Our next stop was Yourambulla Caves to see Aboriginal rock art. The last couple of rock art locations offered only a meager selection of drawings so I was eager to see something new. What I wasn’t looking forward to was the hike to get there.
Why was everything so far away and hard to reach? Oh, right. This was Australia and that’s part of the charm. If this were America, we would’ve built a parking lot, plopped a gift shop out front and charged admission. We may have even paved a walkway and replaced the ladder up to the caves with an escalator so everyone could get to it. Out here in the middle of Australia, they don’t mess with things and leave them as they are. There isn’t a lot of commercialization (well, beyond the fact that we’re on a hired bus tour) of historical sites like this one, and visitors can get a sense of how things were in the past.
The hike to Yourambulla Caves wasn’t too long, steep or difficult. But, it was on an incline and you did have to climb a very tall iron ladder to get there. I’m not sure what you’d do if you were afraid of heights. That ladder, while sturdy, was just about the tallest ladder I’ve ever climbed. I felt exhausted by the time we reached the caves, but the view of the surrounding plains was nice. I think all the days on the road were getting to me. It would’ve been nicer to spend some time in cities between tours just to wind down a little. Lesson learned.
Like the Hawaiians, Aboriginal people used verbal communication and didn’t have a written langauge. They passed on their history and lessons through songs and stories. Basic drawings like the cave art may portray their teachings to their young. The drawings were painted with ochre and water. Sometimes they added plant substances for color.
|Slide Album: Yourambulla Caves|