Various - the rock collection: soft rock



Ayers Rock


Ayers Rock is also known by its Aboriginal name 'Uluru'. It is a sacred part of Aboriginal creation mythology, or dreamtime - reality being a dream. Uluru is considered one of the great wonders of the world and one of Australia's most recognizable natural icons. Uluru is a large magnetic mound large not unlike Silbury Hill in England. It is located on a major planetary grid point much like the Great Pyramid in Egypt. Ayers Rock is a large sandstone rock formation in central Australia, in the Northern Territory. It is located in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, 350 km southwest of Alice Springs at 25 degrees 20' 41" S 131 degrees 01' 57" E. It is the second-largest monolith in the world (after Mount Augustus, also in Australia), more than 318 m (986 ft) high and 8 km (5 miles) around. It also extends km ( miles) into the ground. It was described by explorer Ernest Giles in 1872 as "the remarkable pebble".' Uluru is an inselberg, literally "island mountain", an isolated remnant left after the slow erosion of an original mountain range. Uluru is also often referred to as a monolith, although this is a somewhat ambiguous term because of its multiple meanings, and thus a word generally avoided by geologists. The remarkable feature of Uluru is its homogeneity and lack of jointing and parting at bedding surfaces, leading to the lack of development of scree slopes and soil. These characteristics led to its survival, while the surrounding rocks were eroded. For the purpose of mapping and describing the geological history of the area, geologists refer to the rock strata making up Uluru as the Mutitjulu Arkose, and it is one of many sedimentary formations filling the Amadeus Basin.

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Age and Origin The Mutitjulu Arkose is believed to be of about the same age as the conglomerate at Kata Tjuta, and to have a similar origin despite the rock type being different, but it is younger than the rocks exposed to the east at Mount Conner, and unrelated to them. The strata at Uluru are nearly vertical, dipping to the south west at 85 degrees, and have an exposed thickness of at least 2,400 m (7,900 ft). The strata dip below the surrounding plain and no doubt extend well beyond Uluru in the subsurface, but the extent is not known. The rock was originally sand, deposited as part of an extensive alluvial fan that extended out from the ancestors of the Musgrave, Mann and Petermann Ranges to the south and west, but separate from a nearby fan that deposited the sand, pebbles and cobbles that now make up Kata Tjuta. The similar mineral composition of the Mutitjulu Arkose and the granite ranges to the south is now explained. The ancestors of the ranges to the south were once much larger than the eroded remnants we see today. They were thrust up during a mountain building episode referred to as the Petermann Orogeny that took place in late Neoproterozoic to early Cambrian times (550-530 Ma), and thus the Mutitjulu Arkose is believed to have been deposited at about the same time. The arkose sandstone which makes up the formation is composed of grains that show little sorting based on grain size, exhibit very little rounding and the feldspars in the rock are relatively fresh in appearance. This lack of sorting and grain rounding is typical of arkosic sandstones and is indicative of relatively rapid erosion from the granites of the growing mountains to the south. The layers of sand were nearly horizontal when deposited, but were later tilted to their near vertical position during a later episode of mountain building, possibly the Alice Springs Orogeny of Palaeozoic age (400-300 Ma). Despite current estimates of the age of the geological formations that comprise Uluru, however, the arkose sandstone which makes up the formation is composed of grains that are many different sizes and are jagged, and the feldspars in the rock are fresh and shiny. Flood geologists argue that this indicates a comparatively fast deposit, on the order of only a few years or less. They state that if the arkose grains had been transported more slowly they would be more rounded and evenly sorted, and the feldspars would have turned to clay in the intervening years.

History Archaeological findings to the east and west indicate that humans settled in the area more than 10,000 years ago. Europeans arrived in the Australian Western Desert in the 1870s. Uluru and Kata Tjuta were first mapped by Europeans in 1872 during the expeditionary period made possible by the construction of the Australian Overland Telegraph Line. In separate expeditions, Ernest Giles and William Gosse were the first European explorers to this area. While exploring the area in 1872, Giles sighted Kata Tjuta from a location near Kings Canyon and called it Mount Olga, while the following year Gosse observed Uluru and named it Ayers Rock. Further explorations followed with the aim of establishing the possibilities of the area for pastoralism. In the late 1800s, pastoralists attempted to establish themselves in areas adjoining the South western/Petermann Reserve and interaction between Anangu and white people became more frequent and more violent. Due to the effects of grazing and drought, bush food stores became depleted. Competition for these resources created conflict between the two groups, resulting in more frequent police patrols. Later, during the depression in the 1930s, Anangu became involved in dingo scalping with 'doggers' who introduced Anangu to European foods and ways. Between 1918 and 1921, large adjoining areas of South Australia, Western Australia and Northern Territory were declared as Aboriginal reserves, sanctuaries for nomadic people who had virtually no contact with European settlers. In 1920, part of Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park was declared an Aboriginal Reserve (commonly known as the South-Western or Petermann Reserve) by the Australian government under the Aboriginals Ordinance. The first tourists arrived in the Uluru area in 1936. Beginning in the 1940s, permanent European settlement of the area for reasons of the Aboriginal welfare policy and to help promote tourism of Uluru. This increased tourism prompted the formation of the first vehicular tracks in 1948 and tour bus services began early in the following decade. In 1958, the area that would become the Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park was excised from the Petermann Reserve; it was placed under the management of the Northern Territory Reserves Board and named the Ayers Rock - Mount Olga National Park. The first ranger was Bill Harney, a well-recognised central Australian figure. By 1959, the first motel leases had been granted and Eddie Connellan had constructed an airstrip close to the northern side of Uluru. On 26 October 1985, the Australian government returned ownership of Uluru to the local Pitjantjatjara Aborigines, with one of the conditions being that the Anangu would lease it back to the National Parks and Wildlife agency for 99 years and that it would be jointly managed. The Aboriginal community of Mutitjulu, population of approximately 300, is located near the western end of Uluru. From Uluru it is 17 km (11 mi) by road to the tourist town of Yulara, population 3,000, which is situated just outside of the national park. Kata Tjuta National Park is owned and run by the local Aboriginals. The Australian government handed ownership of the land back to the Aboriginals some years ago.

Uluru has many caves, some decorated with rock art depicting Dreamtime myths dating back thousands of years.

The Caves The caves in Uluru can be both engaging and enlightening. To truly experience the power of Ayers Rock, your journey should be more than a few hours. Take your time to absorb the history of the springs, caves, and ancient paintings throughout the formation and don't worry about running your business . The first Aboriginal settlers arrived there more than 10,000 years ago and created a historical journey that would be difficult to transverse overnight so the recommendation for any tourists traveling to the formation has always been to allow more time to absorb the area without being distracted.

It has also been argued that " That's All Right (Mama) " (1954), Elvis Presley 's first single for Sun Records in Memphis , could be the first rock and roll record, [30] but, at the same time, Big Joe Turner 's " Shake, Rattle & Roll ", later covered by Haley, was already at the top of the Billboard R&B charts . Other artists with early rock and roll hits included Chuck Berry , Bo Diddley , Fats Domino , Little Richard , Jerry Lee Lewis , and Gene Vincent . [27] Soon rock and roll was the major force in American record sales and crooners , such as Eddie Fisher , Perry Como , and Patti Page , who had dominated the previous decade of popular music, found their access to the pop charts significantly curtailed. [31]

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