Victorian man Simon Day convicted for climbing Uluru

A Victorian man who illegally scaled Uluru has become the first person to be convicted since climbing the sacred rock was banned in 2019.

Yesterday Simon Day was found guilty in absence on two charges – walking or riding on a Commonwealth reserve and entering a restricted or prohibited area – in Alice Springs Local Court.

The 44-year-old was also fined $2,500.

Parks Australia, which jointly manages the national park with the Anangu traditional owners, welcomed the decision.

“The director of National Parks takes the protection of sacred sites very seriously,” a spokesperson said.

“Uluru has great spiritual significance to Anangu and is a significant part of Tjukurpa (customary law).

“Tjukurpa requires that Anangu take responsibility for looking after their sacred sites and visitors to their country.

“Traditional owners have a cultural responsibility to look after the Uluru rock formation and the surrounding park area.”

Tourists flocked to climb the rock before the ban came into effect.(ABC News: Rick Hind)

The spokesperson said the national park was regularly patrolled to ensure compliance with the climbing ban.

In 2017 the board of the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park voted unanimously to disallow climbing because of the spiritual significance of the site.

Uluru against blue skies dotted with cloud.
Simon Day was absent from court.(ABC News: Neda Vanovac)

The decision attracted some opposition, with thousands of tourists racing to climb the rock in the weeks leading up to its closure.

It is estimated more than 35 people have died on Uluru since tourists began ascending it via a steep track during the 1930s.

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