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Climbing Tales #6 Minga Comedian

Climbing Tales 
This series celebrates Uluru climbing experiences posted online.

Base of the Climb

A wonderful Climbing Tale from Fred Reiss, Californian stand up comedian. Fred Climbed in 2015 following treatment for cancer. This is another inspiring story that the ignoramuses that sit on the Park Board and Parks Australia, happy to keep them in their cultural dungeon, want to prevent. 

A brief extract below, for the full story follow the links to Fred's Blog.

Why I believe you should climb Uluru and why I climbed it!
It was intimidating to be a weathered and coarse-grained, testicle-stripped 59-year old man standing within the end and beginning of my dream track at the foot of The Climb. Dreamtime is where you develop a worldly knowledge accumulated through ancestors—well, there’s no hare wallaby man in my family’s ancestral history. But, now that I think of it, my ex-brother-in-law might have been one.  And songline is dreaming a path which mark the route followed by localized "creator-beings ”across the land or sometimes the sky—well I flew Economy on Qantas.). And now, here I was at my Uluru.
What made me decide to go full-on minga and ignore the tribal pleas not to climb it? I dialled back to where I experienced a different climb, standing before the Infusion Clinic’s doors faced with a choice going through them to live or walking away to die. If I didn’t climb Uluru, an inside-out void would define me for the rest of my life. A spirit needed to fill me. I didn’t know what it was, but I knew it was somewhere up that slope, hovering beyond me, and I had to be there to meet it. Uluru belongs to anyone who wants to become part of it. Why turn it into an aboriginal members-only Mecca?  A cultural pamphlet stated “the climbing route is a sacred path of spiritual significance that is only taken by few Aboriginal men on special occasions.” Well, this walkabout in dreamtime is a special songline occasion. Last time I checked we are all on Earth. We’re all indigenous. I’m a “localized creator-being” too!  And now, it’s my turn.
The inspirational Minga: Fred Reiss

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A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers Rock

A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers RockIt's too dangerous Group of women aged 19-70 climb Ayers Rock as part of the 1957 Petticoat Safari. This was prior to the chains being installed. Since the 1950s over 6,000,000 people of all ages have climbed the rock. In that time there have been a reported 36 deaths mainly heart attacks to older men, not acclimatised to the heat of central Australia. If you are fit and healthy and stick to the marked path climbing Ayers Rock is an exhilarating adventure but a decidedly low risk activity.

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Various writers have described Ayers Rock as difficult of ascent, when in reality it is a trained mountaineer's job on the east-south-east corner, a rough and steep scramble up at least two places on its southern side, and nothing else but a strenuous and spectacular uphill walk on its western side It’s a Sacred Site, climbing is disrespect…

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Claims that Aborigines never ascend the monolith are false and the highly sacred nature of the route a recent invention. The cultural-heritage significance of the climb to both Anangu and millions of non-Aboriginal visitors is something that should be celebrated and maintained, not discouraged and condemned.

Read the Article at Quadrant.
“In the realm of ideas there has been no better publication in Australia over the last fifty years than Quadrant magazine.”
— Former Prime Minister John Howard