Coordinates: 24°52′27″S 129°05′01″E / 24.87417°S 129.08361°E / -24.87417; 129.08361
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Kaltukatjara (Docker River)
Northern Territory
Kaltukatjara (Docker River) is located in Northern Territory
Kaltukatjara (Docker River)
Kaltukatjara (Docker River)
Coordinates24°52′27″S 129°05′01″E / 24.87417°S 129.08361°E / -24.87417; 129.08361
Population355 (2006 census)[1]
LGA(s)Central Land Council
Territory electorate(s)Namatjira
Federal division(s)Lingiari
Mean max temp Mean min temp Annual rainfall
37.2 °C
99 °F
6.8 °C
44 °F
284.2 mm
11.2 in

Kaltukatjara (Kaḻṯukatjara) is a town in the southwest of the Northern Territory of Australia. It is also called Docker River in English. It is about 670 km southwest of Alice Springs, and 8 km from the border with Western Australia.[2][3] In the 2006 census, Kaltukatjara had a population of 355.[1] All of the residents are either Pitjantjatjara, Ngaatjatjarra or Ngaanyatjarra Aboriginal people.[4]

Overview[change | change source]

Kaltukatjara is located on the western bank of an ephemeral watercourse called Docker River. It is surrounded by the Petermann Ranges.[3] From the town, the Great Central Road leads eastward to Yulara (196 km) and westward to Warburton (288 km).

While the roads in the town are sealed, roads out of the town are gravel and can be closed for up to a week if it rains. There is an air strip about 4 km north of the town. Power is supplied by three large generators. The water supply is pumped from two underground bores which are about 5 km from the town. Facilities in Kaltukatjara includes both a primary and secondary school, a health clinic, community store, and an old people's home.[2] There is also a Lutheran church.[4]

History[change | change source]

Kaltukatjara was originally established as an outstation in 1968.[5] It was established so that the Aboriginal people living in missions such as Areyonga could live closer to their homelands.[3][4] It was also to encourage people to move out of the Ayers Rock–Mt Olga National Park.[6] The settlement was named "Docker River" after the stream that flows through the community. This stream was given its name by the explorer Ernest Giles when he travelled through the area in 1872.[2]

In 1976, the Aboriginal Land Rights Act was passed in the Northern Territory. The Kaltukatjara community was given freehold title over a large block of land in the Territory's southwest corner (see Petermann Aboriginal Land Trust). This allowed families living at Kaltukatjara to spread out over the surrounding country and set up smaller camps on their own ancestral homelands. This movement was part of a larger trend called the "outstation movement". The first two outstations established were Tjuntinanta and Punritjanta. By the end of 1978, a total of 11 outstations had been established. There were 16 by the end of 1981.[5]

Cultural history[change | change source]

The area in which Kaltukatjara is located is known as Kikingkura.[7][note 1] It contains several old sacred sites associated with the Wintalyka Tjukurpa (Mulga Seed Dreaming).[3][8] Part of this Tjukurpa, which is restricted to men, extends east through Uluṟu, where the Wintalyka men became involved in a feud with the Mala people.[9] According to the legend, the Mala had travelled from the north to perform ceremonies at Uluṟu with a sacred artefact. On learning of this artefact, the Wintalyka men invited the Mala men to attend ceremonies at Kikingkura, but the Mala refused. Feeling insulted, the Wintalyka decided to punish the Mala by conjuring an evil spirit to haunt them.[10] At Pulpaiyala, a soakage close to what is now Kaltukatjara,[7] they conjured kurpany, a great and terrifying spirit resembling a dingo.[note 2] Kurpany chased the Mala men from Uluṟu and off across the desert to the south.[9][11]

Outstations[change | change source]

Kaltukatjara is governed by Kaḻṯukatjara Community Council, a local government council with 12 members.[4] The community also serves about 30 outstations, most of which are not permanently occupied. They are spread over a large area around the Petermann Ranges.[12] Only two outstations are funded by the council: Tjauwata, about 5 km to the east, and Kunapula, about 46 km southeast.[2] Most of the outstations on the eastern side of the border are owned by Pitjantjatjara families. Those in Western Australia are mostly owned by Ngaanyatjarra people.[5]

Main surrounding outstations
Outstation Est. Distance from Kaltukatjara Coordinates Notes
Amputjuta 1978 11 km (6.8 mi) south 24°55′S 129°7′E / 24.917°S 129.117°E / -24.917; 129.117 (Amputjuta) Located on the banks of the Docker River, in the Learmonth Park catchment area.
Eagle Valley ? 7 km (4.3 mi) south 24°55′S 129°5′E / 24.917°S 129.083°E / -24.917; 129.083 (Eagle Valley) Located near the banks of the Docker River, in the Learmonth Park catchment area.
Kulang 1984 20 km (12 mi) north 24°42′S 129°0′E / 24.700°S 129.000°E / -24.700; 129.000 (Kulang) Also known as "Kulail". Located on the banks of the Docker River, where it passes through the Bloods Range and into Western Australia.
Kunapula 1978 46 km (29 mi) south 25°9′S 129°14′E / 25.150°S 129.233°E / -25.150; 129.233 (Kunapula)
Kurkatingara 1983 65 km (40 mi) south 25°16′S 129°10′E / 25.267°S 129.167°E / -25.267; 129.167 (Kurkatingara) Located on the track south towards Kalka.
Kutjuntari 1979 40 km (25 mi) southwest 24°55′S 128°48′E / 24.917°S 128.800°E / -24.917; 128.800 (Kutjuntari) Also written as "Kutjurntari". Located in Western Australia, near to Gill Pinnacle and where the highway crosses Rebecca Creek. Belongs to Ngaanyatjarra people.
Mantapayika ? 200 km (120 mi) southeast 25°28′S 130°13′E / 25.467°S 130.217°E / -25.467; 130.217 (Mantapayika)
Mantarur ? 210 km (130 mi) southeast 25°35′S 130°13′E / 25.583°S 130.217°E / -25.583; 130.217 (Mantarur) Also written as "Mantarurr" or "Mantaru". Located at a rockhole in the western slopes of Butler Dome and Foster Cliff.
Mulga Green ? 60 km (37 mi) southeast 25°15′S 129°25′E / 25.250°S 129.417°E / -25.250; 129.417 (Mulga Green)
Oondaloo ? 4 km (2.5 mi) west 24°53′S 129°3′E / 24.883°S 129.050°E / -24.883; 129.050 (Oondaloo) Also written as "Undooloo". Located just outside town, in the valley between the Hope and Dean Ranges.
Petalu 1981 100 km (62 mi) southeast 25°15′S 129°30′E / 25.250°S 129.500°E / -25.250; 129.500 (Petalu) Also written as "Pitalu" or "Petjalu".
Pilakatal 1981 130 km (81 mi) southeast 25°21′S 129°48′E / 25.350°S 129.800°E / -25.350; 129.800 (Pilakatal) Located in the southern end of the Pottoyu Hills, near the Armstrong Creek.
Pirrulpakalarintja 1983 200 km (120 mi) southeast 25°18′S 130°6′E / 25.300°S 130.100°E / -25.300; 130.100 (Pirrulpakalarintja) Also written as "Pirurpakalarintja" or "Pimpakalarinytja".
Punritjanta 1976 31 km (19 mi) northeast 24°40′S 129°17′E / 24.667°S 129.283°E / -24.667; 129.283 (Punritjanta) Located on the banks of the Hull River, where it passes through the Bloods Range.
Puta Puta 1977 70 km (43 mi) southeast 25°4′S 129°38′E / 25.067°S 129.633°E / -25.067; 129.633 (Puta Puta) Also written as "Putaputa". An old soakage located near to where the highway crosses the Chirnside Creek.[7]
Tjauwata ? 5 km (3.1 mi) southeast 24°54′S 129°7′E / 24.900°S 129.117°E / -24.900; 129.117 (Tjauwata) Also written as "Tjawata" or "Tjanwata". Located at the catchment delta of the Docker River, on the south side of the gap in the Dean Range.
Tjunti 1977 38 km (24 mi) east 25°1′S 129°24′E / 25.017°S 129.400°E / -25.017; 129.400 (Tjunti) Located on the banks of the Hull River, between the Mannanana and Curdie Ranges.
Tjuntinanta 1976 15 km (9.3 mi) east 24°51′S 129°13′E / 24.850°S 129.217°E / -24.850; 129.217 (Tjuntinanta) Located off the north side of the highway, on the banks of the Hull River.
Urilpila 1984 130 km (81 mi) southeast 25°13′S 130°4′E / 25.217°S 130.067°E / -25.217; 130.067 (Urilpila) Located on the banks of the Armstrong Creek, south of the highway.
Walka 1979 40 km (25 mi) south 25°1′S 129°11′E / 25.017°S 129.183°E / -25.017; 129.183 (Walka) Located on the banks of Giles Creek.
Walu 1984 41 km (25 mi) northeast 24°44′S 129°31′E / 24.733°S 129.517°E / -24.733; 129.517 (Walu) Located on the track northeast towards the Bloods Range.
Wangkari 1977 46 km (29 mi) south 25°7′S 129°1′E / 25.117°S 129.017°E / -25.117; 129.017 (Wangkari) Also written as "Wankari". Located on the banks of Giles Creek.
Warapura 1977 50 km (31 mi) southwest 24°54′S 128°44′E / 24.900°S 128.733°E / -24.900; 128.733 (Warapura) Also written as "Warrapura". Located in Western Australia, southwest of Gill Pinnacle. On Ngaanyatjarra land.
Wataru ? 4 km (2.5 mi) west 24°51′S 129°3′E / 24.850°S 129.050°E / -24.850; 129.050 (Wataru) Also written as "Wataroo". Located just outside town, off the north side of the highway.
Main sources for the statistics: [5][13]

Footnotes[change | change source]

  1. Also spelled Kikingura, Kikingurra or Kikinkura.[7]
  2. The name of the spirit has also been known as kurrpannga, kurrpanngu, kulpunya or kuapunn.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Kaltukatjara (Docker River) (L) (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Kaltukatjara / Docker River – MacDonnell Shire". macdonnell.nt.gov.au. 2012. Archived from the original on 10 April 2013. Retrieved 29 October 2012.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Ian Howie-Willis (1994). "Docker River". In David Horton (ed.). The Encyclopaedia of Aboriginal Australia: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, society and culture. Vol. 1. Canberra: Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. p. 296. ISBN 978-0-85575-249-1.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Community Profile: Kaltukatjarra" (PDF). Darwin: General Practice Network, Northern Territory. 1 October 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 April 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Scott Cane; Owen Stanley (1985). Land Use and Resources in Desert Homelands. Darwin: Australian National University, North Australia Research Unit. pp. 107–112. ISBN 0867847662.
  6. Chatty, Dawn; Colchester, Marcus (2002). Conservation and mobile indigenous peoples: displacement, forced settlement, and sustainable development. Berghahn Books. p. 365. ISBN 978-1-5718-1841-6.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Robert Layton (1986), Uluru: an Aboriginal history of Ayers Rock, Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, pp. 123–124, ISBN 978-0-85575-161-6
  8. William Edward Harney (1963). To Ayers Rock and Beyond. Robert Hale Limited. pp. 175–180. ISBN 978-1-8628-0003-8.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Noel M. Wallace (1990). "European Domination and Cultural Confusion: forced change among the Pitjantjatjara". In Robert Tonkinson; Michael Howard; Ronald Berndt; Catherine Berndt (eds.). Going it Alone?: Prospects for Aboriginal Autonomy. Aboriginal Studies Press. p. 94. ISBN 978-0-85575-211-8.
  10. Ken Crispin (2013). The Chamberlain Case: The Legal Saga that Transfixed the Nation. Scribe Publications. p. 8. ISBN 978-1-921942-86-0.
  11. Charles W. Moore; William J. Mitchell and William Turnbull, Jr. (1993). The Poetics of Gardens. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. p. 53. ISBN 978-0-262-63153-2.
  12. "Central Australian Health Planning Study" (PDF). Plan Health Pty Ltd. July 1997. p. 78–79.
  13. Dick L. Japanangka; Pam Nathan (1983). Settle Down Country / Mere Arltyewele. Alice Springs: Central Australian Aboriginal Congress. pp. 138–140. ISBN 978-0-908150-05-2.

Other websites[change | change source]