Day 20 – 23 March 2015
Woke up early this morning, did a quick pack up and headed to Yanga Homestead. We had a brief visit there on Friday, but arrived too late to see it all without rushing the experience. So with no time restraints today, we decided to make up for it. Time flew, as next thing we knew it was lunch time. We had had a wonderful time looking around and experiencing a history now not lost to the past.
Nikki one of the Parks officers was extremely helpful and a delight to talk to. She put us onto the free self-tour which came with a small audio player and a key to give you access to the homestead rooms. This site is another example of National Parks doing an excellent job and well worth your time in visiting it.
From the Yanga Homestead we headed back to Balranald to pick some food and 40litres of fuel. ($1.275/litre). Heading northwest on the dirt from here, we crossed dry lakes, like Tin Tin Lake, and many red sand dunes before arriving at Mungo Lookout about 1pm.
On arriving at Mungo camping ground we checked in to see if Matt, Michelle and Chloe had made it safely. It was great catching up with them over a beer and hearing about Matt’s off-road motorcycling. Steve was able to compare notes on the Victorian High Country that Matt and Michelle have also done.
As the evening approached we headed down to the Walls of China for dinner. Dinner was inside as the dust was whipped up by every gust of wind. It was be so dry here as the kangaroos were lined up to lick the taps on the picnic area water tanks for a little moisture. Steve drew some water for the the kangaroos – such a big softy he is.
Mungo National Park was very disappointing, compared to our last visit. So what has changed? You are now not permitted on the lunette (up close to the Walls of China) unless you are accompanied by a licensed tour operator / have a National Park ranger or Aboriginal Elder with you. As a photographer on a casual visit, is was very disappointing as you are only able to photograph the highly publicised lunette (Walls of China) from a distance.
Sadly, the most interesting part of the lunette is dotted with people on the paid tour and therefore detracting further from trying to photographing it. We are so disappointed with what we can now photograph, that we will not return to Mungo National Park and do NOT recommend it to other amateur photographers. It feels like double standards that people with the guides are still allowed to climb over the Walls of China while you cannot even photo them from a distance as they are in the middle of your photo. If you choose the tour option (1 local company charges $175 pp), it ends as soon as the sun sets and this is when we take most of our photos at a location like this.
And to celebrate the beauty of here, Steve and I will show you some of our last photos we took of the area when we were allowed on the lunette a few years ago.