Content Photo Gallery

Ayers Rock
• Country:
• State:
Northern Territory
• Elevation:
• Prominence:
• Coordinates:
863 m (2,831 ft)
348 m (1,142 ft)
25°20′42″S 131°02′10″E
• Uluru
• Name
• Description
• Climate and Seasons
• Fauna
• Flora
• Photo Gallery (1)
• Photo Gallery (2)
• Links
Uluru, also referred to as Ayers Rock, is a large sandstone rock
formation in the southern part of the Northern Territory, central Australia.
It lies 335 km (208 mi) south west of the nearest large town, Alice
Springs; 450 km (280 mi) by road. Kata Tjuta and Uluru are the two
major features of the Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park. Uluru is sacred to
the Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjara, the Aboriginal people of the area. It
has many springs, waterholes, rock caves and ancient paintings. Uluru is
listed as a World Heritage Site.
The local Pitjantjatjara people call the landmark Uluṟu. This word has no
particular meaning in their language, also known as Pitjantjatjara, but it is also
used as a local family name by the senior Traditional Owners of Uluru.
On 19 July 1873, the surveyor William Gosse discovered Uluṟu and named it
Ayers Rock in honour of the then-Chief Secretary of South Australia, Sir Henry
Ayers. Since then, both names have been used, although Ayers Rock was the
name used by most people.
In 1993, a dual naming policy was adopted that allowed official names that
consist of both the traditional Aboriginal name and the English name. On 15
December 1993, it was renamed "Ayers Rock/Uluru" and became the first
officially dual-named feature in the Northern Territory. The order of the dual
names was officially reversed to "Uluru/Ayers Rock" on 6 November 2002
following a request from the Regional Tourism Association in Alice Springs.
Uluru is one of Australia's most recognisable natural icons. The worldrenowned sandstone formation stands 348 m (1,142 ft) high (863
m/2,831 ft above sea level) with most of its bulk below the ground, and
measures 9.4 km (5.8 mi) in circumference. Both Uluru and Kata Tjuta
have great cultural significance for the Aṉangu Traditional landowners,
who led walking tours to inform visitors about the local flora and fauna,
bush foods and the Aboriginal dreamtime stories of the area.
Climate and Seasons
The park receives an average rainfall of 307.7 mm (12.1 in) per year,
and average temperatures are 37.8 °C (100.0 °F) in the summer and
4.7 °C (40.5 °F) in the winter. Temperature extremes in the park have
been recorded at 45 °C (113 °F) during the summer and −5 °C (23 °F)
during winter nights. UV levels are extreme most days, averaging
between 11 and 15.
Local Aboriginal people recognise five seasons:
1. Piriyakutu (August/September) - Animals breed and food plants flower
2. Mai Wiyaringkupai (November/December) - The hot season when food
becomes scarce
3. Itjanu (January/February/March) - Sporadic storms can roll in suddenly
4. Wanitjunkupai (April/May) - Cooler weather
5. Wari (June/July) - Cold season bringing morning frosts
Historically, 46 species of native mammals are known to have been living
in the Uluru region; according to recent surveys there are currently 21.
Aṉangu acknowledge that a decrease in the number has implications for
the condition and health of the landscape. Moves are supported for the
reintroduction of locally extinct animals such as Malleefowl, Common
Brushtail Possum, Rufous Hare-wallaby or Mala, Bilby, Burrowing
Bettong and the Black-flanked Rock-wallaby.
Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park flora represents a large portion of plants found
in Central Australia. A number of these species are considered rare and
restricted in the park or the immediate region. There are many rare and
endemic plants at Uluru and Kata Tjuta.
The growth and reproduction of plant communities rely on irregular rainfall. Some
plants are able to survive fire and some are dependent on it to reproduce.
Plants are an important part of Tjukurpa, and there are ceremonies for each
of the major plant foods. Many plants are associated with ancestral beings.
Flora in Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park can be broken into the following
1. Punu – trees
2. Puti – shrubs
3. Tjulpun-tjulpunpa – flowers
4. Ukiri - grasses
Photo Gallery
Uluru at sunset
Photo Gallery
Uluru (helicopter view)
Close up
Reference Material
• Kata Tjuta, sometimes written Kata Tjuta (Kata Joota), and also known as
Mount Olga (or colloquially as The Olgas), are a group of large domed rock
formations or bornhardts located about 365 km southwest of Alice Springs, in the
southern part of the Northern Territory, central Australia.
• Pitjantjatjara is the name of both an Aboriginal people of the Central Australian
desert, and their language.
• Yankunytjatjara (also Yankuntatjara, Jangkundjara, Kulpantja) is an Australian
Aboriginal language.
• William Christie Gosse (1842–1881), explorer, was born in Hertfordshire,
England and migrated to Australia with his father in 1850. In 1859 he entered the
Government service of South Australia.
• Anangu is an Australian Aboriginal language of the Pama-Nyungan family,
spoken in the desert regions of western and central Australia.
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