How much of Uluru is underground?

The immense red rock of Uluru is unmistakable and famed, undoubtedly one of the most recognisable landmarks in the entire world. However, one fact that still leaves visitors shocked is that this looming structure is mostly hidden from eyesight, with a hefty amount of the rock buried underground.

The Formation of Uluru

The formation of Uluru began around 500 million years ago, around the same time the continent of Australia formed. It first formed underwater, manifesting between with two fans, with one made up of sand and the other composed of conglomerate rock. The movement of the land plates created a large amount of pressure between these two fans, eventually resulting in the two to condense into Arkose, which is a coarse sandstone rock. The water slowly dried up, leaving behind a large expanse of land with a massive structure looming above which we know today as Uluru. Uluru is composed of Arkose, which is a coarse sandstone.

The Indigenous People’s Storytime

Australia is home to the Aboriginal people, the oldest continuous culture on Earth. Uluru is a very significant part of indigenous culture and history. Their explanation on the formation of Uluru begins with their 10 ancestral beings during Dreamtime creating the rock by numerous occasions. Just a few examples include the southern area of Uluru being created due to the war between the poisonous and carpet snakes. The north-west side of Uluru was created by the hare people, otherwise known as Mala. The aboriginal people see Ayers Rock as a living cultural landscape and is especially sacred to the Yankunytjatjara and Pitjantjatjara people. They consider this structure a dwelling for past spirits to reside in.

The Structure of Uluru

Today Uluru stands 348m above ground, being the most dominant structure within the desert outback. Stretching up 348 metres high, the rock spans 3.6 kilometres long and 1.9 kilometres wide. However, a large majority of the structure is still hidden underground, with 2.5 kilometres of its bulk stretching downwards.

Check out our Uluru Sunrise and Kata Tjuta from Ayers Rock now!

 

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