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The Larapinta Trail winds through the West MacDonnell Ranges east of Alice Springs in central Australia. Its total length is over 200km, but it's quite feasible to walk selected parts of it as there's road access at several points along its length. In my opinion it rivals Karijini as the most scenic walk in Australia.
In August 2010 David Singleton (pictured in many of the following photos) and I walked the eastern half from Ellery Creek to Alice Springs. The region had seen abnormally high rainfall in the preceding months which made for an abundance of bird life and flowering plants. See below for the 2003 leg from Ellery Creek to Mount Sonder.
A few points to note:
- By walking from west to east you avoid having to organise transport for the end of the walk, as you walk right back into Alice Springs. However...
- The last day of the trip is the least interesting, and I don't think you'd miss much by stopping at Simpson's Gap.
- Standley Chasm has a kiosk and (in 2010 at least) you can put in a food drop there for a few dollars. The campground there was small, sloped and close to the diesel-powered generator, so we decided to camp a little further along the track.
- July or early August is probably the best time to go.
- You can probably get most of your supplies in Alice Springs. It has two large supermarkets, an outdoor equipment shop and a number of tourism operators who can provide transport.
See the official Larapinta Trail website for more information. I highly recommend getting the official Larapinta Trail Package.