Arltunga Historical Reserve

We came back to camp, had morning tea and packed our lunch to head off to Arltunga Historical Reserve for the day.

The Arltunga Historical Reserve is really interesting and played an important part in helping getting Alice Springs established, to find out why take a visit out there yourself,  110kms east of Alice.


First point of call is the visitor information centre which gives some history of the place, information boards, old machinery and a short film that is well worth watching explaining how Arltunga came about. You can also pick up several information leaflets describing some of the short drives and walks in the reserve.

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There any many old ruins and mines.

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A great mine is the MacDonnell Range Reef Mine, where you can climb down a ladder and have a look underground and see the conditions the miners worked in. Take a torch and expected get a bit dusty. A great day and well worth the trip.

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We finished the day with a campfire talk with the ranger.


Trephina Gorge – Day 3

Thurs 26th – The wind was howling last night, really strange when it was so mild when we went to bed, we didn’t even need the heater on.

After breaky we did the 45 min rim walk. It’s a steep climb up and you are walking up and down rocks but our effort was well rewarded. Amazing sight looking back down and across the gorge. It’s a case of which direction do you point your camera. The ghost gums with their white truck stand out against the deep red rocks and deep blue sky.

As they say a picture tells a thousand words.

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Trephina Gorge – Day 2

Wed 25th – It was so peaceful last night, we had a big sleep in. A relaxing breaky and then a short stroll to check out the lighting on the cliffs. Wow we are going to have so much click click going on.

The wind has come up blowing dust around the camping areas, have to keep everything closed.



We did the drive into John Hayes Rock hole, talk about a rough 4×4 road, at times we were driving on the creek bed. Not sure it was worth the effort.

After tea we went and did some semi night shots trying to get all the gorge under the same lighting. Very hard. One side of the gorge never lights up, well at least in the time of year we were there. When it got dark we had fun painting the rocks with torch light and lots of fun on a really mild night.



Trephina Gorge

Tues – 24th. With all of our bits and pieces fixed or sorted, fuel, water and supplies re stocked we left the park. We stopped at the car wash in town and did a quick wash of the Ute and trailer getting off all the dust, at least for a short time. After lunch we headed off towards Trephina Gorge in the East Mac Donnell Ranges.

We decided to head straight for Trephina Gorge to set up camp and do Emily and Jessie Gaps on the way back in.

Wow wow wow, this is what it’s all about. This is why we put up with the dust, corrugations, flies, vehicle issues, the dry, cold nights and sometimes very harsh conditions. This is why we come out to these remote areas, areas where you can only see these amazing awesome breathtaking scenery.  This is what it is all about and makes it all so worth while, what wonderful memories are made off.

You are not long out of Alice on the Ross Hwy before you are greeted with ochre coloured ranges. Amazing site against the deep blue sky. The drive from the Hwy into Trephina Gorge is nothing short of breathtaking. Deep ochre cliffs that can only be described as WOW.

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About 9kms down the road you come to Bluff Campground that says no trailers or caravans allowed, not sure why yet. It sits at the base of the amazing large deep red cliff. A bit further down is the Gorge Campground, at first it doesn’t seem as nice but has the advantage of only being a short stroll to the gorge. The sites are dusty and are not that big. We put ourselves down one end, which gave us plenty of room and dust.


There are toilets and drinking water at both sites, as well as fire pits and free gas BBQ’s. Price is $3.30 per person. There is also another small camp area at John Hayes Rockhole along a 4×4 track.

We did a short stroll along the gorge that really wet our appetite leaving us wanting more. Tomorrow is another day.

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NT -Trephina Gorge

Trephina Gorge, Gorge Campground – T, OR, $, DW. 85 km E of Alice Springs, East Macdonnell Ranges. Long drops, drinking water. Very dusty sites, not very big but new campground being put in especially for campers and caravans. Amazing vista from campsite. Rating – Difficult to rate, as a campsite 2 but has the gorge so with the gorge 3.5.

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