Kakadu National Park: scrambling boulders

from June 29

We were up and on the road early again this morning, this time to Kakadu National Park. I found a cup of coffee at a gas station. It was surprisingly decent.

From there we continued on to the Ubirr (pronounced ew-beer) Art Site. The hike took us past some ancient Aboriginal rock paintings dating back 20,000+ years, with the red ochre drawings still the most vivid. The view at the top of the Nardab floodplains was the most impressive, and we spent some time at the top just enjoying the scenery.

Our camp tonight is at a place called Jabiru, so we set up camp for lunch before heading out to spend the afternoon at Jim Jim Falls. The falls were opened just two weeks ago, having been cleared by the rangers as free from crocodiles after the wet season.

We didn’t spend nearly as much time at the falls as I would have liked. We drove for an hour and 4-wheeled for even longer, and once we got to the parking lot, we still had a 45 minute hike in front of us. The hike was only 900 meters, but it was intense. We spent most of our time climbing rocks and scrambling over boulders. My ankle rolled, and I fell just before we reached the falls, but thankfully I only got a minor scratch. Several others were the same, and one girl had to go to the hospital because we thought she broke her arm (she didn’t, thankfully).

Once we got to the falls, the sun had already moved from the white sand beach, and the water was so cold I refused to go in it. The view was pretty, but for all the effort I was a bit disappointed. I thought we would have has more than an hour to appreciate the site, and to spend some time bathing in the warm sunlight.

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