© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

Robyn’s three adult camels carried the supplies necessary for her, and their, survival. Each morning she loaded 230kg of gear onto the animals. In the early days it took her over two hours to load the camels.

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

National Geographic turned Robyn down the first time she wrote asking them for support. But Rick urged her to try again. Her persuasive letter convinced 
the magazine to provide the $4000 she needed to fund her trek.


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

Uluru (Ayers Rock) attracts thousands of tourists every year. The painted white line is designed to keep tourists from falling off the edge of the rock. 

At 348m high and 9.4km in 
circumference, Uluru (Ayers Rock) is the world's largest single rock, and a sacred site for the Pitjantjatjara and Lowitja tribes.


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

Robyn and her camels explore a cave on the side of Uluru (Ayers Rock).

Treacherous surfaces such as this rain soaked creek bed are dangerous for camels. Walking to Docker River through this rainstorm, Dookie slipped and crashed to the ground.


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

When it’s 43 degrees in the shade in Warburton, the dripping end of a pipe is the best place to hang out. The only danger is falling into the cattle watering hole below.

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

The camels treated Robyn as the leader of their herd and, while she appreciated their affection, sometimes it felt like being nuzzled by a 650kg dog. 


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

Aboriginal children play on a makeshift landing strip before the weekly mail plane arrives

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

Robyn and her Kelpie dog Digitty (who she rescued from an animal testing lab as a puppy) drink from a watering hole in the Olgas ranges.


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

The camels were thunderstruck at the sight of the Indian Ocean. Goliath went straight in for a swim. 

 

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

What appeared to be floating rocks in Hamelin Pool turned out to be Stromatolites, living algae considered to be one of the oldest forms of life on earth. 


© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

© 2014 Rick Smolan/ Against All Odds Productions II

As was true everywhere she went, the Aboriginal children in Docker River greeted Robyn (who they called "the camel lady") with tremendous excitement.