The Olgas were quite impressive – but the rock was amazing. I don’t exactly know what it is – but especially the climbing was different – because it is a rock! from the bottom to the top.

About the “climb” (I wouldn’t call 30 minutes a climb):

On the way to the rock they asked who wanted to climb the rock – and there were about 8 to 10 people. Then the stories came out:
“… 43 people died climbing ..” — “just last December someone fell” — “many more died at hospital later which are not included in the 43 …”

Then, in order to have another go: “… it is a sacred place and you dishonor it by climbing …” “… climbing that is a bad thing…”
etc. etc. etc…. went on for like 30 minutes!!!

Of course, anyone who knows me knows that this did more encourage me than discourage 🙂 At the end I was THE ONLY ONE who did the climb.

My personal take on this:

A. Danger:
Whoever died on that rock at dry conditions and with proper shoes ==> I’d call it natural selection – we are better off without this people. Seriously, nothing dangerous about it. However, you should be fit. Most people I’ve seen up there shouldn’t be up there. On the sign on the bottom they recommend to plan for 2 hours to get up there (took me 30 minutes) – and I think out of the 43 probably approx. 42 died on heart attacks (based on the people I’ve seen attempting the climb)

I’ve seen people barefoot up there… seriously, there are stupid people around.
Another example is the girl that “fell” in December: She deliberately tried to slide down the rock on her butt! by the time she was down she had no trousers, no underwear and no skin left… (was talking to another tour guide of another company while waiting for the bus to return)

I mean there are stupid people around – that might explain the “speech” (and I can’t stress the “proper footwear” enough – with trainers it might actually be dangerous – and there haven’t been many people with proper footwear)

So in some respect I do understand the speech – especial due to the time constraint of 1.5 hours which an average fit person wouldn’t meet and then the really tough time schedule for that one day trip would be screwed up.

B. Cultural
I do not deny that it is a place of cultural importance. I do however not believe that a hike up that rock will dishonor the culture:
– the park is run by an aboriginal consortium – if it would be that bad they wouldn’t have such a good track (ropes, signs, markings, everything) up there
– Accidents have more impact on the tourism – therefore the “don’t climb” signs were from the park owner – who is probably more interested into tourism than the culture (all google searches also only shows that ONE lady who thinks “this is not the thing to do” – and no-one else!)
– The sign about the culture did have a section “… if you climb then do … ” only had parts like “enough time, take water, etc”  – and no mentioning of “do not leave trash, honor the place, be quiet, etc”
– The rock was used as a meeting place by the aboriginal – so why shouldn’t we meet there?

A brief google search showed there are some people who don’t respect the site – agreed:

Last year debate raged once more when Australian football personality Sam Newman was photographed hitting a golf ball off the rock and another man was pictured naked on top.
The incidents outraged Aboriginals all over again, across the country.

(I also read that after 2020 you might not be able to climb the rock as the lease from 1985 expires… so hurry up!)

The views up there were just amazing. Again I think the pictures don’t really show this (and I really tried and deleted a lot of other pics).

At the end the sunset with champagne.

What a beautiful day that was!!!!