Annual rainfall averages 284.2 millimetres.
The residents are mainly Anangu people who speak mainly Pitjantjatjara as their first language.
Pipalyatjara was formerly known as Mount Davies, named after the tallest local peak.
Chrysoprase was mined at Pipalyatjara until recently.
Pipalyatjara has an airstrip (to which mail is delivered twice a week) and a health facility staffed by 2 nurses, with a doctor from Fregon making regular visits. There are council facilities.
Diesel power generation facilities supply power to the community.
Water is provided from 2 bores and placed in storage tanks for pumping to the community.
The Pipalyatjara Anangu school is a CPC - Year 11 school. Some of the school population come from the Kalka Community, which is situated approximately 15 km from Pipalyatjara. As with the successful programs implemented first at Mimili in October 2006 and Amata in 2007, a swimming pool is proposed for construction at Pipalyatjara with construction to begin in March 2007. The rationale for construction of swimming pools is both to improve public health through the chemicals in the water and regular bathing, but also the incentive to enjoy the facility serving as encouragement to improve school attendance.
Technical and Further Education ("TAFE" for short) opportunities are provided to the community.
There is also a general store supplied fortnightly via road train.
The Pipalyatjara Women's Complex also functions as a community recreation hall.
The community runs the Ninuku Arts project.
Pipalyatjara has a mechanic workshop to service local vehicles and educate young residents.
Pipalyatjara does not have a permanent police presence. South Australia Police are based at Marla and run patrols in the area. There is a rudimentary shed structure that serves as a police station when police are present. The community is served in the absence of SA Police with 2 community constables.
The Uniting Church in Australia has a congregation in Pipalyatjara.
A mobile polling booth visits Pipalyatjara every 4 years for elections of the Parliament of South Australia.