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Mount Sonder in the West MacDonnell Range
This is 'Albert Namatjira Country' - Like a wise old person, the mountain watches over an ever-changing desert landscape keeping the stories of an ancient Arrernte Aboriginal culture.

The fourth highest point in Central Australia, at 1,380 metres above sea level, Mount Sonder was named in honour of the German botanist Wilhelm Otto Sonder. To the local Western Arrernte Aboriginal People, the Mount Sonder area, or Rwetyepme (roo -  choop - ma), is criss-crossed with the tracks of their dreamtime ancestors. The main story for Rwetyepme is the Man / Euro (Hill Kangaroo) 'dreaming', told on signs at Redbank Gorge. Mount Sonder itself, also holds significance to the local Aboriginal People, the shape of the mountain is said to look like the profile of a pregnant women lying on her back, sometimes called the 'sleeping woman' by the Aboriginal people. The meaning and significance of the story is not revealed. The traditional landowners believe the Dreamtime ancestors are still alive in the land today and the mountain is engraved with their tracks.

Mount Sonder is also part of the world renowned Larapinta Trail. This ultimate adventure trek is a 223 kilometre trek, that takes the hiker along the spine of the West MacDonnell Ranges through some of the most dramatic landscape in Central Australia.

For those not scaling the peak of Mount Sonder, you can rise early to witness sunrise illuminate one of the highest peaks in the Red Centre. Be inspired by the same breathtaking country and mountain peak that inspired Namatjira's watercolours, and continue to inspire the region's artists. The colours on the face of Mount Sonder vary throughout the day, from a spectacular fiery red at sunrise to a deep purple in the early afternoon. It is these colours that were captured and made famous by the Arrernte watercolourist Albert Namatjira during the 1940s and 1950s.

Source: NT Parks and Wildlife Service park signage

Mount Sonder - Snapshots from Australia

Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
Mount Sonder / Rwetyepme © Dorothy Latimer
 
Photos © Dorothy Latimer

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