The final day of the official trail through the mountains of Central Australia culminates in the challenging ascent to the summit of Mt Sonder, and the end of the Larapinta Trail. As we approach the top of our final climb the sense of achievement hits home, a vast 360 degree panorama of Central Australia surrounds us, rugged and yet from up here so very peaceful. Remote desert peaks stretch as far as the eye can see. The view north looks 100km into the Tanami Desert, to the east we see the majority of the Western MacDonnell Ranges and a large part of what we have walked in the past 15 days. To the south is the meteor crater of Gosse Bluff and to the west Mount Zeil, the Northern Territory’s highest mountain. It is the only way to finish such an amazing journey and is something remembered for a lifetime. Return to camp for our final night together, with time in the afternoon to rest in surrounds or visit Glen Helen Gorge.
Breakfast at 2:30am meant a 2am wake up – all this to make it to the top of Mt Sonder for sunrise. We just made it in time! It was so so cold at the top – we were very glad to have our down jackets, gloves, beanies and buffs. And thanks Jill for carrying hot water for tea and for the amazing banana cake (with added chocolate and nuts!).
Loved running down the mountain at the end, stopping to take off layers. I took Walter’s leash off and he went sprinting off – waiting for me alongside the riverbed at the bottom.
A much appreciated afternoon relax after an epic journey……even my shoes took some well-earned time off….
Here is a short video of the sunrise on Mt Sonder – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dnhOKIDF0w
Even the final day of the trail was long – another 15km day!!
You can watch a summary of our day 15 adventures here.