a bite for lunch and so rusty could stretch her legs. You can actually free camp here, we could have only imagined what the views would have looked like at sunset. We had a one more spot we wanted to check out before the day’s end, so we continued on....

Ochre pits were our next stop. Again, only a short walk but great to see and read about. The different colours of ochre in the rocks were crazy to see. After our visit to the ochre pits, we decided it was time to find somewhere to set up camp. We drove into the Glen Helen Homestead to check it out and ask for a spot. They were having major IT issues and all their computers were down, so they weren't checking anyone in as they didn't know what sites they had free. They told us to go up the road and camp at the Finke River, which we did.

Their loss was our gain, as this camp spot was magical! Who knew in the middle of Australia there was this mini oasis! White sand, a clear river surrounded by greenery and it was FREE. The sunsets were ridiculous! We set up for 2 nights as we explored a bit more of the surrounds. We trekked back to Ormiston Gorge and completed the 'pound walk'. The scenery was breathtaking and at the end of our loop we took a dip in the refreshing gorge. There were lots of families here at our time of visit and we could see why. A large volume of water, sandy beach surrounds and with a campground onsite and a shop it had it all.

Next day we packed up and continued the journey. Our next stop, was when we found our favourite gorge of the trip so far! Redbank gorge - put it on your list now! That place was incredible! Only a short 20 minute stroll to get to the gorge and once we got there, we were in awe. Do yourself a favour and swim down the narrow opening, you won't be disappointed at what you'll see. After our refreshing swim, we let our tyres down and jumped on the dirt permit road.

Just after lunch we arrived at 'goosebluff' - a crater impact site! Millions of years ago, a crater crashed to earth and left a massive destruction zone with a 5km radius! Be sure to climb up the small mountain to look out at the crater.

We piled back into the nav and continued on to our next camp. The Kings Canyon free camp, located 25km north of Kings Canyon itself. You can set up camp, on the edge of the mountain and have wonderful views of the canyon in the distance! We were lucky enough to have this spot all to ourselves for the night!

Finally made it to Kings Canyon and all we can say is wow! We did the popular rim walk which took us approx. 4 hours. The hardest part was the climb at the beginning, it's nicknamed 'heartbreak hill' or heart-attack hill, as it's quite a steep ascent. Once you get up the top, you can explore the rest of the canyon at a leisurely pace.

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