Fire mapping in 2018 indicates only one or two areas of prescribed burning during the cool months last year, insufficient to prevent the catastrophic bushfire which has swept through most of the West MacDonnell National Park last month, says the CDU's Andrew Edwards. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Photo: Fire in Ormiston Gorge.
NT Budget 2015 will provide money to seal the Mereenie Inner Loop over the next two years, the 43 kilometres of Larapinta Drive between Hermannsburg and Glen Helen, via Gosse's Bluff (pictured). ERWIN CHLANDA reports.
I had a nice day yesterday: Breakfast in the Roadkill Cafe (mission statement: "You kill it, we grill it."), welcoming a young family back to The Alice and a climb to lofty heights. It doesn't get much better, comments ERWIN CHLANDA. Photo: Spring has arrived on Mount Gillen's southern flank.
All those who haven't been paying attention to the debate so far, please join me for this back-of-the-envelope exercise on big picture issues confronting Alice Springs, looking past the end of our noses and compelling matters such as parking in the CBD on Saturdays. At the moment we are storing our garbage, and process our sewage in an open-air facility, pretty well dead in the middle of our municipality (X marks the spot on the map). There are better options. ERWIN CHLANDA comments.
A restaurant on top of Mount Gillen and a cable car to take people up there are being discussed informally, as part of a wish list, by members of the town council, the Alice Springs News Online has learned. The idea has been raised many times in the past 40 years. This time the suggestion has been made to have the starting point at the Desert Park, reliable sources are saying. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: The visitors' centre, with photoshopped gondola, at the Desert Park, suggested to be the lower terminal for the cable car.
UPDATE Monday, May 6, 2pm: Cr Geoffrey Booth says it was he who raised the idea and explains why.
The big country we live in turns into a monster when it burns, thumbing its nose at our feeble efforts to regain the upper hand.
It's the more agonising when the cause is human stupidity, carelessness or malice, as appears to have been the case a few days ago when part of the West MacDonnell National park, our greatest tourism asset, was turned into cinder.
An area of about 40 square kilometers was burned.
One blaze was started by the roadside near Redbank Gorge.
Another, ignited in dozens of spots for some 30 kilometers on the Glen Helen to Alice Springs road, was lit by sparks from a car driven on its rims.ERWIN CHLANDA reports.
ABOVE: The Finke River (foreground) stopped the bushfire just short of a popular bush camp, and the Glen Helen Resort. Mount Sonder is in the background, charred bushland in the middle ground. LEFT: A curry wattle re-grows after a bushfire in the MacDonnell Ranges, near Ormiston.
Backpackers Zoé Mulliez and Maxime (Max for short) Delattre, political science students from Rennes in France, ignored poor advance publicity about Alice Springs and decided to make it part of their Central Australian visit earlier this month. Introduced to them by a mutual friend, the Alice Springs News Online asked them to write a frank account of their experience, why they had come, what they had found, and what they thought about it on reflection. It's not all pretty but the good news is that they still want to come back.
After a one-week journey that had taken us from Sydney to Adelaide, we were getting ready to our next step: Alice Springs. As European backpackers and through our different connections in Australia, we had received several feedbacks about the city which were, to say the least, fairly derogatory. Were we only content with the impressions we had heard, we would have expected to come across a ghost city inhabited by an Aboriginal community believed to be hostile to white people. However, Alice Springs, well known by travelers to be a stop-by city to access the Red Centre, sounded anyway attractive to us. We really wanted to get an understanding of the life-style of the inhabitants of the Outback as well as the Aboriginal culture and this way, be able to form our own opinion. Zoé Mulliez and Maxime Delattre comment.