Heading west from the desert plains in Morocco the landscape abruptly cleaves into sheer gorges. Towns perch precariously on the sides and in the valleys shaded by lush date palmeries. The valley floor is a slice of bright green contrasting against the monochromatic rock and is striped with rows of crops either side of the life-giving thread of silver water. Simply lounging on a terrace here, watching the birds soaring in the sky or reading a book, is a grand way to pass a day. Another invigorating option is to wander down to the public Hamam baths with the locals for a chat and a traditional scrub with black soap made from olives.
The Kennedy Ranges is a stark mesa, some 75km long and 25km wide, rising dramatically out of the surrounding desert landscape. The arid climate combined with a millennia of erosion, has resulted in sparse, half strangled vegetation desperately vying to get a foothold in the rubble which gives the place a post apocalyptic feel. This really is the wild west of WA.
Visiting the Gawler Ranges will take you back in time to the days of pastoralism; remnants of historic homesteads, shearing sheds and broken down farm fences can be found throughout the park. The sheep have also left their mark with much of the native vegetation cleared to make way for well trodden paddocks, exposing the vivid granite coloured soils that sleep below. The open plains make it easier to appreciate the local wildlife, such as kangaroos bounding across the landscape and groups of wedge-tailed eagles circling overhead.