I liked Alice Springs, but it was when I reached Ayers Rock, or Uluru, that I began to fall in love with Australia’s Red Centre. It wasn’t just the Rock; there was something about the soft, red earth, the wildflowers and wildlife, the air and sky, the emptiness and openness that captivated me. It made me think of a line from D. H. Lawrence, who wrote that Australia possessed a “strange, as it were, invisible beauty…a sense of subtle, remote, formless beauty more poignant than anything ever experienced before.” This was where my love affair with the Outback began.
And at the center of that wild landscape was Uluru, the towering monolith that is almost a symbol of the Centre. Most photos of Ayers Rock show it from a distance, which has the advantage of showing its isolation and the lovely color changes at sunset. But closer up, the Rock’s size and dynamic nature (creating its own wind storms and ecology) are better appreciated. The photo below is my favorite of the many photos I’ve taken of Uluru, as I think it communicates something of the impressiveness of the monolith.