After 4 hours of driving from Yalara to Kings Canyon, four stiff bodies were eager to stretch their legs and go for a hike up and around Kings Canyon. We arrived at Kings Canyon at 3 o’clock in the afternoon and began the hike towards the Canyon.
At the beginning of the walk, we read up on the history of the canyon and noticed the hiking guidelines. Signs suggested allowing 3-4 hours to complete the Kings Canyon walk. Upon reading this sign, we were filled with a little concern, knowing that the sun sets at 6 pm, and so we would need to be off the canyon and back at the car by that time. This only allowed us three hours to complete the walk. Despite this realization, we decided to take the gamble and started off on what we would soon find out to be a fairly challenging walk. The first few hundred meters of the Kings Canyon walk is stairs up to a steep incline. It is also known as “heart attack hill”. It took us 45 minutes to climb the steps of this first mountain. We were filled with comfort once we arrived at the top of the mountain, as we found a defibrillator and radio hanging on a pole. Whilst none of us required the defibrillator, we did pause for a moment once at the top to regain our breath and energy.
At this point, the hardest part of the walk was over, and we began to walk around the top of the canyon. It took us a further 45mins to get to the middle of the top of the canyon. From this point, we could see the entire canyon, and a long way into the distance; a continuing great expanse of red dirt. The view was absolutely dazzling. We could see people lining the opposite side of the canyon, standing on the edge yelling out ‘Koo-wee’! The echo was incredible!
A few minutes later we rounded a corner and stopped. We stood still and listened. We could hear the silence. It was deafening. Such a surreal feeling.
Fifteen minutes later we were walking down steps into a stunning place called ‘The Garden of Eden’, which was a little paradise hidden within the rocks of the canyon. There was a small river running through the bottom, trees, plants and flowers all over and a little wallaby hopping along. We crossed the bridge over the river, and began the ascent out of the Garden of Eden, back up to the top of the Canyon.
We continued to follow the arrows around the canyon until we began the descent back to the carpark. As we were walking down the last mountain we looked out at the stunning view of the sun setting in the outback.
Once back at the car the four tired bodies climbed into the car to head to the Kings Canyon Resort cabin which they were staying at, for a well-earnt sleep.
If hiking the Canyon doesn’t interest you, here are some suggestions of other things you may like to do or see:
Sleep Well – There are a few properties not far from Kings Canyon where you can rest your head. Kings Creek Station is close by and is an operational camel and cattle station. Kings Canyon Station has camping, glamping and safari cabin options, and you can request dinner under the stars. You can also enjoy a special five-course dinner under the moonlight while staying at Kings Canyon Resort. This ‘Under a Desert Moon’ experience is held four nights a week between April and October. Kings Canyon Resort has standard and spa rooms in the hotel, as well as caravan and campsites in a holiday park.
Fly – Take flight over King Canyon on a scenic helicopter from Kings Creek Station. The flight takes in breathtaking mountain Carmichael Crag, as well as the Garden of Eden and Kathleen Springs. Kings Creek Station also runs quad bike tours over the red sand dunes.
Whether walking, flying, or riding you are sure to have a magnificent time exploring one of Australia’s most popular tourist spots; the Kings Canyon.