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Angkerle / Standley Chasm

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Standley Chasm Info
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West MacDonnell Range

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Angkerle / Standley Chasm - Cities, Towns and Localities
Located 50 km by sealed road from Alice Springs, Standley Chasm has been gouged from tough sandstone by the floods that, over untold millions of years, have surged down a narrow tributary of the Finke River system. The result is a deep red cleft, with slopes on either side rising 80 metres above the floor. Regardless of the weather or time of day, the Chasm is at its most dramatic an hour either side of noon on a sunny day. It is at noon that the desert sun is perfectly aligned, drenching Standley Chasm in a shower of brilliant red light, the sheer walls glowing from the reflected sunlight to create a breath-taking display.

Walking along the track that links the carpark to the Chasm, you are following a creek where spring-fed pools attract a great variety of wildlife, especially birds. It is thanks to the water that the gully floor is lush with plants that range from delicate ferns to tall gums; including many other species such as the cycad palm that have survived here from a long-gone era that was much wetter. This 20 minute walk (one-way) is quite easy, but it is recommended that you wear sensible shoes.

Standley Chasm is located in a private flora and fauna reserve owned by the Iwupataka Land Trust. All native plants and animals are protected. Do not pat the dingoes.

Called Angkerle by the Aborigines, the Chasm’s European name honours Mrs Ida Standley who in 1914, became the first school teacher in Alice Springs. In 1925, the school for children of Aboriginal descent was moved from Alice Springs to Jay Creek (Iwupataka) with Mrs Standley as matron. It was during her time at Jay Ceeek that she became the first non-Aboriginal women to visit the feature that now bears her name.

Angkerle / Standley Chasm

Set among shady trees on the creek bank, the Standley Chasm kiosk offers refreshments, snacks, meals and souvenirs (that include a variety of Aboriginal Art and souvenirs). There are also picnic areas, barbecues and other facilities. Check out our images of Standley Chasm.

Information Centre

Angkerle / Standley Chasm
Iwupataka Land Trust
Ph: 08 8956 7440
Gates open
(no entry after 5 pm)
8 am - 6 pm
Entry subject to a small fee
Hours may vary, contact visitor centre

Central Australian Visitor Information Centre - Alice Springs

Angkerle / Standley Chasm Walks

A popular time to see Standley Chasm is between 11 am and 1 pm. It is during this period that that you have the best chance to see the cathedral high walls of the chasm glow red from the sun's reflections.

It is approximately a 15 minute walk into the chasm along a creek bed filled with cycads, ferns, river red gums and other native flora.

Please note the signage that persons entering on these walking tracks do so at their own risk. There are a number of walks that incorporate Standley Chasm:

  • Main Chasm Walk • Easy —  30 minutes return
    The main chasm walk is an easy 30 minutes return that follow Angkala Creek from Northern end of the car park.
  • Second Chasm Walk • Medium — 1 hour return
    Turn left at far end of main chasm and follow creekbed a further 300 metres. Return by the same route.
  • Larapinta Hill • Hard — 45 minutes return
    Sign posted trail leaves main chasm track. Steep ascent up gully to lookout and return by same route.
  • Loop Walk • Medium — 1 hour return
    Follow sign posted trail from southern side of kiosk. Returns along main road.

Source: Signage at Standley Chasm

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