The Bungle Bungles (Purnululu National Park)
From Woolfe Creek we headed back onto the Tanami and into Halls creek. Here we picked up supplies, grabbed fuel and coffee, then checked out the tourist information centre. At the visitors centre we were warned the road into the Bungle Bungles was slow going and more of a 4WD track, so we didn’t hang around long before setting off up the road to the Bungle Bungles turn off. There were prescribed burns and so the route up was pretty smoky.
The Spring Creek Track into the Bungle Bungles was a really nice 4WD, crossing over a few river’s. A couple were reasonably deep and one had some cheeky cows that played chicken with us.
The scenery was beautiful along the 52km that takes you to the information centre, which took us around 90 minutes. You can see straight away why this is a world heritage area. We popped into the visitors centre and then set up camp on the Northern side at the Kurrajong Campground. There are two sides to the park, with camping at both ends. We decided to base ourselves in the Northern part for our stay. That evening the ridge line was lit up in the sunset, there were scenic lookouts we could have gone to watch this sunset, but the view wasn’t bad from our camping trailer and it had been a long day.
The next morning we set off and drove further around into the park to the hiking tracks. Parking at the Bloodwoods and doing the Homestead Valley hike and then the more interesting and spectacular mini-palms gorge. It takes you through the gorge and up and over lots of rocks to a huge cave, which you can view from a platform they have created.
After a quick walk up to the lookout. The highlight was Echinda Gorge which was a short drive up the road (You can walk to this, taking the escarpment path) This gorge was narrow and high and about 1km in length. Its best done in the late morning, when the sun is overhead lighting up the colours of the rock. We were a little early and so spent a while in cool snaking narrow gorge, which allowed us to watch the rocks change from a dark brown to a glowing burnt orange.
To round the day off, we did the short walk around Stonehenge with its information boards on how each tree is used by the aboriginals for food and medicine. On our second day we got up really early to watch the sunrise over the Domes. These are the picture postcard of this area and didn’t disappoint. They were huge and magnificent and glowed in the early morning sun.
We did the hike out to Whip Snake Gorge, taking in The Window on our way out. Whip Snake Gorge was a nice walk along the river bed but the gorge wasn’t that impressive compared to the rest of this National Park. I loved walking along the river bed, which has been carved by the water to create huge rippling rocks.
On our return Piccaninny Creek Lookout provided excellent view across the valley and then we headed into the famous Cathedral Gorge, which is a huge circular gorge with a pool.
We had a quick look at Elephant Rock on the way out, but we weren’t very impressed. Yeah it kind of looks like an Elephant.
We had planned to stay three nights, but as we had been up early and completed all the hikes in the park that didn’t require a permit we decided to strike camp, before heading back out on the Spring Creek Track. Next stop Kunanara the gate way to the Gibb River Road. I came away wishing we had done a scenic flight over these magnificent domes…maybe next time.