Jorge Basave grew up in Mexico City and moved to Australia in 2006. He is a passionate environmental and community development advocate and has spent his career working in NGOs across Mexico and Australia. He currently works for the Jesuit Social Services. After studying an MA in Environmental Management, Jorge had plans to move back to Mexico but the beauty of the Australian landscape, people and lifestyle have kept him here. Jorge is an avid camper and has camped across Central Australia in the MacDonnell Ranges, Palm Valley, Ross River, Harts Range, Kings Canyon, Tennant Creek and many more places in between. He has a hidden talent and can play a decent tune using his hands as a flute!
View some of Jorge’s experiences in this short 30 second television commercial airing on Imparja, GO and GEM.
Get to know Jorge in this extended 2 minute web version and learn about her adventure experiences in the Red Centre featuring motorcycling and bike riding.
Jorge's Letter to Adventurers!
Coming from a city of 20 million people to a town of 28 thousand, my journey here to Alice Springs includes growing up in Mexico City, working five years on environmental projects in the Mexican Caribbean, living and studying in Sydney, and then for the past three years working in community development alongside one of the oldest cultures in the world.
After arriving in Sydney to study a Masters degree almost a decade ago, I feel that Australia and Mexico are now both home to me. And although worlds apart, both countries are equally diverse in nature and culture, with many hidden treasures. In the Mexican Caribbean I used to dive through underground caverns created by prehistoric events and a fluctuation in sea levels. I was equally amazed to discover majestic primordial cycads and the marks of a vast and ancient inland ocean while hiking in Watarrka National Park, right in the middle of the Australian continent.
My fascination with Central Australia started in 2009 with a campervan road trip, giving me my first chance to experience the magic of the desert and its incredible and colourful rock formations. It was then I wished I had a better understanding of geology and the local cultures, to comprehend the language of these landscapes.
Trekking and driving through this scenery is incredible but if you really want to appreciate the vastness of the area then a scenic flight is the way to do it. A helicopter flight over Kings Canyon truly unravels the scale and composition of this environment and allows you to sense the millions of years that have shaped it. The fun starts from lift-off as you levitate and gracefully gain altitude over the gaping canyon, and with the setting sun extending its reach over the wide expanse you’ll discover a whole new palette of desert colours. This journey will remain forever as one of my favourites.
As you might expect in a city that houses the entire population of Australia, there aren’t too many opportunities to enjoy open spaces and infinite vistas in Mexico City. For this reason I make the most of Central Australia’s many walking trails, with their unrivalled vantage points of wide horizons. One of my favourite views is from the Ormiston Gorge Pound walk, which sometimes after rain includes the added adventure of crossing a flowing river and discovering flowers you never thought could exist in the desert. After an energetic walk, sleeping in a swag out in the open provides the perfect cosy platform for a night of stargazing in one of the world’s most renowned astronomy destinations.
Zigzagging on a quad bike through sandy riverbeds at KingsCreek Station is also a fun way to traverse the desert. I wasn’t too sure if I would enjoy riding on this machine, but I changed my mind right away as they are versatile, easy to drive and a unique way to explore the area with a local guide.
One of the things I truly enjoy is helping my Mexican friends and family discover Australia and visa versa. I find it strange how often you’ll find overseas visitors have explored more of Australia than its own inhabitants! Which is why I hope my story inspires some of you to embrace the unique and fascinating environment and culture we live amongst here in Central Australia.