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Street in Amata looking towards the Musgrave Ranges.

Community Arts Centre

Evening on the Musgrave Ranges behind Amata.

On Amata town

Around the last corner and the last car, lies the township itself. A pack of semi-feral dingo-like dogs follows my car. The footpaths are red dust. Houses have barred windows, and grubby children play in the street while a wild boar grubs about in the backyard. This place feels like grim poverty, yet the back-drop of the Musgrave Ranges lends it an air of rugged beauty.

I dream of exploring the ranges. But dream it shall remain for now, unaccustomed as I am to the sweltering heat and complete absence of water. Tap water here is obtained from wells, and has an unusual milky pallor and unpleasant taste. I admire the resilience of local anangu, the Pitjantjatjara people, who live and work in this remote desert country every day. And I appreciate the opportunity to visit this place.

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A wild boar in the backyard.

On Amata Town

On Amata Town

Classy recycling bins in desert-flower shades of purple…

Beauty in the sand country

Desert flowers.