Monday 21st April, (Curtain Springs/Ayres Rock).
Another trip to Ayres Rock today, and it only emphasised the fact that one could stay around here for a fair while and just visit the rock over and over as it is truly such a spectacle. As Linda stated, “Ayres Rock is, after all, Australia and its icon”.
We did contemplate the climb up the rock but after what I had heard about the difficulty of the climb we had no intention of exceeding about 20 feet of the climb, Linda in fact did not even get quite as far as I thought she might. I found I was having extreme difficulty in climbing because the steepness of the rock face prevented me comfortably bending my ankle far enough to firmly place my feet on the surface sufficiently to attain maximum grip, so consequently my feet were slipping on the rock. Not to say what condition my muscles on the rear lower leg would have been in if I had done more of the climb.
Below is a photo of the climb, or at least a small section of it from the bottom, and believe me it is very steep. There are no stairs at all just the surface of the sheer rock face and one has to rely on the grip of ones shoes to be able to climb. There is a chain bolted to the rock to use as an aid in climbing but it does not start for about ten feet above the small rocks near the bottom. I reckon that this is a test so if one cannot make it to the chain on ones own then they do not belong on the climb, and believe me there were a lot of people who did not make it to the chain, including us. I believe I could have made it to the chain but when Linda stopped at the end of the rocks I stopped at about half way to the chain. As I said my feet were slipping on the rocks so it was probably a good idea to stop where I did as it was.
The track up the rock.
We also stayed for the sunset to witness the changing of colour of the rock.