Glen Helen resort
Trip Start May 02, 2009
35Trip End Jun 07, 2009
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After packing up, we drove the 6km to King's Canyon to start the walk - it was sunny and warm but quite windy. The walk starts with a very steep climb up a series of rock steps, some natural and some man-made. It is quite rough and you need to stop several times on the way up to get your breath. Liz was very upset when a young (6YO) ran past us up the steps at breakneck speed while she was hanging on for dear life, worrying that the wind was going to sweep her away. To her credit, even with her fear of heights, she pushed on and ended up enjoying the walk. The walk lived up to expectations. The scenery is spectacular with more photo opportunities than you can cope with.
The walk itself was not as hard as the Valley of the Winds walk, with far less up and downs. That is not to say it is easy - there are many sections of clambering over rock walls and loose slippery stones underfoot.
If you are in this area - you should do this walk.
After the walk, we were originally scheduled to drive to Palm Valley. We have been informed that thetrack into Palm valley is very rough and rocky and our little car would not make it in (especially with the camper behind). We then decided we would instead head to Glen Helen for the night before tackling the Tanami the following day.
To get to Glen Helen we decided to drive the Mereenie Loop road - 200 Km of corrugated dirt was how the lady at King's Canyon described it. You need to purchase a pass to drive this road as it is operated by Aboriginal Land councils. The pass costs $5.50 per vehicle for the trip.
The road was very mixed - some badly corrugated sections slowed us down to 20kph; other sections we could travel at 70 kph. Was bumpy but we got through with no real issues.
This road then joined Namatjira Drive which we drove down 35 km of sealed road to Glen Helen. We stayed at the caravan park of the Glen Helen Resort - using the word "resort" is a little pretentious! It was a fairly rustic little campground with very ordinary facilities. However, they provided live entertainment in the bar area that night (Chris Aronsten we think his name was). He was actually very good; so we spent a few pleeasant hours listening to his songs and enjoying a few reds.