Explore the rugged West MacDonnell Ranges

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West MacDonnell Ranges

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West MacDonnell Ranges

Alice Springs is flanked to the east and west by the rugged and ancient MacDonnell Ranges which stretch for 644 kilometres either side of the town. Venture west of Alice Springs through the breathtaking desert terrain of the West MacDonnell Ranges and you’ll discover how over time, erosion has created incredible gorges and gaps along the ranges that are just waiting to be explored.

Standley Chasm is just one of many spectacular places to visit along the West MacDonnell Ranges. The narrow chasm, formed by rushing floodwaters over thousands of years, cuts through quartzite rock to form a jagged walkway through the range. Wander through the chasm and as the light shifts across the divide, you’ll be treated to a magnificent display of colours like you’ve never seen before.

Further along experience the calming beauty of Simpsons Gap where water flows through a small gap in the ranges providing a sheltering haven for a range of flora and fauna. You’ll see beautiful ghost gum trees surrounding a permanent waterhole and if you’re lucky you’ll spot the elusive black footed rock wallabies hiding among the rocks.

  • Simpson’s Gap
    Simpsons Gap is one of the most famous sights along the West MacDonnell Ranges. Set in the tranquil surrounds of a permanent waterhole shaded by towering cliffs and ghost gums, it’s a place you’ll never forget.
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  • Standley Chasm
    West of Alice Springs is Standley Chasm (Angkerle), an incredible feat of nature that cuts through the quartzite rock of the West MacDonnell Ranges. The narrow gap, formed by rushing floodwaters over thousands of years, creates an alleyway through walls of rock that reach up to 80 metres in height.
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