Thursday, 12 April 2012

Ulysses AGM at Mildura – Mungo Part 2

The famous and much photographed part of Mungo National Park is known as the Walls of China.  This stark landscape has been sculpted by wind and rain over many, many thousands of years.

You are not allowed to visit this site without a guide, and it was so well worth it, as we wouldn’t have learnt nearly as much.

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The relics being unearthed here by nature are rewriting the story of human evolution.  The earliest known human remains have been found here.  The megafauna - kangaroos, emus and wombats were here, as were Tasmanian devils, Tasmanian tigers and dingos.  This is putting into doubt the theory that the aboriginals came from Indonesia bring the dingos with them.  It now appears that the dingos were already here.

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Roger told us how the termite nest were underground and the aborigines used them as ovens.  They were all around the shore of the ancient lake and as the families moved around they just used the next oven, then when they moved on, closed it down in readiness for the next group to use.  They would have eaten fresh water mussels and fish.  He found an ivory fish ear on the ground that had been exposed recently.

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The research is conducted by the ANU with the tribal elders being involved.  There are no “Digs” on site.  Nature does that.  Therefore, lots has been found over the last couple of years with all the rain.

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Likewise, nothing is fenced off.  They have taken a cue from nature to preserve sites too.  Placing a stick on the ground catches the shifting sand.

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The remains being uncovered are calcified, rather than fossilised, and don’t last very long once exposed.

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Behind the stark lunar landscape are big sand dunes.

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I loved seeing all the animal tracks. Emu.

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Tiny lizards.

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Roger showed us how to throw a boomerang. 

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Of course Mick had to have a go.

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As did Garry.

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It was great just wandering around taking it all in.

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One lady was busy sketching it all.

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By  now the sun was getting lower and the light was changing.

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And when we turned around……….

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Linda was just enjoying taking it all in.

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Nearly gone.

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Then  the light changed once again.

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Imagine having to see this every day with your job.  Poor fellows.

It was amazing how quiet everyone was while we watched the sun set.  We were all mesmerised.

A wonderful memory was made on this visit.

We arrived back at our campsite at about 10.30pm, having been away for eight hours.  We travelled most of the way back in the dust of a truck, and there still was no breeze.  The chanced of that happening twice on such a remote road makes you laugh.

If ever you have the opportunity of visiting this area, grab it with both hands.  You won’t regret it.


Fiona said...

Such interesting things to see and you have captured some amazing pictures.. thanks for sharing your trip with us...

Chookyblue...... said...

oh bringing back memories of my trip there years ago.............such a different gorgeous location..........

Anita said...

wow what a great place - have always wanted to go there. Amazing how the colours of the landscape change with the light of day