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Title: W. C. Gosse's Explorations, 1873.
Author: W[illiam] C[hristie] Gosse.
* A Project Gutenberg of Australia eBook *
eBook No.: 1306451h.html
Language: English
Date first posted: November 2013
Date most recently November 2013

Produced by: Ned Overton.

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Production Notes:

This work includes an account of the first visit by whites to Uluru, and Gosse's naming it "Ayers Rock" on Saturday, 19 July, 1873.

The formats of bearings have been standardised. The map at the end of the work is from the State Records Office of Western Australia, Series 50 (Exploration Plans), Item 102.

Thanks to Viv Overton

Ayers Rock.




Ordered by the House of Assembly to be printed, 2nd June, 1874.


February 1st, 1874.

Sir—I have the honor to enclose, for the information of the Honorable the Commissioner of Crown Lands and Immigration, diary and map of my exploration, also to report that leaving the Alice Springs, April 21st, with a party consisting of four white men, three Affghans, and a black boy, I travelled along the telegraph line to latitude 22° 28' S., about forty miles south of Central Mount Stuart.

From this point I followed the Reynolds Range about W.N.W. for forty-five miles; I was then obliged to turn S.W., passing a high bluff, piled by Major Warburton, and on to the western extremity of the MacDonnell Ranges (Giles's Mount Liebig).

Here I was compelled to turn south, crossing Mr. Giles's track several times, the eastern arm of his Lake Amadeus, and on to a high hill, east of Mount Olga, which I named Ayers Rock (I have given a full account of this wonderful feature, in my diary). The country to this point is chiefly sandy soil, densely timbered with mulga (a name given to small trees found numerous in the interior of Australia, a species of genus acacia, belonging to the natural order leguminosæ), or stretches of spinifex sandhills. In the vicinity of the lake the sandhills are higher, and very few small patches of mulga, nothing fit for occupation. I found a spring at Ayers's Rock—the first permanent water seen since leaving Alice Springs, but the good country very limited, not more than thirty square miles.

Proceeding west and south-west, I passed nothing worthy of note, until I reached high ranges on the northern boundary of South Australia (the Mann). The waters here, as far as I could judge, had every appearance of being permanent, and the country equal to anything in the north. This strip, about eight miles wide, extends to the boundary of Western Australia, and is well adapted for stock. From here to my furthest point, latitude 26° 32' S., longitude 126° 59' east, the country is poor, getting worse as I advanced, until I got clear of all ranges, and into spinifex and sandhills, and dense mulga flats, destitute of water. I was reluctantly obliged to commence my return on September 22nd, retracing my track to where I first struck the Mann Ranges, then along the south side, the same rich flats still continuing. From here, going east, I made the high range seen from Ayers's Rock, and named the Musgrave. There is a greater extent of good country in these ranges, averaging about twenty miles in width, and 100 long, but the waters getting scarce towards the eastern end. In latitude 26° 9' S., longitude 132° 50' E, I struck the head of a large creek, which turned out to be the Alberga. This is very badly watered, indeed from the east end of the Musgrave Ranges to the telegraph line, there is scarcely a water to be depended upon. This must always be a great drawback to the occupation of the good country. I found upon reaching the telegraph line, that this had been an exceptionally dry season—waters that were considered permanent, having been dry for months. It is impossible to say what alteration a good fall of rain might make, but I do not think a practicable route will ever be found between the lower part of Western Australia, and the telegraph line. I pushed my exploration as far west as I could, and when I commenced my return had barely sufficient stores left to carry party to telegraph line.

I have the honour, &c.
W. C. GOSSE, Leader of C. and W. Exploring Expedition.

To the Surveyor-General.

Forwarded to the Secretary, Crown Lands Office, for perusal of the Hon. Commissioner, with diary, plans, and specimens of roots and plants. From the specimens submitted, the country traversed appears to be mostly granitic, and to partake of the character of our desert, with oasis between, and where decomposition of mica and felspar has accompanied disentegration.

Although the expedition has not effected the passage to Perth, it has placed in possession of the Department, detail of over 60,000 square miles of country, and enabled the places named by Mr. Giles to be correctly laid down as to latitude and longitude. I can speak highly of the way in which the records have been kept, and of the admirably-constructed plans accompanying Mr. Gosse's journal.

G. W. GOYDER, Surveyor-General.

Government Central and Western Exploring Expedition,1873.

Wednesday, April 23.—Alice Springs. Started for the Reynolds Range. My party consisting of five whites, viz.:—Mr. Edwin Berry, second in command; Mr. Henry Gosse, collector; Henry Winnall, and Patrick Nilen; three Affghans—Kamran, Jemma Kahn, and Allanah; also a Peake {Page 2} black boy, "Moses." All in good spirits at getting started, after such a long stay at the MacDonnell Ranges. Only a short stage to-day, six miles to Todd Crossing.

Thursday, April 24.—Todd Crossing. Barometer 27.64 in; proceeded to Six Mile Creek, and camped on telegraph line.

Friday, April 25.—Six Mile Creek. Barometer 27.50; travelled to the Burt, nineteen miles. Here we saw Major Warburton's camel tracks, turning away westward. As there is no water in these wells, I shall take two camels to-morrow, and go as far as the Native well, there is every chance of that being dry, and the next water is sixty miles from here.

Saturday, April 26.—The Burt. Barometer 27.56; started at 7.30 a.m., taking Kamran and two camels. This is my first mount on one of these animals. Arrived at the Native well at 4 p.m.; found it quite dry, and no water to be obtained by digging. Travelled to east of telegraph line, along Hann's Ridge. At about three miles, near an old native camp, found a little water in a rocky gully. Camped near this.

Sunday, April 27.—Hann's Ridge. Barometer 27.60 in. Returned to camp. I shall have to push through to the Woodforde, sixty miles without water, and a sandy road.

Monday, April 28.—The Burt. Barometer 27.50 in. Sent waggon ten miles on the road. Teamster to bring horses back to water. Lat. 23° 12' 45° south.

Tuesday, April 29.—The Burt. Barometer 27.50 in. Started waggon horses at 7.30 a.m. Proceeded to Hann's Ridge. Found the water nearly dry. Camped. The waggon and camels travel along the road as fast as possible to the Woodforde.

Wednesday, April 30.—Hann's Ridge. Barometer 27.61 in. Proceeded to the Woodforde. Tried in several creeks without finding any water until we came to one about twenty-five miles from the Native well, which I suppose to be the Woodforde. Here we obtained some water by digging. Waggon and camels arrived just after sundown.

Thursday. May 1.—The Woodforde. Barometer 27.63 in.; wind south-east. Proceeded to the crossing of Woodforde. Found water by digging. I intend leaving telegraph line here as you instructed. Lat. 22° 28' 23" south.

Friday, May 2.—The Woodforde. Barometer 27.67 in.; wind south-east. Resting horses to-day after their long journey without water.

Saturday, May 3.—The Woodforde. Barometer 27.62 in.; wind east. Started at 8.30 a.m., taking my brother, and leasing Mr. Berry in charge of party. Course 266° 15' to a prominent point on the Reynolds Range, north of Mount Freeling. Crossed a branch of the Woodforde several times, and left it at three miles, coming from south-west at nine miles, top of hill. The country passed over is sandy, well grassed, and in places thickly timbered with mulga and acacia bushes. Finding I could proceed no further on this course on account of the roughness of the range changed to 5° for three and three quarter miles; then 346° for two miles. I then turned for the highest point upon this range, which I have named Mount Thomas. Bearing 289° crossed two small gum creeks, one at three and three quarters and another at five miles, running north. Country still sandy, but not so thickly timbered. Noticed some fine specimens of Stuart's bean-tree. Followed last creek a short distance, and camped; obtained water by digging.

Sunday May 4.—Gum Creek. Barometer 28.47 in. Continued same course as last evening eleven and half miles over similar country. Found I could proceed no further with the horses, the ground rising and getting very rough. Just before getting into the hills I saw two natives, but they ran away before we could speak to them. At five and a half miles crossed ridge dividing the waters that run into the Woodforde from those running west. Changed course to 344° at two and a half miles, Mount Thomas bears 233°, at five miles struck a large gum creek going north-east. Changed to 28° 15', struck creek again at half mile, changed to 4°, at three quarters of a mile, came upon the main creek, which appears to drain the whole of these ranges (dry sandy bed) continued for one and a quarter miles, then altered course to 295°, crossing main creek—which I have named the Lander—at one and a half miles; at four miles seeing a granite hill, change to it 313° 30'. crossed first channel of the Lander at a quarter of a mile, and the second at three quarters of a mile; one mile reached hill and camped.

Monday, May 5.—Granite Hill on the Lander. Barometer 27.53 in.; wind south, cloudy during the night. Started at 7.25 a.m. Course, 291° 45'. Crossed main creek, and followed it down through thick mulga and acacia bushes for four miles, where I struck a small gum creek from south by west, and followed it half a mile north to its junction with the Lander. I found some nice rock water holes on leaving the granite hill this morning, to which I intend bringing the camp. I shall then push out to look for some permanent water. This seems to be a very dry country; even in that which is well known along the telegraph line, there is not a waterhole that can be depended upon for more than 100 miles north of Alice Springs. Returned to my Saturday night's camp.

Tuesday, May 6.—Gum creek, flowing into the Woodforde. Barometer 27.55 in.; light wind from south. Started at 7.30 a.m., and reached camp on the Woodforde at 12 o'clock. Found all well.

Wednesday, May 7.—The Woodforde. Barometer 27.72 in.; wind south-east. Proceeded at 8 a.m.; only made a short stage, as it was the first day for waggon and camels off the track. The waggon makes it very easy work for the camels; in fact, I don't know how we should get through the thick mulga without cutting a road.

Thursday, May 8.—North of Reynolds Range. Barometer 27.50 in.; wind south-east. Still travelling to rock waterholes on the Lander.

Friday, May 9.—North of Reynolds Range. Barometer 27.47 in.; wind south-east. Arrived all safe at rock waterholes on the Lander.

Saturday, May 10.—The Lander.—Depôt No. 1. Barometer 37.10 [sic], latitude 25° 9' 5" S.; wind south. I shall ride over to a high point on the Reynolds Range, which I have named Mount Gardiner, and make another start on Monday. Bearing 250° at 2¾ miles, crossed small spinifex rise running parallel with main range, composed of mica slate; strike E., dip 80°; at 3 miles, small gum creek going north (stony bed) at 31 miles—another going north-east, 6½ miles top of Mount Gardiner; it is the most westerly point on this range, and 1,150 feet above the {Page 3} surrounding country, 2,760 feet above sea level. The view from here is very extensive. I could distinguish one very high point, which I suppose to be on Stuart's Bluff hills (or Hann's Ridge). The country to the west does not look very promising—mulga as far as the eye can see; a very high range north, which must be Stuart's Mount Leichardt; a high range on the horizon, not a hill of any description to the north-west. Top of range gneiss ridges, with sand-stone and mica slate on either side, bearing east-south-east, dip 70°. I instructed Winnall to sink a well at camp.

Sunday, May 11.—The Lander.—Depôt No. 1. Barometer 27.78, wind south-east.

Monday, May 12.—The Lander.—Depôt No. 1. Barometer 27.65 in., wind east. Started at 9 a.m., taking my brother and Mr. Berry; course, 281° 30'; at 3½ miles, small gum creek, (stony bed) going north-north-west; at six miles, low ridge bearing north, composed of mica slate; dip 75° north; strike east; gum creek going north-north-east, at 7 miles, and another at 81; at 11 miles, top of small spinifex hill, at the foot of a range I have named after Mr. Ernest Giles; this range runs north-west, and is composed of felspar on crown of ridge, with mica slate and sandstone; continued same course to 15¾ miles, when I struck a large gum creek coming from south-south-east; this I have named the Warburton, after Major Warburton; changed to 338° strike gap in the Giles Range, through which this creek runs; at four miles reached gap; another creek joins here from south-south-west; found two small waterholes in gap. After watering horses, proceeded on course 343° to junction of this creek with the Lander; at 2¼ miles camped. Country from Depôt to Giles range dense mulga scrub, poorly grassed; the rest not so thickly timbered, and open patches of spinifex.

Tuesday, May 13.—Junction of the Lander and Warburton; latitude 22° 0' 24". Barometer 27.97; wind light, from south-east. Proceeded along north side of Giles Range; course 297° 30'; for the first four miles, ground sandy, covered with spinifex, and timbered with white gums but soon changes to dense mulga scrub; at 10½ miles a low rise; from this I could see no sign of creek and nothing but dense mulga a-head, so I changed to a hill on the Giles Range, bearing 206° 30', 11 miles top; from this I could see black's fires in nearly every direction; to the north-west; the country has still the same level scrubby appearance. I shall now change to 236° 30', towards high hill I saw from Mount Gardiner; a great many fires in this direction; crossed two small gum creeks, with dry sandy beds, at 2½ and 3¼ miles, running north-west. Continued for fifteen miles over sandy and stony country, thickly timbered with mulga; also gums, and a few bean trees, open patches of spinifex, top of a small detached peak. I could see a creek south, so altered course to 177° to strike it, in the hope of finding water. At miles reached creek, bed dry and sandy, not a drop of water. The sun has been intensely hot, and the horses seem to suffer very much. Seeing some red-crested cockatoos, I named this Cockatoo Creek.

Wednesday, May 14.—Cockatoo Creek. Latitude, 22° 6' 15" south; barometer, 27.60; wind east. Followed creek down for six miles without seeing any sign of water. I sent my brother to follow it a short distance further, while I walked to the top of one of the small detached hills, of which there are a great number about here. Could see numbers of native fires. Finding no fresh signs of water in the creek, I started back for water in Giles Range Gap mulga scrub and spinifex the whole way. Horses suffered dreadfully; the one my brother was riding gave in altogether before reaching the water, and had to be left. I hope we shall be able to get it here to-morrow morning by taking some water. The poor brutes were fifty-one hours without water.

Thursday, May 15.—Gap in Giles Range. Barometer, 27.85. As soon as it was light I started back with my brother to where he left the horse; we found it not fifty yards from where it was left; it had been dead some hours. I find that horses will not go long without water in this country; the travelling is very heavy, and there seems but little nourishment in the grass. Returned to depôt to get fresh horses; found all well, and the well I had instructed them to dig only required sinking another three feet to make it a permanent water. Well is 200 yards W.S.W. of tree marked "GOS.I."

Friday, May 16.—The Lander Depôt No. 1. Barometer, 27.60 in. I intend sending two of the Affghans to follow the Lander for forty or fifty miles, to see which way it goes. Started in the afternoon for water found in Giles Range, taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. I shall make another attempt to get out as far as the high hill I saw from Mount Gardiner.

Saturday, May 17.—Gap in Giles Range. Barometer, 27.75; wind east. Proceeded to Cockatoo Creek, to where I returned from the last time, and followed it until I came to some native wells, but upon clearing out a large hole found very little water. I shall follow creek down some distance to-morrow. This is the driest country I have ever been in; it is as hot now during the day as it is in the summer in Adelaide.

Sunday, May 18.—Cockatoo Creek. Barometer, 27.63; wind east. After giving the horses the little water that had come into the wells during the night (about a bucket each), I followed creek down six miles, but it got worse instead of better; so I returned to my last night's camp, and proceeded on course 187° 30' for a detached hill; at five and a-half miles reached it, and near the foot found two small rock waterholes, with just sufficient water to enable me to look about in the morning.

Monday, May 19.—Small detached hill. Barometer, 27.58; wind east. Started at 7.45 a.m.; course, 257° 30'. At two miles (after looking about until 10 a.m.) found enough water for the horses in a rock hole; this will enable me to reach the range. Travelled along between two granite ridges (same course); at five miles crossed spur running N.W., and got into well grassed mulga scrub at fifteen miles (the last two miles very rough granite rocks) top of bill, which I have named Rock Hill; it is 720ft. above the plain. I was greatly disappointed at not finding water here; there is no sign of a creek of any size to be seen from the top. A fine range about fifty miles south, running west. To the west and south-west are a number of rough-looking ranges, but of no great height, and no creeks seem to come from them. I could just see a high hill, which must be near Mount Hay, and about 100 miles from here; also the high bluff on Stuart's Bluff Range. Camped at foot of hill.

Tuesday, May 20.—Foot of Rock Hill. Barometer, 27.43; wind east. I shall now {Page 4} ascertain if there is any water higher up in creeks from Giles Range; course, 93° for a high peak. At 7 miles, over sandy ground, abundantly grassed, got into a belt of thick mulga five miles wide; at fourteen miles small gum creeks going N. by E., in which I found plenty of water by digging; this is the first place we could have watered more than three horses at since leaving the Giles Range. Continued course between granite hills, which are only large masses of granite on the level plain, with no creeks; the water seems to run off them and soak into the ground. Noticed some pretty gum and bean trees growing about here. At twenty miles reached top of peak; named it Quartz Hill; it is 600ft. above surrounding country, composed of quartz and gneiss—strike, 270; dip, 66° south. Saw a native cat in the scrub to-day; I was not aware they were found so far north. Changed course to 92° 30' for Crown Hill; at two miles camped.

Wednesday, May 21.—Two miles east of Quartz Hill. Barometer 27.32 in.; wind, east. Proceeded at 7 a.m.; same course as last night (92° 30') at 13 miles, over firm stony ground, lightly timbered with acacia. Struck branch of west creek from Giles Range Gap, coming from south by west. At 17 miles and 19 from Quartz Hill reached top of Crown Hill, composed of coarse granite, Strike 270°. Dip 80° south; changed to point of Reynolds Range; course, 61° 30'. At 8 miles crossed the Warburton, going north-north-east (very dry-looking sandy bed). At 9 miles a branch of the Warburton, coming from south-east by east; here we found a fine, long water-hole, which appears to have been filled from some clay pans. Continued to point of range, 10½ miles, where we got into dense mulga and spinifex, which extended to edge of fiat near the Lander. Reached camp just after dark. Found all well; the Affghans returned, and the well finished.

Thursday, May 22.—The Lander Depôt, No. 1. Barometer 27.50 in.; wind, east. I shall move my camp to-morrow to water-hole I found yesterday. The Affghans, Kamran and Jemma Kahn followed the Lander for two days; Kamran made a very good plan of where they had been. They found some nice rock water-holes about one mile from west point of range on which Mount Leichardt is situated. The Lander bears north about 30 miles from here, and has a great many channels, and is one mile wide. One of my horses run a mulga stake into its leg to-day.

Friday, May 23.—The Lander Depôt, No. 1. Barometer 27.53 in.; wind, east. Proceeded to water-hole west of Mount Gardiner. Soon after arriving we saw two natives, but could not get within speaking distance of them. We heard a great many more talking during the afternoon, but they did not show themselves. It is astonishing what large trees they can cut down with their flints which which are fixed in the end of the "woomera" that they use for throwing their spears. It looked very much like rain towards night, but we had only a slight shower. We had a great deal of trouble getting lame horse over to-day.

Saturday, May 24.—Depôt No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.66 in.; latitude 22° 9' 52" south; wind north-east. A nice shower in the night, but I'm afraid it will not leave any water even in the rock bole.

Sunday, May 25.—Depôt No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.65.

Monday, May 26.—Depôt No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27 in.; wind east. Started at 8 a.m. (taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party) for Crown Hill. From there proceeded on course 215° 20', in direction of the Bluff before mentioned. At four miles crossed low rise; at six miles small gum creek going north-east; at eleven miles top of a granite ridge from which the branches of Cockatoo Creek take their rise, as also a branch of the Warburton. This ridge bears south-east. Dip, 79; strike east. Descended to south, and after passing several lose rises we got into a well-grassed mulga scrub; soil, sandy. At twenty-four miles camped.

Tuesday, May 27—Camp in mulga scrub. Barometer, 27.55 in.; wind east. Started at 7.40 a.m. same course (215° 20') for twenty miles, still over well-grassed scrub country with patches of spinifex. Changed here to a low place in Bluff Range bearing 172° 30'. At five miles foot of hills, leaving my brother here with the horses, which had been two days without water, I proceeded on foot in search of some. After two and a-half hour's walk over extremely rough ground I discovered some water in a rocky gully two miles from where I had left my brother. It was a terribly rough place to approach; however, we succeeded in watering the horses. It was not so easy to get out again as it was now quite dark, only relieved by occasional flashes of lightning. It occupied us until 8 p.m., and I should have been very sorry to retrace my steps by daylight. Commenced raining at 9 p.m.

Wednesday, May 28.—Foot of Bluff Range. Barometer, 27.60 in.; wind, north-east. It rained steadily nearly the whole night; very heavy showers this morning. The weather, however, cleared a little in the afternoon, and I made a start at 1.15 p.m.; managed to get 16 miles by sundown, the horses bogging at every step. We were obliged to camp without water for the horses, as, owing to the sandy nature of the ground, the rain is absorbed as quickly as it falls, Heavy showers the whole way, and a steady rain set in at 6 p.m.

Thursday, May 29.—Camp in scrub. Barometer, 27.62 in.; wind, north. Rained all night, and continued until nine o'clock when we made a start with everything soaking wet, but not a drop of water for the horses; by sundown we reached the granite ridge we passed on our way out, having been obliged to walk and lead our horses the greater part of the way. Found plenty of water north of ridge. Camped at the first water seen for over 40 miles, there not being a single water-course for the whole of that distance.

Friday, May 30.—Camp north of granite ridge. Barometer, 27.50 in.; wind, north. Very heavy dew, a fine morning, but every appearance of more rain. Started for depôt at 7.90 a.m., water in every direction, and ground extremely boggy, which obliged us to walk and lead our horses nearly all the way; arrived at 4 p.m. I found that the Warburton had been running, as also the creek at the camp. The seater-hole has risen five feet. Ins afraid I shall be delayed in moving my camp to the Bluff. The camels are likely to give us a great deal of trouble if we have any running water to cross, for the Affghans have made repeated attempts to get one across this creek, but nothing will induce it to face the water. Weather looks threatening. Commenced raining at 6 p.m and showery all night.

{Page 5}

Saturday, May 31.—Depôt, No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.58 in.

Thick fog this morning; weather still unsettled; thunder and lightning, west and south-west; steady rain at 7 p.m.

Sunday, June 1.—Depôt, No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.62 in; wind east. Rained steadily the greater part of the night. If this weather continues it is impossible to say when I shall be able to get a start with waggon and camels.

Monday, June 2.—Depôt, No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.68 in. Morning fine, light wind from north. I start to-morrow for the Bluff, leaving my brother in charge of camels and waggon, to follow as soon as the ground is sufficiently dry.

Tuesday, June 3.—Depôt, No. 2, west of Mount Gardiner. Barometer, 27.0 in; wind south-east. Made a start at 9 a.m., found the ground very soft. Camped near granite ridge at the last water north of scrub.

Wednesday, June 4.—Granite ridge. Barometer, 27.57 in.; wind south-east. Very heavy travelling all day. Camped in scrub without water.

Thursday, June 5.—Camp in mulga scrub. Latitude, 22° 39' 58" south. Barometer, 27.85 in. Proceeded to foot of Bluff without finding any water. I found some shortly after our arrival in some rock-holes, about one mile north-west of Bluff. In the afternoon Mr. Berry and I ascended the Bluff, on which we found a small pile of stones, most probably erected by Major Warburton, from here we had an extensive view of the surrounding country; saw a number of salt lagoons, to the west and south-west, no creek of any kind, could also see the MacDonnell Range—a high point bearing 218° 45', and some hills south. I find this bluff to be 1,300 feet above the surrounding country, the upper portion of which is perpendicular rocks of granite 470 feet high.

Friday, June 6.—Foot of Bluff. Latitude 22° 50' 58" south. Barometer, 27.63 in.; wind south-east. Started in search of water, taking "Moses;" at 2 miles north-north-west of Bluff came upon a large claypan; continued on round foot of hills and up a small rocky gully; here I found a nice rock water-hole, close to which was a large stone or rock marked (W/73L), returning I found Major Warburton's Camp and tree also marked. I had a cut on this rock. Returned to camp and brought horses to claypan in the afternoon.

Saturday, June 7.—Depôt, No 3. Claypan, north-north-west of Bluff. Latitude 22° 49' south. Wind east; Barometer, 27.60 in. Took horses to join my Thursday's track with claypan. Towards noon the weather again looked threatening; a shower at 5 p.m.

Sunday, June 8.—Depôt, No. 3. Claypan, north-north-west of Bluff. Barometer 27.74 in.; wind south-west.

Monday, June 9.—Depôt, No. 3. Claypan, north-north-west of Bluff. Barometer, 28.78; wind south-east. Taking "Moses" and leaving Mr. Berry and Winnall, in charge of the horses, I started for high point, on the MacDonnell Range; course 216°. At two miles crossed channel of salt swamp going south, at seven and a half miles over low sandy ground covered with spinifex, mallee and desert oaks, struck a salt lagoon, which obliged me to change course to 252° for one and a-half miles, turned to 214° for one mile, and again struck lagoon, changed to 264° 30' at one and a-quarter mile top of a sandhill, another lagoon about three miles long, bearing 19° 30'; proceeded to high point again, clearing the swamps, bearing 212° 15'; at four and a-half and five miles, passed some small claypans; country well grassed, covered with brokers limestone, teatree and mulga scrub; at six miles a few white gums. At this point the country becomes sandy and is covered with spinifex; at seven and three-quarter miles, sandhill running east; at twenty and a-half miles camped, the last fourteen miles having been nothing but spinifex sandhills about quarter of a mile apart, all running east and west as far as I could see; timber, desert oaks, grevillia, mallee, and acacia.

Tuesday, June 10.—Camp in spinifex sandhills. Barometer, 27.80 in.; wind south. A very sharp frost this morning. Continued same course as yesterday afternoon (212° 15'); at 7.20 a.m. and at twenty six and a-half miles, came to detached granite hills; here the country changes, there being good grass and mulga. At thirty-one miles on this course, found water in a gully one mile from top of high point, which must be Mr. Giles's Mount Liebig, as it is the most westerly point on the MacDonnell Range; here I watered horses and returned to claypan passed yesterday, making altogether thirty-six miles I have travelled to-day, over very heavy country.

Wednesday, June 11.—Claypan. Barometer, 27.97 in.; wind east. Sharp frost. Arrived at Depôt, at 11 a.m. The waggon and camels had arrived during my absence.

Thursday, June 12.—Depôt 3. Barometer, 27.98 in. wind east. Started from Mount Liebig. Sent Winnall and Moses to Claypan, while I proceeded to the top of one of the West Bluff Hills to take some bearings. This ridge is composed of gneiss. Strike south-east by east; dip, 81° south. Could see the salt lagoons stretching away a long distance south-west. I have instructed my brother to follow with camp to-morrow.

Friday, June 13.—Claypan north of sandhills. Barometer, 37.95 [sic] in.; wind east. Proceeded to foot of Mount Liebig, where we arrived a little before sundown; it was nearly dark before we had watered all the horses, as the gully is very rough. Camped close to water, which from its appearance I fancy stands a long time, though not permanent.

Saturday, June 14.—Foot of Mount Liebig. Barometer 27.46 in.; wind, north-east, and very cold. Mr. Berry and I ascended the Mount, which we found to be very high, being 2,050 feet above the surrounding country, and 3,428 feet above sea level. From the top I could see the sandhills we passed, extending for a great distance both east and west. They have the appearance of an immense ploughed field, and are far better to look at than to travel over. I could also see a continuation of the salt lagoons near the Bluff, extending to the west for over thirty miles. Mount Liebig is on the western extremity of the MacDonnell Range, there being only a number of comparatively small hills extending to the westward. Part of the MacDonnell south. The country looks worse than that we have just passed over. This part of the range is composed of basalt, gneiss, and sandstone. Strike east, dip 14° to south, the rock perpendicular for 400 and 500 feet on south side. It was late before we got back to camp.

Sunday, June 15.—Mount Liebig. Barometer, 27.40 in.; wind, east. Removed camp out {Page 6} of hills to a point one and three-quarter miles north-east north of Mount Liebig. I expect waggon and camels to-day. Main camp came up before sundown, all safe.

Monday, June 16.—Depôt 4. Mount Liebig. Latitude, 23° 16' 17" south. Barometer, 27.47 in.; wind, east. Started with my brother to examine the country around Mount Liebig, in hope of finding good water, but without success. I shall, therefore, be obliged to leave the camp here while I proceed to the west and south-west. One of the Affghans, Kamran, went out shooting to-day, and brought back a fine kangaroo, which was most acceptable after the dried meat. I have often eaten the meat before south of Adelaide, but it is not to be compared to this. I have been obliged to put the party upon half rations, as owing to the dry country that was chosen for my starting point so much time has already been lost. As the Affghans have an agreement with Mr. Elder for ten pounds of flour and meat per week, I was obliged to get them to sign one for me, that for the suns of 5s. per week they would be contented with the same amount of rations as the rest of my party.

Tuesday, June 17.—Mount Liebig. Barometer, 27.42 in.; wind, east. After two of the horses were shod, in the afternoon I started, taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. Proceeded along north slope of range, course 279° 30', for six and a quarter miles. Very rough country, covered with spinifex. Changed to 241° 30' for point of Mount Liebig ridge. Splendid grass in the mulga here, four and a quarter miles point. Changed to 237°, point of another range, running parallel to this; at two miles a small gum creek running north-west into sandhills. At two and three-quarter miles camped.

Wednesday, June 18.—West of Mount Liebig. Barometer, 27.55 in.; wind, south-east. Started on same course (237°), which I continued to five miles, point of range. Changed here to 244° 30'; at three and a half miles another ridge, bearing 103°, composed of granite. Strike, east by south; dip, 40° to south. Changed to 239° 15', a small detached hill, at one and three-quarter miles top. Here changed to a high hill, which I suppose to be Mr. Giles's Mount Udor, bearing 238° 45'. The whole of the country travelled over is firm sandy ground, well grassed, and timbered with tall mulga and boxwood. At five and a half miles came to some low ground, and found enough water in a claypan to water our horses; to six and a half miles the ground is swampy, and covered with soda in places; at nine miles crossed a quartz ridge running west; at fifteen miles reached foot of hill: the last three miles very poor country, covered with spinifex and mallee. Camped.

Thursday, June 19.—Foot of (supposed) Mount Udor. Barometer, 27.63 in.; wind, south-east, bitterly cold. Started on course 279° 45' for small detached hill. For five miles over well grassed mulga country, with patches of spinifex. Country to south-west nothing but small hills, scrub, and sandhills; not a drop of water since leaving claypan yesterday. I shall now turn away more to the south, on course 197°, to a peak on ridge to the south; at three and a half miles spinifex sandhills running east and west, timbered with oaks, grevillia, mallee, and a great many quandong trees, loaded with green fruit; at six miles came to sandstone hill rising out of one of the sandhills; at fifteen and a half miles reached peak, sandhills and spinifex the whole distance. This I found to be only a narrow ridge, with sandhills, extending south and west as far as I could see; one hill on the horizon, bearing 277°, and appears about fifty miles distant; not a rise of any description to the south, excepting sand. The ridge is composed of red sandstone. Strike, north-west; dip, 10° to south-east. My horses have now been without water two days. Camped at foot of ridge.

Friday, June 20.—Camp near sandstone ridge. Barometer, 27.65 in.; wind, S.E. Proceeded along edge of ridge on course 78°. At two miles from camp found a nice little hole of water in one of the gullies. After watering horses continued course to three miles. Here I changed to 82°, still along ridge over sandhills, spinifex, and stones for three miles; changed to a hill bearing 79° 30' at ten and a half miles over spinifex and oak sandhills; passed a low detached hill (red sandstone) bearing W. by N. eighteen miles top of hill, some sandhills extending the whole distance. Mount Liebig bears 37° 30' (no water). Turned along foot of hill until I arrived at a gap through the ridge, about eighth of a mile in width, with hills to the north, and cliffs on the south, forming a very pretty pass. Here I made sure of finding water, but after searching for some time was obliged to camp without any.

Saturday, June 21.—Gap in sandstone ridge. Barometer, 27.47 in.; sharp frost; wind east. Started at 7 a.m., continuing same course—76° 20'. At five and a half miles from top of hill changed to 65° 30'. At one mile again altered course to a prominent bluff on the MacDonnell Ranges, probably Mr. Giles's Mount Palmer, bearing 49° 30'; at one and a half miles sandhills commence again, running in all directions, covered with oaks, mallee, and spinifex. At eight and a half miles came upon the tracks of three bullocks, making eastward; at twelve miles low ridge one mile south of course, which I ascended in hope of seeing some sign of a creek. I continued course from this hill to a gully near Mount Palmer, bearing 41°; at six and a half miles crossed a creek (stony bed) going south. Here the ground becomes very stony, and still covered with spinifex. At seven and a half miles entered gully, and found a small hole of water, high up in the rock. Here we managed to water the horses. Camped in one of the gullies.

Sunday, June 22.—Camp near Mount Palmer. Barometer, 27.25 in.; wind, S.E., and bitterly cold. Ascended the Bluff; it is 1,550 feet above the level of the surrounding country, and composed of granite, gneiss, sandstone, and pudding stone; strike of rock, west; dip, 15° to north. I could see nothing but the MacDonnell Ranges south and east; a large flat between here and the former, a very peculiar little hill about three miles east, which I have named Blanche Tower. I joined my brother at foot of rocks, and proceeded to depôt at Mount Liebig Passed over some very rough spinifex country. On our way found some waterholes in a gap bearing 337° 30' from Mount Liebig, and five miles distant. I have named this Berry's Pass., Pound all well at the depôt.

Monday, June 23.—Depôt No. 4, Mount Liebig. Barometer, 27.62 in.; wind, east. I shall remain here to-day, and remove my camp to Berry's Pass to-morrow.

Tuesday, June 24.—Depôt No. 4, Mount Liebig. Barometer, 27.62 in.; wind, east. Proceeded to Berry's Pass. I start to-morrow to find water south of Mount Palmer. I shall be {Page 7} obliged to try the south-east end of Lake Amadeus, as there is no chance of getting away by the northern end.

Wednesday, June 25.—Depôt No. 5, Berry's Pass. Barometer, 27.50 in.; latitude, 23° 21' 20" south; wind, east. Started at 8.20 a.m., taking Moses, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. In two hours reached Mount Palmer. From here I proceeded on course 159° 20'; at three and a quarter miles over very sandy country, densely timbered with mulga. Struck a small guns creek coming from the foot of Blanche Tower, and going S.W., in which I found a small hole of rainwater. Whilst passing through the dense mulga I noticed a number of boughs laid along the ground, making a zigzag brush fence. I cannot make out what the natives catch in them, as the fence is too low to stop kangaroo or emu. At six miles over similar country crossed a low sand ridge, bearing east, with oaks, spinifex, and a little grass. Then continue to nine miles. Just before getting clear of the sandhills I crossed fresh tracks of three bullocks making east-north-east; probably the same we saw before. This is very fortunate—as owing to the bad country we shall require meat before long, and beef will certainly be preferable to horse or camel flesh. These bullocks seem to have a taste for exploring, as they must have been out some distance to the westward. At eleven miles through thick mulga camped at foot of a sandstone ridge.

Thursday, June 26.—Foot of sandstone ridge. Barometer 27.28 in.; wind, east. At 7 a.m. continued on same course miles top of one of these sandstone ridges; changed to 146° 20' for a point of one of the spurs of the MacDonnell range. At a quarter of a mile a small creek with stony bed coming from west and going south-south-west; at 3½ miles changed to small bill covered with pines, bearing 134° 45': country stony; covered with spinifex. At q miles came upon a small gum creek at foot of hill (stony bed) a small waterhole. After watering horses I changed to 224°, I noticed Mr. Giles's camp near here: continued course at one mile; again struck creek at its junction with main creek at two miles; main creek bearing away west-south-west; sandy, mulga, country; spinifex, sandhills on south side of creek, five miles top of a low detached hill; general direction of sandhills south-west. As I was now in Mr. Giles's country I decided to try Glen Edith for water, and from there as quickly as possibly on to Lake.

Friday, June 27.—Foot of detached bill. Barometer 27.28 in.; wind, east. Started at 7.30 a.m.; course 234° 30'. After travelling fifteen and a-half miles over spinifex and oak sand-hills, I found myself on the top of a high cliff; not the slightest sign of which could be seen as I approached the sand continuing to the edge of sandstone cliff. From here I notice two small rocky hills covered with pines at about half a mile distant, and bearing south-south-west, I determined to look about here, as Mr. Giles spoke of two such hills being in the vicinity of water at Glen Edith. After travelling a mile and a quarter I found water and marked trees, the waterhole being quite full. I shall now return to Berry's Pass and bring my camp to this water. Proceeded on course 16° 30' in direction of Blanche Tower; at two miles top of cliff; at twelve miles over spinifex and oak sandhills, camped; clouds gathering to the south-west; every appearance of rain.

Saturday, June 28th.—Camp in Sandhills. Barometer, 27.40 in.; wind, S.W., continued same course (16° 30'). Started at 6.40 a.m., intending, if possible, to make the Depôt, a long stage, 35 miles, and over very heavy country; commenced raining steadily just as we started. At two miles I crossed the creek on which I had seen Mr. Giles's camp, creek going west. At six and a half miles clear of sandhills once more and into thick mulga; at seven and eight miles crossed small Gum Creek going west, stony beds; nine miles, top of spur of south MacDonnell Ranges, composed of sandstone; at thirteen miles sandhills again; at eighteen miles I struck my outgoing tracks, and reached Depôt before dark, showery all day. I found all well. Kamran, who has been very active in trying to get us kangaroos, had shot one, so we were enabled to indulge in fresh meat.

Sunday, June 29th.—Depôt No. 5, Berry's Pass. Barometer, 27.37 in.; wind, N.E.

Monday, June 30th.—Depôt, No. 5, Berry's Pass. Barometer, 27.40 in.; wind, N.E. I sent Mr. Berry and Winnall on with the horses to Glen Edith and Moses to show them the way, stopping the waggon and camels at rain water S.E. of Mount Palmer, whilst my brother and I hunt up the bullocks. The waggon arrived too late to start before to-morrow morning. As there is only a small hole of water here I have instructed Kamran to take a camel and examine the creek to see if he can find any more.

Tuesday, July 1st.—Camp S.E. of Mount Palmer. Barometer, 27.34 in; wind, S.E. Started at 7.30 a.m., for where I had seen the fresh tracks, and found them going E.N.E.; follow them. I took bearings, and coming back will keep a course to fix the country in this direction. The bullocks are evidently making for some place they have been to before, for after travelling some miles they struck and followed some old tracks going in same direction. We made 25 miles to-day, and found some water in a creek going E.S.E., at which we camped. The country changes here from stony rises to well-grassed flats with salt cotton-bush and herbs. The tracks are not getting much fresher.

Wednesday, July 2nd.—Camp at rain water. Barometer, 27.32 in.; wind, S.E.; sharp frost. Proceeded on tracks, and just before dark we came upon the bullocks in splendid condition. They are three that were lost from Alice Springs just before we arrived there, and were always supposed to have made down the country. This has evidently been their head quarters, and they might remain here for years before anybody found them. I think it would be a pity to disappoint them after they have shown such a decided taste for exploring. I ascended a ridge, from which a point I have taken for Haast's Bluff bears 317° 30', but could not see much of the country. The MacDonnell is only a broken range to the north,; to the N.N.E. a large plain with claypan, extending some ten miles to the range, through a gap in which I could see the Bluff range and mulga scrub for miles. The South MacDonnell to a continuous range, about four miles from this ridge, and a number of ridges between. The creek I camped on last night passed two miles north of here, and I fancy must continue to the Finke. I have named this Halcomb's Creek.

Thursday, July 3rd.—Camp near Haast's Bluff. Barometer, 27.35 in.; wind, east. Made an early start after the bullocks; I took a course 276° for eight miles, when I was obliged to change {Page 8} 290° to keep off the stones. At four miles reached water in Halcomb's Creek; at five miles, after crossing stony ridge, the country changes to spinifex, sand, and mulga. Here I altered course to a quartz ridge, bearing 255° 30', and at seven and a half miles, after travelling over poor country, camped near quartz ridge.

Friday, July 4.—Camp near quartz ridge. Barometer, 27.32 in.; wind, south-east. After finding bullocks which had strayed some distance, proceeded to where I had left the waggon on course 263°. I reached the camp in 15 miles, after travelling over inferior country similar to that passed yesterday. I was glad to hear Kamran had been successful, and had found a hole of water, four feet deep, two miles nearer Blanche Tower.

Saturday, July 5.—Camp south-east of Mount Palmer. Barometer 27.32 in., wind. north-east. Proceeded alone to Glen Edith, a long day's stage, thirty-five miles over sandhills and spinifex.

Sunday, July 6.—Glen Edith, latitude 23° 50' 22° south. Barometer 27.35 in., wind south-east. Waggon arrived this afternoon, my brother bringing news that the cow camel had got a calf. My stock is increasing very fast, three bullocks and a camel in one week.

Monday, July 7.—Glen Edith.—Depôt No. 6. Barometer 27.45 in., wind south-east. I sent my brother and Mr. Berry to the Gardiner Range, while I proceeded with Moses to Mr. Giles's Vale of Tempe. Started at 7 a.m., course 176° 30'; in one mile I was out of the good country, and into spinifex and oak sandhills; at seven to nine miles the timber changed to gums on the sand-hills; at eleven miles top of a sandstone ridge, then sandhills again; at seventeen miles I turned to a gap in a ridge, bearing 267° for 2½ miles; reached top, but could see nothing to induce me to continue; changed to 224° to another ridge distant 6 miles, still same country; change to a high point of cliff, bearing 172° 30'; followed down gully; at 1 mile struck a gum creek and camped.

Tuesday, July 8.—Camp at Sandstone Cliff. Barometer 27.45 in., wind south-east. Continued same course as last evening, 1½ miles top of cliff, bearing south-east; changed to 105° and at 9 miles, over oak sandhills well grassed; struck a gum creek, on which I saw signs of Mr. Giles's horses; followed creek north for 1½ miles, and found a small hole of water covered with bushes, I suppose by the natives, to prevent the emu from walking about and making it muddy; still continued along creek, and at two miles came upon Mr. Giles's camp, with a tree marked (Robinson.) I could find no water here, although I dug in several places, so I determined to try if there was any at King's Creek; changed course to 113°; at half and two and a-half miles, sandstone ridges, bearing north; at four miles a small gum creek going south, in this I found a native well with water in it; at fourteen miles, over sandstone ridges and sandhills, came in sight of King's Creek, one mile distant; turned here to 197° 30' to some rocks by which the creek passed, and found a long hole of rain water, but not deep; returned to where I left, fourteen miles course, and started on 343°; at half a mile camped on the edge of a large cotton bush flat, and west of George Giles's Range.

Wednesday, July 9.—Camp west of G. Giles's Range. Barometer 27.80 in., wind east-south-east; continued same course as last night; at one mile, creek to west of course; at 3 miles crossed branch of same coming from east-south-east; changed to 314°. I have now entered a valley, formed by what I suppose to be the James Range, and a long ridge south, which I have named "Hope Valley"; it is one of the prettiest places I have seen in the north; at ten miles a spur of south ridge; at eleven miles found some water, which will be a great assistance to us in moving camp; at sixteen miles the valley and good country change to spinifex sandhills; altered course to 330°; at one and a-half miles, top of sandstone ridge, I crossed on my way out; changed to 348° 45' to strike Glen Edith, and reach the depôt; in twelve and a-half miles, over country the same as that I before described, only on this course I noticed a number of grass trees.

Thursday, July 10.—Glen Edith. Barometer 27.45 in., wind east. A very sharp frost this morning. Proceeded with camp part of the way to King's Creek; camped upon a nice patch of feed, where the kangaroo were very numerous; after unpacking the horses, Mr. Berry and Winnall took the rifles and went out shooting, they returned after dark with a fine young buck.

Friday, July 11.—Hope Valley. Barometer 27.60 in.; wind, east, and a sharp frost. Started at 7 a.m., and arrived early at King's Creek. I walked down the creek some distance, but although the banks were damp I could find no more water. Party arrived about sundown.

Saturday, July 12.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek.—Barometer, 27.80 in., latitude 24° 16' 44" south. Wind, east. I ascended Mr. Giles's (George Giles) Range to-day to get a view to the south. I found it 850 feet above plain. I could see what I suppose to be Mount Olga bearing 210° 0' and several ridges south, one of which I have named Winnall's Ridge. From what I could see King's Creek appears to run in direction of Mount Olga. Returning to camp I found some nice waterholes at the head of this Creek.

Sunday, July 13.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek. Barometer, 27.90 in.; wind, east.

Monday, July 14.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek—Barometer, 27.92 in.; wind, south-east, sharp frost. Started at 10 a.m., taking Moses and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. Course, 211° down creek. At starting crossed to west side at two miles, creek one mile east. Crossed same at four and a half and six and three-quarter miles, passing over well-grassed sandy country. At seven miles top of a ridge bearing W.N.W.; here I changed course to 214° for point on a distant ridge. At one and a half and two-quarter miles I again crossed the creek, which is here very small and with low banks. At three miles it turns to the west, and ends in a small gum swamp. Continued course to sixteen miles over spinifex sandhills and well-grassed mulga flats. No sign of water since leaving the camp.

Tuesday, July 15.—Camp thirteen miles south of King's Creek. Barometer, 28 10 in.; wind, south-east. Proceeded at 7.30 a.m. At four miles top of ridge bearing east. Country similar to that passed over yesterday to within two miles of ridge, where there are some clay pans and salt bush flats. Could see Mount Olga and another high mount to the east of it, but no sign of the lake, and no water; nothing visible but spinifex sandhills. Changed to another ridge bearing same as this one, west point 168° 30'; reached this in three and a half miles, but could see nothing very inviting beyond. As my horses have had no water since yesterday morning I {Page 9} must turn toward the camp again, and make another trial more to the eastward. Followed ridge east for two miles, but still no sign of water. Changed course to 18° at three miles. Sandstone rise bearing east, country between ridges spinifex sandhills. At four miles same cotton and salt-bush flats as I passed this morning, and a large clay-pan two miles long and one mile wide just to the east of course. Did not reach the Depôt until 7 p.m. Intend taking two camels to-morrow and try south.

Wednesday, July 16.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek. Barometer, 27.9 in.; thermometer, 19° (rather cold for camping); wind, north-east. Started at 9 a.m., taking Kamran and two camels, course 180°. At two miles commencement of spinifex sandhills, continued on for twenty miles without any change excepting the sandhills getting higher. Camped, feeling as tired as if I had ridden 50 miles. The camels do not show to advantage in sandhills, they labour terribly getting up the slightest rise; but if they will go without water, all imperfections can easily be overlooked. Before leaving I instructed Mr. Berry and my brother to go to a high point on the George Giles Range.

Thursday, July 17.—Camp in Sandhills. Barometer, 27.91 in.; thermometer, 24°; wind, north-east. Continued same course at 7.30 a.m. (180°) for nineteen miles—making thirty-nine miles from Depôt over spinifex sandhills, and no sign of a change to be seen. Altered course to 113° 30' for point of a ridge in that direction; at six miles reached it after passing over same wretched country. This is one of a number of small ridges bearing south-east; still no water. I now changed to 160° 30', the country improving. At two miles crossed a small samphire swamp, the country round being covered with broken limestone, also a great deal of saltbush. At six miles camped surrounded by our old friends the spinifex sandhills, timbered with mulga, native poplar, and acacia bushes.

Friday, July 18.—Camp in Spinifex Sandhills. Barometer 27.97 in., wind north-east. At 7.30 a.m. proceeded on same course (160° 30') and at two miles came upon some clay pans, and a large native camp which has not long been deserted. Here I found a small hole of water; the camels seemed very thirsty. This water will enable me to get some distance south-west. At 6 miles, top of a ridge, saw native fires to the south-east and west; a white lagoon, or part of lake bearing 280°. seen over a low place in the sandhills, I think there must be some connexion between this and swamp passed last evening, Changed to 199° at 3½ miles, top of another ridge from which I could see a clay-pan, with water, to the south-west, a samphire swamp to the east, Mount Olga, and bill east of it, also a high flat-topped hill which I have named Mount Conner, after Mr. M. L. Conner, bearing 129°. I shall now make an attempt to reach hill east of Olga, bearing 236° 45'. Country travelled over stony, well grassed, timbered with mulga (lightly). Travelled seven miles, over the roughest spinifex sandhills I have yet seen; timber mulga, gravillia, and acacia bushes. The camel travelling is very tiring, it is more like riding a knocked-up cart colt, than any other animal I have ever mounted.

Saturday, July 19.—Camp in Spinifex Sandhills. Barometer 28.12 in, wind south-east. Continued same course, in direction of hill, over the same wretched country. The hill, as I approached, presented a most peculiar appearance, the upper portion being covered with holes or caves. When I got clear of the sandhills, and was only two miles distant, and the hill, for the first time, coming fairly in view, what was my astonishment to find it was one immense rock rising abruptly from the plain; the holes I had noticed were caused by the water in some places forming immense caves. At 34 miles reached foot of rock; only found enough water to replenish our bags, but none for the camels—they seem very thirsty, though only twenty-four hours since they had water. No sign of a creek on this (the north) side; the water runs into large shallow basins, about 100 yards from foot of rock. The good country extending for two miles round the rock. I have named this Ayers Rock, after Sir Henry Ayers.

Sunday, July 20.—Ayers Rock. Barometer 28.07 in., wind east. I rode round the foot of rock in search of a place to ascend; found a waterhole on south side, near which I made an attempt to reach the top, but found it hopeless. Continued along to the west, and discovered a strong spring coming from the centre of the rock, and pouring down some very steep gullies into a large deep hole at the foot of rock. This I have named Maggie's Spring. Seeing a spur less abrupt than the rest of the rock, I left the camels here, and after walking and scrambling two miles barefooted, over sharp rocks, succeeded in reaching the summit, and had a view that repaid me for my trouble—Kamran accompanied me. The top is covered with small holes in the rock, varying in size from two to twelve feet diameter, all partly filled with water. Mount Olga is about twenty miles west. Some low ranges and ridges west-north-west, one of which I think must be McNicol's Range; part of lake visible, bearing north Mount Conner 96°, and high ranges south-east, south, and south-west, with sandhills between. The one south-east. I have named after His Excellency Governor Musgrave; and a high point in same, bearing 141°, Mount Woodroffe, after the Surveyor-General. This is a high mass of granite, the surface of which has been honeycombed, and is decomposing, 1,100 feet above surrounding country, two miles in length (east and west), and one mile wide, rising abruptly from the plain. How I envied Kamran his hard feet; he seemed to enjoy the walking about with bare feet, while mine were all in blisters, and it was as much as I could do to stand: the soil around the rock is rich and black. This seems to be a favourite resort of the natives in the wet season, judging from the numerous camps in every cave. These caves are formed by large pieces breaking off the main rock and falling to the foot. The blacks make holes under them, and the heat of their fires causes the rock to shell off, forming large arches. They amuse themselves covering these with all sorts of devices—some of snakes, very cleverly done, others of two hearts joined together; and in one I noticed a drawing of a creek with an emu track going along the centre. I shall have more time to examine these when the main camp is here. This rock is certainly the most wonderful natural feature I have ever seen. What a gland sight this must present in the wet season; waterfalls in every direction. I shall start back, to morrow, and trust to finding some water between here and King's Creek, which is now eighty-four miles distant.

Monday. July 21.—Foot of Ayers Rock Barometer 27.97 in.; wind north-east. Started at 7 a.m.; course 22° 15'; the morning cold and cloudy. A good shower would be of great {Page 10} assistance. I managed to get thirty-three miles before sundown; spinifex sandhills the whole way, with mulga flats—an improvement upon what we passed through going to the rock. Camped on cast edge of a salt lagoon, which I fancy must be part of the lake.

Tuesday, July 22.—Edge of salt lagoon. Barometer 28.10 in.; wind south. Still cloudy; a few drops of rain during the night. At one mile on same course struck an arm of Lake Amadeus, bearing cast and west, and about one mile wide where I struck it, but increasing on either side. From the top of a sandhill, fifty feet above surface of lake, I obtained a good view to the west, and from bearings taken I make it six miles wide ten miles from here, west. While I was taking bearings I sent Kamran to ascertain whether we could cross the lake. He found it much firmer than I supposed, so I decided to try it, as in case of not getting over I should have to ride forty miles round. We got over safely. I now altered course to Winnall's Ridge, bearing 12°. At three and a-half miles, over very high sandhills, we passed a salt lagoon; at ten miles I discovered a native well with water, in the middle of a beautifully grassed flat covered with broken limestone, and bearing west by south from Winnall's Ridge, and two miles distant. After clearing out well proceeded to ridge, which I ascended and got a good view of lake to the east and west of where I crossed. Changed course to 359° to strike my former tracks, and camped on a salt bush flat, twenty-five miles south of King's Creek. I shall now be able to get party down to Ayers Rock. It would have been rather an undertaking to get the waggon through without this well.

Wednesday, July 23.—Salt bush flat. Barometer 27.92 in.; wind north-east. A few drops of rain towards morning, and every appearance of a wet day. I arrived at the depôt at 5 p.m., and was glad to find that they had a nice joint of emu roasting, for Kamran and I had been living for eight days on our present short allowance for four. I shall send to-morrow and try and get water by digging at the end of King's Creek. Very light rain all day.

Thursday, July 24.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek. Barometer 27.73 in.; wind north-east. I sent Nilen and Jemma Kahn to sink for water. They returned at sundown, having obtained sufficient for waggon horses. Showery all day.

Friday, July 25.—Depôt No. 7, King's Creek. Barometer 27.82 in.; wind north-east. Moved to water seven miles down creek.

Saturday, July 26.—King's Creek. Barometer 28 in.; wind east. Travelled to three miles past native well, which I have named "Kamran's Well." Sufficient water for waggon horses and camels.

Sunday, July 27.—Three miles south of Kamran's Well. Latitude 24° 50' 50" south; barometer 28.32 in.; wind east. The horses went back to the well, as there was no feed anywhere close to camp. Proceeded to Ayers Rock at 9 a.m. After two hours' delay we got the horses safely across the lake, which I found far more dangerous than I at first supposed, as there was soft red clay beneath the surface. I'm afraid the loaded camels and waggon will not be able to cross. Found the surface of lake (by the temperature of boiling water) to be 670 feet above sea level. Arrived at the rock at 9 o'clock p.m.

Monday, July 28.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer 28 in.; latitude 25° 21' 28" south. This rock appears more wonderful every time I look at it, and I may say it is a sight worth riding over eighty-four miles of spinifex sandhills to see.

Tuesday, July 29.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer 28.02 in.; wind south. Our camp is on the south side of the rock and about half a mile west of Maggie's Spring. I shall start to-morrow for a hill bearing 200° 30'. I have named it "Allanah's Hill." I thought it necessary to give the horses two days' rest after their long journey without water.

Wednesday, July 30.—Depôt 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.95 in.; wind east. Started with Moses at 7.45 a.m.; course, 200° 30'. At seven and a half miles left the spinifex sandhills and got into very thick mulga, with patches of spinifex and abundance of grass. At eleven and a half miles, sandhill bearing N.E., mulga extending to S.W., surface of ground covered with broken limestone and flint. At seventeen to nineteen miles, more spinifex sandhills; at twenty-two miles, rocky ridge; at twenty-eight miles, top of Allanah's Hill. At its foot I noticed a large native camp only deserted a few days. Whilst I ascended the hill, I sent Moses to find out where they had been getting their water. This hill is composed of grey quartz and sandstone—strike, west; dip, 30° to south; it is 800 feet above surrounding country. No sign of a creek, nor of a termination of sandhills. Moses had found a native well in one of the gullies, so I determined to camp here. My horse was dead lame, having run a piece of mulga into its fetlock; this is very annoying, as it is my best horse. After clearing out the well, I found it was quite dry down to the clay; the natives must have stayed as long as there was any water. Night cloudy.

Thursday, July 31.—Foot of Allanah's Hill. Barometer, 27.34 in.; wind N.W.; still cloudy. My horse is still very lame; I shall he obliged to return to depôt. On my way back I went to a small detached hill, passed yesterday, distant twelve miles; found two native wells, both very nearly dry. The waggon and camels had not arrived when I reached the depôt. At eight p.m. my brother came up with the waggon horses and bullocks, leaving the waggon about ten miles back. I was very glad, as I was getting uneasy about their crossing the lake; they managed to get over by making a road in the worst places with boughs. At 9.30 p.m. it commenced raining, and continued showery all night; water rushing in all directions.

Friday, August I.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.87 in.; wind N.W. The rock presented a grand appearance this morning; close to our camp was a waterfall about 200 feet high, the water coming down in one sheet of foam.

Saturday, August 2.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.87 in.; wind south; still showery.

Sunday, August 3.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 28.03 in.; wind S.W. A beautiful day after the rain. Walking about the rock on west side I observed native fires quite close to us, and soon after two natives came for water, and after our making signs they came up to us, but seemed terribly frightened. I fancy they must have heard of whites before. They were all fine looking young men, about 5ft. 8in. high, wearing their hair in the shape of a chignon, a string being tied tight, close to the head, the same as those on the Finke and on the telegraph line. I took advantage of this fine clay to kill a bullock.

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Monday, August 4.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.68 in.; wind west. A very rainy looking morning; nothing could be worse for our meat jerking than this weather. Commenced raining steadily at eleven a.m., and continued all day; very heavy rain at night. We were visited by three of the natives we saw yesterday; they seem very peaceable. All I could make out from them was that they call water "carpee." I gave them a firestick, and they walked away.

Tuesday, August 5.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.60 in.; wind W.N.W. Heavy rain all night, and no appearance of its clearing. Pm afraid if this weather continues we shall lose all our meat. The country just round the rock is getting very boggy. The waterfalls are really beautiful.

Wednesday, August 6.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.78 in.; wind, S.W. A beautiful day after the rain.

Thursday, August 7.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer. 27.77 in.; wind, south-west. A cloudy morning again; ground still boggy. I shall start to-morrow for Mount Olga.

Friday, August 8.—Depôt No. 8, Ayers Rock. Barometer, 27.88 in.; wind, west. Started for Mount Olga, taking my brother, and leaving my camp to follow as soon as the meat is ready for packing. There is certain to be water after the rain. At 2 miles the good country round the rock ends, and spinifex and oak sandhills commence, and continue to eight miles. Here the sandhills end, but the country is still spinifex and sand to twelve miles, with patches of mulga. From here the country is good, with abundance of good grass; very thick timber close to the bill. At fourteen and a half miles point of range about one and a half miles north. At seventeen miles, along foot of rocks, I struck a small watercourse, and after following this half a mile found a small running stream, evidently formed by the late rains. Camped. This range is formed of a number of round-topped masses of solid conglomerate rock (known as pudding-stone), but with stony spinifex slopes from 100 to 300 feet rising to their foot. Each hill is a separate rock.

Saturday, August 9.—Mount Olga Range. Barometer, 27.80 in.; wind, south-east. Started for foot of Mount Olga at 8 a.m. The country immediately round the rocks is covered with dense mulga, and very stony. On the south side of the mount I found a spring, which I have named Felix Spring. Here I changed course to a high peak, bearing 245° 40', named Stevenson's Peak, after the Hon. George Stevenson. At three miles through well-grassed mulga; then low sandhills and large spinifex flats, timbered with oak, mulga, malice, and grevillia. At twenty-nine and a half miles camped.

Sunday, August 10.—Sandhills. Barometer, 27.66 in.; wind, east. Continued on same course three miles; foot of stony rise timbered with a new variety of mulga in blossom, very pretty trees. At four miles I noticed a gully a short distance to the east, and sent my brother to see if there was any water. He returned successful, having found a small running stream, which I fancy will stand some time. After watering the horses I continued on to the peak. At four and a half miles crossed a watercourse. The banks of it were covered with quandong trees, loaded with ripe fruit, the finest I ever saw, some of them one and a half inches diameter. It is the prettiest fruit I have seen growing, the rich red contrasts so well with the green leaves. Six and a half miles top of peak. By the barometer I find it is 1,480 feet above surrounding country, composed of granite, basalt, and quartz. Still sandhills to the south, extending to the foot of high ranges, which reaches as far west as the eye can see. I have named these the Mann Ranges, after Mr. Charles Mann.

Monday, August 11.—Stevenson's Peak. Barometer, 27.15 in.; wind, south-east. Returned to Mount Olga, and camped at its foot. Found another spring.

Tuesday, August 12.—Mount Olga. Barometer, 27.73 in.; wind, south. I sent my brother to meet waggon and bring camp to this water. I walked to the top of one of the high rocks this afternoon, first trying Mount Olga, up which I scrambled 900 feet, and could have reached the top, but I was not so sure about being able to get down again. Mount Olga is about 1,600 feet above surrounding country; similar view to that seen from Ayers Rock.

Wednesday, August 13.—Mount Olga. Barometer, 27.66 in.; wind, north-west. Proceeded to the water near Stevenson's Peak, which we reached before sundown.

Thursday, August 14.—Water near Stevenson's Peak. Barometer, 27.32 in. Latitude, 25° 29' 15" south. Wind north-west. Started for Mann Ranges, taking "Moses." Course, 186° 30' from Peak, at two, and two a half miles, passing over well grassed country and stony rises. I found two nice waters in small gum creek coming from a range east of Peak. At six miles over sandy ground with beautiful grass and herbs, which has more the gay appearance of a flower garden than pasture land. Struck a granite rise bearing north-west. This country extends to eight miles to edge of spinifex sandhills. Very low at this point. At fourteen miles over well grassed mulga flats with occasional low spinifex sandhills. Ground continues candy, but no rises very high; spinifex and timbered with oak, mallee, mulga, grevillia, and a few bean trees. At sixteen miles a patch of herbs and grass a foot in height. At twenty-four miles camped, nothing but spinifex for the horses. At twelve miles to-day I noticed a brush fence made by the natives at the edge of a patch of mulga scrub.

Friday, August 15.—Spinifex twenty-four miles south of Stevenson's Peak, Barometer, 27.18 in.; wind north-west. At 6.45 a.m., continued same course. At seven miles spinifex country changed to a splendidly grassed flat, vetch and wild geranium, which extend to foot of range nine miles, here I found a little water, enough to water horses, but I must search for some to bring camp to. Proceeded round to west side of this high point, named Mount Charles, and found a strong stream running from hill. This is the finest country I have seen since leaving the good country, say within 200 miles of Adelaide, and is equal to any in Australia at this time of year. Travelled back for twenty miles to the edge of the good country passed yesterday.

Saturday, August 16.—Mulga scrub. Barometer, 27.18.; wind west. Returned to depôt near Stevenson's Peak. The summer is coming on very fast, it is now extremely hot during the day and close at night.

Sunday, August 17.—Depôt No. 9. Stevenson's Peak. Barometer, 27.60 in.; wind south-east.

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Monday, August 18.—Depôt No. 9, Stevenson's Peak. Barometer, 27.41; wind south-east. Started at 10 o'clock and travelled as far as the patch of good feed, passed at sixteen miles from peak and camped.

Tuesday, August 19.—Scrub. Barometer 27.38 in.; wind east. Started at 7.30 a.m., and reached the water about noon. In the afternoon I ascended Mount Charles, which I found to be 1,563 feet above surrounding country, and 3,596 feet above the sea level. It is composed of grey granite and slate. Strike west—dip 65 south. The south portion of these ranges, about eight miles distant, shut out all view in that direction, they extend as far as I can see west. Very high ranges east and east-south-east.

Wednesday, August 20.—Foot of Mount Charles. Depôt No. 10. South Latitude 25° 59 17°. Barometer, 27.27 in.; wind west Started at 9 a.m., with Moses to examine country about these ranges; course, 267° from the top of Mount Charles. At 2 miles passed a spur of range; 3 miles, struck the end of a gum creek, which empties out on flat; another range 14 miles west, bearing north; changed course to 207° 30; following up creek at 1 mile, found running water; at 3 miles along west bank of creek, here coming from south-east, changes to 123° 30'; at 2½ miles creek turns north-east. I continued 2½ miles, to where it comes of a rocky gully, still a very strong stream; the bed of creek to this point is sandy and stony, and densely covered with teatree, winding through splendidly grassed flats, some of them very boggy. I noticed some gums here with very dark purple leaves, growing in the creek. As I could follow the creek no further. I returned to where I left course 207° 30', and proceeded on 240° to try and find a pass through the range to the south; at 4½ miles saw a low place in range, and turned to it, but was unable to reach the range on account of boggy ground, through which a creek with running water comes from range; all these flats are good soil, abundantly grassed, and numbers of herbs, timbered with cork wood and mulga. Returned to depôt. I shall bring camp here.

Thursday, August 2l.—Depôt No. 10, Mount Charles. Barometer, 27.38 in.; wind south. I must wait here to-day as the waggon has not arrived; it, however, arrived in the afternoon.

Friday, August 22.—Depôt No. 10, Mount Charles. Barometer 27.17 in.; wind N.W. Travelled to boggy gully. I walked to the top of a high point I have named Mount Edwin, it is 1,300 feet above flats; from here I obtained a good view of the country to the east, south, and west. To the south, the country to all appearances is very good extensive flats, as far as the eye can see, and lightly timbered, a few detached hills. S.S.W., a low range, which I have named the Deering Hills, and a high point Mount Hardy, no creek running more than a few miles from these ranges; to the S.W. is a fine range, or rather a number of ranges, these I have named the Tomkinson; these will be on our course if we can find a pass, this one not being passable.

Saturday, August 23.—North-east of Mount Edwin. Barometer, 26.92 in.; wind east. Started along range with party; course 325° to the top, a low spur, half mile; changed here to to 301° 30' for point of another range. For one and a half miles still the same beautiful country. Altered course to 341°; at two and a quarter miles crossed a sandhill and changed to 285°, broken hills extending three Miles north, past which the good country appears to run for some distance; very thick mulga in, some places. At two and a half miles a spinifex flat, here I turned to a low place in range bearing 211° 30', which being passable, I have named Trew's Gap. Camped.

Sunday, August 24.—Trew's Gap. Latitude, 26° 1' 16"; barometer, 27.0 in.; wind south-east.

Monday, August 25.—Trew's Gap. Barometer, 27.0 in.; wind north. Started at 9 a.m., taking Kamran and Moses, the former to return if I found water and bring on camp, course, 215°; at one mile passed through second range and continued over low spinifex sandhills to three miles, edge of a beautiful flat, abundance of grass and herbs, ranges east and west of course At four miles changed to 251°, passing close to point of west range; the one to the east extending one mile farther south. At one mile crossed a running stream in a gum creek. This appears a very good water, but it is difficult to tell if they are permanent or not; from the number of natives' tracks and camps, I fancy they must be. This country is well adapted for stock. From two and a half to six and three quarter miles, sandy spinifex country with desert oaks; here the country becomes stony (limestone and flint,) well grassed and timbered with mulga and acacia bushes. At nine and a half miles the commencement of spinifex and mallee sandhills. At twelve miles first spur of Tomkinson Ranges, the spinifex continuing to sixteen miles, when the well grassed flats again commence. At eighteen miles top of a range bearing north-west. Just before ascending this I found a good supply of water in a gully at its foot, which I have named Nilen's Gully. I shall send Kamran back to-morrow.

Tuesday, August 26.—Nilen's Gully. Barometer, 27.18 in.; wind east. Started Kamran back at seven o'clock and proceeded on course 235°. At four miles passed over a low range and beautifully grassed flats, timbered with cork, box, and mulga; changed to 242° 30', and at half a mile found a good water in a gully on south side of ranges; one of the prettiest flats I have seen, going half a mile north into range. At seven miles over similar country, with patches of thick mulga, and over several low ranges; changed to 287° where a gum creek appeared to come from a higher part of range. At two miles struck creek, with a little water running; followed it up for two miles, passing branch creek with water from north, here the creek looked very dry, and the hills are covered with spinifex and mailer, fresh tracks of natives everywhere, also old camps. Returned to two and a half miles on this course and proceeded on 197° along foot of range for one and a half miles, then 224° to top of saddle, distance two miles. Changed to 250° at one mile, top of rise, here I noticed some tall mulga growing, something like pines, with straight barrels, and the branches about thirty feet from the ground; height, from forty-five to fifty feet. At two miles, camped on a creek going west, with water.

Wednesday, August 27.—Tomkinson Ranges. Barometer 27.47 in.; wind, east. At 7.15 a.m. continued same course, following creek for one mile; here it goes to the north of course; at four miles through ranges to top of a peaked hill found water on south-west side in a gully I have named Knuckey's Gully. From here the ranges seem to extend west for a {Page 13} considerable distance, green flats in all directions for miles. South and south-west, mulga country and a few detached hills. I have named two high points in these ranges Mounts Hinckley and Davis. Returned to Nilen's Gully, which I reached about sundown, and found party there.

Thursday, August 28.—Nilen's Gully. Latitude 26° 8' 19" south. Barometer 27.25 in.; wind, east. Proceeded to foot of a hill east of Mount Davis and camped. In the afternoon: ascended it and took bearings. From this point, which is 1,000 feet above surrounding country, some very extensive flats are visible—one about thirty miles in length; north of hill the country appears the same to the foot of the Mann Ranges. Mount Davis must be at least 1,500 feet high. This portion of the range is composed chiefly of grey granite. Strike east, Dip 60° to north.

Friday, August 29.—East of Mount Davis. Latitude 26° 12' 57" south. Barometer 27.45 in.; wind, south-east; very cold and cloudy this morning. Travelled to Knuckey's Gully and camped, as there was some shoeing to be done. Red kangaroo and emu very numerous in these ranges, but they are very shy. Found this camp to be 1,260 feet above sea level, by boiling water.

Saturday, August 30.—Knuckey's Gully. Latitude 26° 16' south. Barometer 27.77 in.; wind, east. Started at 7.45 a.m., taking Moses; horses to follow tracks; course 235°. At seven miles passing a low range, top of a rocky hill; good country all the way. Salt bush flat at foot of hill; can see no termination to these ranges. Changed course to 298°, and at one and a-half miles found water in a gully. Owing to Mr. Berry missing tracks I was unable to go farther on this afternoon as I intended.

Sunday, August 31.—Tomkinson Ranges. Lat. 26° 18' 24" south. Barometer 27.80 in.; wind east.

Monday, September 1.—Tomkinson Ranges. Barometer 27.80 in.; wind north-west. Started at 7 a.m., taking my brother and Moses, the former to return as soon as we found water to bring up camp. Course 271°, at three and a half miles through thick mulga, crossed a large flood flat, timbered with box, thick mulga round the edges; at ten miles, top of one of these ranges bearing south-south-east, same kind of country—one very large flood flat near range composed of grey granite changed to another range to a small peak bearing 258° 30' found a small stream; as we descended on the west side passed over flood flats and thick mulga, all well grassed, to seven miles, top of peak, which I found to be on the south-west end of these ranges, and on the west boundary of the Province; this range bears about north-north-west from here, and is very high to the north; found a little water near here, enough for waggon horses. I continued on course 249°, first sending my brother back to camp. As soon as I got out of spinifex round the foot of range country changes to thick scrub, mulga, and acacia bushes, also a great number of quandong trees covered with fruit. At seven miles this changes to very high spinifex sandhills, with mulga, malice, and grevillia. At sixteen miles camped; nothing but spinifex for the horses. At Stevenson's Peak, where we first saw the ripe peaches, we collected a great many, and dried them; they make very nice jam when boiled, and have kept the party in good health. I shall get some more here.

Tuesday, September 2.—Spinifex sandhills. Barometer 27.77 in.; wind west; a few drops of rain in the night. At 7.25 a.m. continued course three miles, end of sandhills still sandy and covered with spinifex to foot of stony rises. At five and a half miles crossed a gum creek going south, with a little water; at six miles, another from north-west, with plenty of water, I have named this Moses Creek. Saw four ducks on this creek, the first I have seen since leaving the Reynolds Range. Returned to Boundary Peak, where I met my brother and camp.

Wednesday, September 3.—Western boundary of Province. Barometer 27.86 in; wind west. Proceeded to the edge of spinifex, and camped.

Thursday, September 4.—Edge of spinifex. Barometer 28.2 in.; wind S.E., travelled on to Moses Creek, arrived at 2 p.m. I ascended the hill in the afternoon; it is two miles from water in Moses Creek. I obtained anything but a cheerful lookout—sandhills as far as I could see; ranges to the west-nor'-west, which I have named the Cavenagh Ranges, after the Hon. W. Cavenagh, and some hills west. The country is very flat, from the S.E. to W., and appears to be sandhills. The waters seem to get worse as we get more west; none that we have passed since leaving Knuckey's Gully will stand long. I do not like the appearance of the country at all, this hill is composed of conglomerate rock; strike N.E., dip to N.

Friday, September 5.—Moses Creek. Latitude 26° 23' 27" S., barometer 28 in., wind east. Shoeing horses.

Saturday, September 6.—Moses Creek. Barometer 27.98 in.; wind S.E. Started at 8.30 a.m., with my brother and Moses. Course 243°, to a small, fiat-topped hill, six miles top; very poor country the whole way, spinifex sandhills and stony rises timbered with malice, mulga, grevillia, and a few quandongs. Changed course to 279° 0' to a hill south of the Cavenagh Range, which I have named Borrow's Hill; country, spinifex sandhills and dense mulga, with stony flats well grassed: at eighteen miles camped near some small rocky hills.

Sunday, September 7.—Rocky Hills. Barometer 27.60 in.; wind N.W., proceeded on same course, at ten miles top of hill, no sign of water; this is certainly the most wretched lookout I have had; there are sandhills all round, and only ranges of no great size to the west; this I have named the Barrow Ranges, after the Hon. J. H. Barrow, and high point on it, Mount Squires. After walking about for two hours I found enough water by digging, to give our horses a little each. There is no chance of getting further out on our course, on I shall try the Cavenagh Ranges; this country, with exception of that immediately around the hill, is very poor.

Monday, September 8.—Borrow's Hill. Barometer, 27.87 in.; wind, south-west. Proceeded in direction of Cavenagh Range. Course, 360° at four miles, first range bearing east; still spinifex sandhills to foot. This is composed of grey granite, its top is covered with numbers of large loose rocks, about one hundred feet in height. At eight miles another range parallel to last, in a gully of which I found a small running stream, with tea-tree all the way up the gully; passed through this, and at nine and a half miles another range, with a large flat between. I sent {Page 14} my brother to bring up camp, to water in first range, proceeding with Moses to Mount Squires, bearing 258°. At three miles commencement of spinifex sandhills again, the good country extending that distance. At eight miles a small grey granite hill, stony, spinifex country, timbered with box and mulga, also poplar, grevillia, and acacia. At fifteen and a half miles over similar country, camped, nothing but spinifex for the horses.

Tuesday, September 9.—Camp in spinifex. Barometer, 28.23 in.; wind, north-east. Continued on same course (258°). at 8 a.m. At eight and a half miles of similar country first rocky hill; here the mulga is very dense, with good feed. At fourteen and a half miles top of Mount Squires; these ranges extend at least thirty miles north. To the north-west the country is very level, and appears to be dense mulga; a few hills west, about twenty miles distant, and a large table land visible to the south-west; dense mulga on both sides of range. Mount Squires is on the south end of main range, composed of sandstone and granite. Found some water in a gully south-east of Mount. I should think this water would be dry in a month. Returned four miles to where there was some good feed, as the horses had nothing last night.

Wednesday, September 10.—Camp east of Mount Squires. Barometer, 28 in.; wind, east. Started at 6.45 a.m. As I had time, I searched in the Cavenagh Range, and found a very good water, one that will stand some time. I then rode to where I appointed to meet my brother, and bring camp over to-morrow. Mr. Berry and he arrived just at dark, having been detained this morning by the natives. When they had got about six miles from Moses Creek they heard a great noise behind them, and soon after about forty blacks rushed up and attacked them; it was not until they had fired several times, and the waggon and camels came up, that the blacks were got rid of; fortunately no one was hurt. I am very thankful they did not find my brother on Monday night, as he did not reach the Depôt, and had to camp alone near one of their main camps.

Thursday, September 11.—Cavenagh Ranges. Barometer, 27.87 in.; wind, east. Moved camp to water found yesterday. Waggon and camels arrived in the afternoon, having seen nothing more of the blacks. I shall leave party here in charge of Mr. Berry, and as soon as some horses are shod, proceed with my brother and Moses, and plenty of provisions, to examine country west and south-west of Mount Squires.

Friday, September 12.—Depôt No. 14, Cavenagh Range. Latitude, 26° 10' 33" south. Barometer, 27.82 in.; wind, east. Shoeing horses.

Saturday, September 13.—Depôt No. 14, Cavenagh Ranges. Barometer, 27.78 in.; wind, south-east. Shoeing horses.

Sunday, September 14.—Depôt No. 14, Cavenagh Ranges. Barometer, 27.80 in.; wind, south-east.

Monday, September 15.—Depôt No. 14.—Cavenagh Ranges. Barometer 27.95 in. Started at 8 a.m. for Mount Squires, instructing Mr. Berry to keep a sharp look-out, so as not to be surprised oy the blacks; camped at foot of mount; this water is drying very fast, I'm afraid it will not last a fortnight, it has already stopped running. Noticed numbers of native tracks following my last horse tracks down here, also thousands of shell parrots.

Tuesday, September 16.—Foot of Mount Squires. Barometer 27.85 in., wind north-west. Started at 7.30 a.m., course 195° 45' for ridge seen south of this range at six miles, the first four being over well-grassed stony mulga country, the rest spinifex sandhills to foot of ridge, which is composed of conglomerate rock and sandstone; strike north-west, dip 70 to south. I have some nice specimens of the latter, it has dark red lines through it, like the grain of wood. The country south and south-west is spinifex sandhills as far as the eye can see, not a rise of any description visible, excepting sand. I shall now change course to 264° 30' to the table-land seen from Mount Squires; at four and a-half miles passed south of a small rocky ridge, spinifex sandhills continuing to six and a-half miles; in these I noticed some very handsome blossoms on the mallee, yellow and red, measuring three inches in diameter. My brother has collected some of the yellow, but unfortunately the red and handsomest were destroyed. At thirteen miles through undulating stony country, abundance of grass, and patches of salt bush thickly timbered with mulga and acacia bushes; it again changed to spinifex and mallee sandhills; at fourteen miles a rocky hill, conglomerate and sandstone, covered with pine trees; ascended and took some bearings. I have named two points, one north and another north-west, Mounts Whitby and Herbert. Followed along low ridge on north side to 20 miles without a sign of water or a place that would hold it; sandhills to foot of ridges. This is what I took for a tableland from top of Mount Squires. The same formation as last hill, strike east, dip 19 to south. I shall now change to another ridge south and west of this one, course 267°, crossing this ridge, and camped in same spinifex sandhills at three miles. I have named these Townsend Ridges after Mr. W. Townsend. The poor horses seem to suffer terribly for want of water; the weather is so hot, the sweat has been pouring off them ever since we started this morning. I hope we shall find water early to-morrow as this is our only chance; it is hopeless to attempt the sandhills at this time of the year, the horses could not stand it.

Wednesday, September 17.—Townsend Ridges. Barometer, 28.03 in.; wind, east. Proceeded at 7 a.m. Same course to point of south ridge (267°), still no change in the country. Continued to 16 miles west point of south ridge without seeing any water or place that would hold it even after rain; a small ridge to the north-west with sandhills between, nothing but sandhills as far as the eye can see, west and south; not a native fire seen on this side of Barrow Ranges. My horses have now been nearly two days without water, and look wretched. I am afraid if they were much longer without water I should lose some of them. I must now retrace my tracks to Mount Squires. This is the hottest weather I ever experienced in September, and close nights. At the north Townsend Ridge where I last altered course I saw a likely looking place for water near Mount Whitby, and determined to risk going there instead of proceeding straight to Mount Squires, course, 4° 30'. At one and a half miles I got into a continuation of scrub, travelled through yesterday spinifex sandhills to edge; the scrub continues to hill. At seven miles crossed a stony rise, at eight miles a small gum creek going south-south-east, dry, sandy bed; at eleven miles top of hill, a deep gully at the foot but no water; left the horses here, and {Page 15} after walking about the hill for several hours without finding a sign of water, I was returning to where I left my brother, when I found a small hole of rain water in a rocky gully, enough to give the horses a little each; this was indeed a welcome find; I only wish there was sufficient to satisfy the poor brutes, I think it must be in a great measure owing to the sand and spinifex that they are so distressed, as we are obliged to punish them so severely to make them face the spinifex when their legs are raw and fly-blown. I'm afraid it is useless attempting to get out further in this dry country so late in the season. My furthest point west, latitude 26° 21' south, longitude 126° 59' east, is only 280 miles from Mr. Forrest's 1871 track, as I have neither plan nor journal of his exploration it would not be of much use to me. I have pushed out as far as it is safe in hope of finding some permanent water without success; some of those I have left behind one I'm afraid will not last long in this hot weather. The safety of my party obliges me to give up all hope of advancing further. I shall return to Moses Creek and try south, but have little hope of finding any change in the country.

Thursday, September 18.—Mount Whitby. Barometer, 28 in.; wind south. Returned to Mount Squires. Country much the same as that passed going out—well grassed mulga scrub, with patches of spinifex. I made for the north side of mount, and at eighteen miles struck a small gum creek, coming from N.E., about two miles N.W. of Mount Squires; followed this a short distance, and found a small hole of water. After resting horses here for some time, I crossed the range, and camped three miles E.N.E. of mount, on north side of a low granite hill; here I found a native well with a little water.

Friday, September 19.—Granite Hill. Barometer, 27.80 in.; wind east. Returned to depôt and found all well. Nothing more has been seen of the natives.

Saturday, September 20.—Depôt No. 14, Cavenagh Ranges.—Barometer, 27.95 in.; wind east. Resting horses.

Sunday, September 21.—Depôt No. 14, Cavenagh Ranges. Barometer, 27.95 in.; wind east. Very hot.


Monday, September 22.—Depot, No. 14, Cavenagh Range. Barometer, 27.95 in.: wind east. Travelled to a claypan nine miles, and camped. Party going half way to Moses Creek.

Tuesday, September 23.—Claypan. Barometer, 27.85 in.; wind north-easterly, hot. Proceeded to Moses Creek. It is too much like rain to kill to-night. The water here is drying up fast. I am glad I decided to return, as there would not have been a drop in another month.

Wednesday, September 24.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.77 in.; wind north. Killed a bullock this afternoon.

Thursday, September 25.—Barometer 27.8 in.; wind south. Cutting up and drying meat; the weather is very unfavorable. I start to-morrow to examine the country to the south.

Friday, September 26.—Barometer, 27.9 in.; wind south-east; cloudy. Started at 7 a.m., taking my brother and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party; course, 176° 30' from camp. Stony rises and flats for nine miles, and a great deal of spinifex, timber, mulga, and acacia bushes. At eighteen miles, through thick mulga and spinifex, a few sandhills; the country changes to sandhills. At twenty miles, a high sand ridge. I could see nothing to induce me to proceed on this course, so I changed to a very high sandhill bearing 215° which I reached in seven miles. From it I could see in every direction spinifex sandhills, extending twenty miles east, south, and west. The only hills visible are east and north-east—a high range bearing 99°, about thirty miles distant. This I have named the Blyth Range. I have now given up all hope of getting farther west, so I shall return to Moses Creek to-morrow, and as soon as the meat is dry retrace my track to Mount Charles and try to find a route to the telegraph line east. Returned five miles and camped.

Saturday, September 27.—Sandhills. Barometer 28.03 in.; wind north; still a few clouds hanging about. Proceeded to Moses Creek. The meat is drying slowly. No natives have shown themselves.

Sunday, September 28.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.7 in.; wind from north; extremely hot. Thermometer, 98° under a good shade.

Monday, September 29.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.82 in; thermometer, 100° in the shade; wind north. Drying meat.

Tuesday, September 30.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.84 in.; wind north. Drying meat.

Wednesday October 1st.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.78 in.; wind north-east. Drying meat.

Thursday, October 2.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.79 in; wind south. I shall start for water near Trew's Gap to-morrow, and from there proceed along south side of Mann Ranges. The jerked meat obtained from the two bullocks only weighed 220lbs. when ready for packing.

Friday, October 3.—Moses Creek. Barometer, 27.7 in.; wind, south-east. Started at 8 a.m. for the first water in the Tomkinson Ranges. Found it very nearly dry, but obtained enough for our horses. The more I see of this country, the more thankful I am that I decided to return, instead of wasting precious time in trying to explore the dry country at my farthest out point.

Saturday, October 4—First water in the Tomkinson Ranges. Barometer, 27.37 in.; wind south-west; cloudy morning. Proceeded to Knuckey's Gully and camped. Found plenty of water, still running at head of gully, the first we have seen since leaving here likely to stand any time. The clouds soon cleared off, and it turned out very hot.

Sunday, October 5.—Knuckey's Gully. Barometer, 27.55 in.; wind south-west. A. fine cool day.

Monday, October 6.—Knuckey's Gully. Barometer, 27.67 in.; wind east. Travelled to a gully six miles west of Nilen's Gully, and camped. Found plenty of water.

Tuesday, October 7.—Six miles west of Nilen's Gully. Barometer, 27.45 in; wind east. Proceeded to a creek west of Trew's Gap this was running strongly when we first passed it, but has since dried for more than a mile; it is however still running for a considerable distance, and I fancy the water is permanent. I shall remain here until the waggon and camels arrive. and then examine the country as far as Mount Hardy.

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Wednesday, October 8.—Creek west of Trew's Gap. Barometer, 27.2 in.; wind very strong from the north. Native fires in all directions. I shall visit Mount Hardy, to-morrow, as party have arrived.

Thursday. October 9.—Creek west of Trew's Gap. Barometer, 27.08 in.; wind north. Started at 6.30 a.m., taking Kamran. The good country extends for three miles, then sandy, spinifex and oak country with mallee, and patches of well grassed mulga to 13 miles. The commencement of the good country, about the Deering Hills, 18 miles top of Mount Hardy, found it to be 1,100 feet above the surrounding country. Rock chiefly grey granite. Strike south-east; dip, 37° to east. The country appears good for some distance to the south, with a good deal of spinifex; a long range extending from 160° to 200° about forty miles distant. A high point bearing 88°, I have named Mount Caroline. Native fires all round. Found a running stream on the north side at foot of mount in a rocky gully.

Friday, October 10th.—Creek west of Trew's Gap. Barometer, 27.1 in.; wind south-west; morning cloudy. Started at 7.25 a.m. Course 142° 30' for a point of range; at two miles first point, two and a half second point. Changed to 110°. still along range, one and a quarter miles to a point of range, and another at two miles. At three miles a gum creek, coming through a flat extending two miles north into range; at four miles point of another spur. Changed to 90'; at two miles another gum creek, and at two and a half and five miles spurs of range. Nice fiats between these spurs, with abundance of grass and herbs. At six miles changed to 34°, and at one mile struck a gum creek coming from north-west. I obtained water by digging, and found plenty of surface water at its head. I am obliged to make short stages, as I am travelling with the whole party. I noticed a large blacks' camp to-day. I should say there were at least fifty wurlies. All the country passed over to-day well grassed; a few patches of thick mulga, and a little spinifex.

Saturday, October 11.—Gully in Mann Ranges. Barometer, 27.32 in.; wind, east. Still cloudy. Very stormy during the night, but only a few drops of rain fell. Proceeded along range at 7.15 a.m., on course 166° 10', to the point of a low spur, which I reached in one and a half miles, passing along the east side of creek. Changed to 96° 15', for a small peak on one of the ranges. At three and a half miles passed a spur, at seven and a half and nine and a half miles gum creeks; at ten and a half miles top of peak. Changed to 40°; at two miles struck a gum creek, which I followed for half a mile, and found water. The country is similar to that passed over yesterday; abundance of grass everywhere, and running water in almost every gully.

Sunday, October 12.—Gully in Mann Ranges. Latitude, 26° 7' 54"; barometer, 27.35 in.; wind, east. Still cloudy. Height of camp above sea level, 1,800 feet. Ascended a high point in the afternoon, and obtained a good view of a large range to the east. (The Musgrave.)

Monday, October 13.—Gully in Mann Ranges Barometer, 27.36 in.; wind east. Started at 7.15 a.m. with Moses, to see if I could find water at the east end of these ranges, at which to form a depôt, whilst I proceeded to the Musgrave Range—course, 89° 30', from the small peak on Saturday's course. At two miles, creek; at three miles, passing between a small detached hill and range, changed to 82°, between a small range and the main one; at one and a half miles, a gum creek; at four miles a large gum creek, with sandy bed, which appears to drain a great part of this end of the range, coming down a very deep gorge, and going away south as far as I can see: this is the only creek I have seen that extends more than a few miles from the range; it is, however, soon terminated in the sandhills. Continued to seven miles to a low range, the south-east extremity of the Mann Ranges. Near the end of the main range I found a nice stream of water in a deep gully; I have named this Day's Gully. I shall bring my camp here to-morrow.

Wednesday [sic], October 14.—Gully in Mann Ranges. Barometer, 27.35 in.; wind north-east; still cloudy. Proceeded to Day's Gully and camped. Found the country at foot of this portion of the ranges to be 1,796 feet above sea level.

Thursday [sic], October 15.—Day's Gully, Mann Ranges. Lat., 26° 8' 35" south; barometer, 27.17 in.; wind north-east. Proceeded to peak at east end of the range, taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. Course from peak, 101° 30'. At two miles sandy country commences, and this, with patches of spinifex, continues to thirteen miles, to the foot of some low hills. Seventeen miles to top of a detached range; no sign of water. Changed course to 85° 30', to a small peaked hill; at nine miles, top. A range commences at two miles north of course. Changed to 68°, and after passing through some rough hills for five miles, reached the foot of a high part of the Musgrave Ranges; still no water; all the gullies are quite dry. I now altered course to 251°, in direction of some rocks two miles distant, and at these I at last found water in some holes made by the natives, for which I was extremely glad, as the day has been intensely hot. I noticed a number of grevillia flowers lying about, which the natives must have brought from some distance to eat at the water. I find that there is a far greater extent of good country near these ranges than any of those I have previously explored—the last fifteen miles I passed to-day being well grassed and lightly timbered with mulga and corkwood. Extending south to Mount Caroline, and from eight to ten miles to the north of course, large patches of this country have been lately burnt by the natives; some parts burnt less recently are beautifully green. Travelled forty miles to-day, but the horses have not felt it nearly so much as they would twenty miles of spinifex sandhills.

Thursday, October 16.—Musgrave Ranges, Native Wells. Barometer, 26.85 in.; wind south-east. There was a slight thunderstorm before daylight, but only a few drops of rain fell. Started at 6.30 a.m., on course 124° 30', and at two and a-half miles, after searching about, found a nice stream of water on the south aide of the range, which I named Lungley's Gully. I shall return to depôt at once and bring up the camp. Returning, we had a most unpleasant ride for about eight miles through burning mulga scrub; the trees were falling in all directions, and quantities of dead wood blazing on the ground. We arrived at depôt at 7.30 p m. Some natives had been seen about here; they have burned the grass all around.

Friday, October 17.—Day's Gully, Mann Ranges, Depôt No. 15. Barometer, 27.35 in.; wind south-east. The Mann and Tomkinson Ranges average about 1,100 feet above the surrounding country, and 2,800 above sea level. Proceeded to water at the Musgrave Ranges, and arrived just before sundown.

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Saturday, October 18.—Musgrave Ranges, Lungley's Gully, Depôt No. 16. Barometer, 27.27 in.; wind south-east. I walked up the gully some distance this morning, and found that the water only commenced half a mile higher than where I first struck it. There is a good stream running, and bullrushes along the banks.

Sunday, October 19.—Musgrave Ranges, Lungley's Gully. (Depôt No. 16). Barometer 27.17 in., wind east.

Monday, October 20.—Musgrave Ranges, Lungley's Gully. (Depôt No. 16). Barometer 27.16 in., wind east. Started at 7 a.m., to find water, near a high point of range I have named Mount Morris. Commenced course from my furthest east point, for the south end of a spur bearing 97° 45'; this I reached in 5 miles, passing over a well grassed flat, with mulga on both sides. Changed to 31°, at 6 miles, in direction of a deep gully, and at 2½ miles found enough water for the camp, but with a very rocky approach. Examined several other gullies in the afternoon, but they were all dry. The rest of the camp arrived during the afternoon. I ascended a high hill near camp, from which I took bearings to Ayers Rock and Allanah's Hill. Mount Morris bears 34° 30' about six miles distant, I obtained a good view of the surrounding country. The ranges appear to be very much broken, splendid flats between, of rich alluvial soil; the one towards Mount Morris is about five miles wide, and from ten to fifteen miles long. The view east is completely shut out by a higher range to the south-south-east. South, and south-south-west are broken hills, extending about forty miles, and lightly timbered mulga country as far as I could see clearly. Saw numbers of native smokes in these hills. I shall visit Mount Morris to-morrow.

Tuesday, October 21.—Musgrave Ranges, Water in Gully. Latitude 26° 14' 27" south. Barometer 26.88 in., wind from the north, and very hot. At 7 a.m. started for Mount Morris, at three miles I noticed a thick clump of gum trees to the east, at a point where all the creeks in this flat join; turned for this, and at one mile came to a creek covered with high bullrushes, and a strong stream running—this is evidently a spring. I found that it only continued for one mile; then washes out upon a large flat to the south. I followed the creek north for a short distance, when, to my extreme surprise, I came upon some horse tracts (which I suppose are those of Mr. Ernest Giles's party). I followed them for twenty miles, first to the north side of ranges, and then through some gaps to the south side. This is very annoying, as they appear to come from the Neales, the route I had chosen by which to return to the telegraph line. I shall now have to try the north side of the ranges, and avoid following the tracks if possible. Returned to the camp. The heat has been something fearful to-day.

Wednesday, October 22.—Musgrave Ranges. Water in gully. Barometer, 27.03 in.; wind, south-east. I shall now remove my camp to the spring found yesterday. Sent my brother and Kamran further on in search of water, whilst I ascended Mount Morris; I found it to be 1,830 feet above the surrounding country, and 4,113 feet above sea level. Took bearings to Mount Conner, Mount Olga, Ayers Rock, and Mount Woodroffe. I found the variation to be 15° to the west here. A very high portion of these ranges extending for about thirty miles west of north, probably about 2,000 feet high; beautiful country in every direction. This portion of the range is composed of very coarse granite. Strike of rock east; dip 35° to south.

Thursday, October 23.—Musgrave Ranges, Spring. Latitude, 26° 12' 9" south. Barometer, 27.0 in.; wind, east. This camp is 2,250 feet above sea level. At 10 a.m. my brother arrived, having found a spring similar to this one at another of Mr. Giles's(?) camps; he had seen some natives who appeared friendly, and showed him some water in a gully near. I shall move my camp to the spring this afternoon. Started on course 100°, at five miles and a-half, passing over a flood flat, came to a small detached hill, at eight miles top of a saddle in range; the range extending five miles further south; at nine miles struck a small gum creek, going north-east for half a-mile to its junction with main creek coming from north-west; at nine and a-half and ten miles crossed same going east; at eleven and a-half miles struck creek, going south-west. Changed course 125° 30'; at two miles struck creek. At three miles Spring (or water-holes,) Here found an old camp but no brand of any kind.

Friday, October 24.—Musgrave Ranges, spring or waterholes. Latitude, 26° 16' 12" south. Barometer, 27.18 in.; wind, north-east. Started at 7 a.m., taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. Course 14° 30', passing up a well-grassed flat going through ranges from south to north side. At three and a halt' miles changed to 47° 30', crossing some low rough spurs covered with dense mulga. At three miles a wide watercourse going north. At four miles to point of a low range; from it I could see some ridges to the north, about five miles distant, going east, with mulga and acacia bush flats between, and also some small ridges north and east. Changed course to 77°, along north side of ranges. At three-quarters of a mile struck a creek going north, with some nice rocky holes full of water and a strong stream running; firm sandy soil, stony in places, well-grassed and densely timbered with mulga and acacia bushes. I have named this Beare's Creek. At two miles a large teatree creek going north-west, and joining Beare's Creek. At four miles a new zig-zag brush fence which the natives use for catching wallaby, and a large native camp not long deserted. Five and a half miles, point of spur. Changed course to 81°; the strike of the rocks on the north side of these ranges is east, and dip 14° to south. At three miles crossed creek, and at three and a quarter miles spur of range. Changed to 103°; at five miles passing over a large cottonbush flat, and through dense acacia scrub to point of another spur; from here the ranges extend south-east to Mount Woodroffe, and then north-east for a considerable distance. Turned back from here to examine the gullies for water, I passed to-day; arrived at Beam's Creek after dark without finding a drop. Clouds rising to the west and south-west.

Saturday, October 25.—Musgrave Ranges, Beare's Creek. Barometer, 26.98 in.; wind, south; light showers during the night; it is very hot and sultry this morning. Returned to camp. Soon after I left, yesterday. twenty-five natives came to the camp; they seemed very peaceably inclined. Removed camp to Beare's Creek this afternoon.

Sunday, October 26.—Musgrove Ranges, Depôt No. 18, Beare's Creek. Latitude. 26° 10' 46" south. Barometer, 27.12 in.; wind, south-east. A few drops of rain fell during the night.

Monday, October 27.—Musgrave Ranges, Depôt No. 18, Beare's Creek. Barometer, {Page 18} 27.18 in.; wind, east. At 8 a.m. proceeded along the north side of range taking my brother, and leaving Mr. Berry in charge of party. Started from my farthest east course on Friday. 85° 30' in direction of a hare granite hill (Mount. Woodroffe bears 117° 16'). At three and a half miles to watercourse, with clay bed; nine miles to a teatree creek going north by east; at twelve and a half miles reached the hill, after passing several rough granite rises; it is 900 feet above the surrounding country; there are a few gums and a little spinifex growing on this as also on the surrounding hills. I could see a peculiar hill to the east-north-east which I have named Mitchell's Nob, apparently bare granite, and considerably higher than this. Nothing but dense scrub in the direction of Mount Conner, and as far north-east as I can see, after getting clear of the granite hills, there is a large gum creek between here and Mount Woodroffe, bearing north of east along range, and passing through some nice open flats. I followed down one of its branches from here, and found a small hole of water, very brackish, and camped. Course, 156° 30', four miles.

Tuesday. October 28.—Musgrave Ranges, Gum Creek. Barometer, 27.18 in.; wind, east. Started at 6.45 a.m., on course 103°. For two miles along creek to its junction with the main creek (which I have named Whittell's Creek), and one corning in from the south-south-east. Mount Woodroffe bears 200° 30', Granite Hill 307°. Changed course at this point to 46° 30' along creek, which is now getting very large, and has a great deal of excellent gum timber growing on its banks. Crossed it at half a mile and one mile, and found water at both crossings, the latter has a nice hole of water with bulrushes growing around it. Again crossed creek at three miles bearing north-north-east, and flooding a large saltbush flat at five miles. At six miles low granite rises; nine and a half miles to top of spur, the last few miles over large saltbush flats and dry claypans. Changed to a deep gully bearing 114°. At seven miles crossing a spur of range and an acacia scrub flat. Noticed some fresh tracks of natives making for a gully, so I changed course to 133° in that direction, and at half-mile saw a number of blacks on the side of a hill to our right. After some trouble we managed to get within speaking distance, and they showed my brother a small hole of water or "carpee" close by. and pointed to a deep gully at a little distance to show us where there was more. We gave them some damper and lucifers, and they seemed greatly pleased, especially with the lucifers, which they stuck through holes in their noses. I proceeded to the deep gully, and at two and a half miles found a splendid hole of water, about forty feet wide by fifty feet long and twelve feet deep; when full it would be about sixty by eighty feet, and eighteen feet in depth. I have named this Harry's reservoir. Returned to the water in Whittell's Creek.

Wednesday, October 29th.—Musgrave Ranges. Whittell's Creek. Barometer, 27.12 in.; wind north-east. Thunder during the night but no rain. Returned to the depôt at Beare's Creek to-day. Fearfully hot day.

Thursday, October 30th.—Musgrave Ranges, Beare's Creek. Proceeded to Whittell's Creek. Country around Beare's Creek 2,098 feet above sea level.

Friday, October 31st.—Musgrave Ranges, Whittell's Creek. Latitude, 26° 13' 51" south; barometer, 27.32 in.; wind south-west. Shoeing horses. Nilen met with an accident that might have been very serious; he was thrown out of the waggon, going over some rocks, one wheel passed over him but fortunately only bruised his back; it must have been as it jumped off a rock.

Saturday, November 1st.—Musgrave Ranges, Whittell's Creek. Barometer, 27.45 in.; wind south-east. Travelled to Harry's Reservoir; for about one and a half miles the gully is terribly rough, obliging me to camp the camels and waggon that distance from the water.

Sunday, November 2nd.—Musgrave Ranges, Harry's Reservoir. Latitude, 26° 13' 1" south; barometer, 27.32 in.; wind east. The ants here are a terrible pest, every place is covered with them, rocks, bushes, and sand, and it is nearly impossible to sleep at night for them crawling about. Ascended a high bill which I have named Mount Everard, after the Hon. Wm. Everard; it is 1,650 feet above the surrounding country, and 3,850 feet above sea level. I find that I am getting near the end of these ranges, they seem to be breaking up to the eastward, but continue for about twenty miles to the E.N.E., and for about the same distance to the S.W. There is good country everywhere between the ranges which average about 1,500 feet above the surrounding country, and 3,700 above the sea level; they are composed chiefly of granite.

Monday, November 3rd.—Musgrave Ranges, Harry's Reservoir, Depôt No. 19. Barometer, 27.2 in.; wind north-east. Started at 9 a.m. on course 17° taking Moses; to try and find water near the east end of ranges. Commenced course from the east end of course 114° of Tuesday. At two and a half miles through thick acacia scrub, changed to 47°, passing through a gap between two ranges. At six miles top of a low detached hill, the last two miles over well grassed sandhills; changed course to 129°; these hills extend north for five miles, and north-east for ten or fifteen miles. At three and a half miles after examining numerous gullies, changed to 62°. At one and a hall miles passing through a gap at the foot of a small rocky peak, I turned more south, and after examining about twenty gullies found a rock waterhole nearly full, but the rocks being very slippery prevented my getting the horses within fifty yards of it. Watered the horses here with a bucket and camped.

Tuesday, November 4th.—Musgrave Ranges, rock waterhole, east of Mount Everard. Barometer, 26.88 in.; wind north-east. Started at 6.45 a.m. on course of 119° for half a mile down creek; then 85° for three miles, crossing a low saddle; at one mile an open flat well grassed; changed to 58° 30" passing between two ranges. At two miles to a small teatree creek, three miles point of a spur from the south. At three and a half miles again crossed creek bending to the north. At four miles changed to 19°, following creek which ends at one mile; changed to 104°. At one and three quarter miles a granite rise bearing south: native smokes in all directions; returned five miles on last course to examine a deep gully, coming out of which, I lamed my horse; he got his hind feet fast in some rocks, but fortunately he wrenched off both his hind shoes, or he would most probably have broken one of his lege. I must now return to depôt. Changed course to 261° to end of one and a half mile course yesterday, which I reached in one and three quarter miles.

Wednesday, November 5.—Musgrave Ranges, Harry's Reservoir, Depôt No. {Page 19} Barometer 27.10 in., wind south-west. Proceeded with my brother and fresh horses, to the rock water boles east of Mount Everard, and camped.

Thursday, November 6.—Musgrave Ranges. Rock waterholes east of Mount Everard. Barometer 27.23 in.; wind S.E. Started at 6.55 a.m., on course 119°, to point of hill from south; at two miles changed to 123° 30', passing over well grassed sandy country, with thick acacia scrub in places. At 21 miles, another range; high ranges south at two and four miles, changed to 93° at three miles, passing down a small teatree creek, and between some low rocky hills, struck a gum creek coming from the S.W., with sandy bed. I noticed horse tracks in bed of creek, going S.W. Changed here to 60° 30', to follow down creek, in hope of finding water; crossed it at three and a-half, four, and six miles; at seven miles top of a granite hill; near last crossing of creek found one of Mr. Giles's(?) camps, and a hole made for watering horses. Returned to this water, and soon afterwards some natives made their appearance, one of whom made himself useful in helping us to water our horses; the hole is now nearly dry, there only being a small quantity on the clay bottom, under the sand, and it took us two hours to obtain enough for our three horses. I gave the blackfellow a colored handkerchief, and he came on to show us more "carpee." At one mile we came up to some more blacks; here be was very anxious for us to camp, showing us a small well and a shady tree; we, however, induced him to come farther on, and proceeded down creek on course 55°, crossing it at two and four miles; at six miles it turns N.E.; here our black friend showed us some more wells, but with very little water in them, he evidently thought we were very difficult to satisfy, as he would come no farther. We followed the creek down until dark, when we came to one of Mr. Giles's(?) camps; here we obtained a little water by digging, and camped. The creek runs out in about three miles from this.

Friday, November 7.—Mr. Giles's(?) camp at east end of creek. Barometer, 27.62 in.; wind east. Started at seven a.m., on course 91° 30', from top of a small detached hill. Could see nothing but scrub in every direction. At eleven miles, after several times crossing Mr. Giles's(?) tracks, came to another hill. Passed through dense mulga and over a few sandhills at six miles; ground sandy and well grassed. From here I can wee gum timber to the south. I shall go to this, in the hope of being able to avoid Mr. Giles's(?) tracks, which now appear to come from the Stevenson. Course, 140°, at three and three-quarter miles, creek with sandy bed, bearing east. Changed to 95° down creek, and at one mile altered course to 60°; at three and a half miles, to top of a granite rise; on its north side I could see a number of detached granite hills, about three miles to the east, bearing north-east I now followed the creek without keeping a course; at ten miles it turns sharp round to the south. I have named this the Marryat. We here caught sight of a native coming into the creek. He stopped directly we called out to him, and he pointed down the creek, calling out, "carpee," and made signs that he would show us where it was, starting off at a good six miles an hour. We followed him, and at one mile he showed us a native well. Here he called some more blacks to help him water our horses. These natives call a creek "caroo"; they pointed down this calling out, "carpee caroo! carpee earns," to make as understand that there was water further down. I gave them each a handkerchief and some lucifers, and they directly returned the compliment by presenting my brother and myself with a bone hairpin each. Camped at well.

Saturday, November 8.—The Marryat. Barometer, 27.83 in.; wind east. At daylight our black friends returned, bringing with them an old preserved meat tin, which must have been carried from the telegraph line. At seven a.m. proceeded down the creek; at ten miles, top of a flint and limestone rise, I found two more wells, but very little water. I must now return to the depôt, as I brought only three days' rations with me, and have already been away nearly four. Course, 306°, crossed creek at one mile, going south, passing through acacia bush scrub; the surface of the ground is undulating, and covered with pieces of broken flint and limestone; five and a-half miles to last wells found; at seven and three-quarter miles, sandhills. Changed course to 277° 30'; creek close to foot of sandhill; at one and a-half miles struck it, and crossed it at two and a-half; crossed same going south, and near water at our last night's camp. At seven miles again struck creek where it turns north, and crossed it at ten and eleven miles; at the latter we found a native well, but the water was quite salt. Camped here.

Sunday, November 9.—The Marryat, Salt Well. Barometer, 27.75 in.; wind south-east. It was very cloudy during the night, but no rain fell. Started at 6.45 a.m., on course 273°; at one mile struck creek, and crossed it at one and three-quarters, four, and six and three-quarter miles, creek at this last point coming from west-south-west. At seventeen miles, crossing well grassed stony and sandy ground, with a few sandhills, and densely timbered with mulga and acacia; I struck the creek Mr. Giles(?) camped on, and changed my course to 238°, to strike point at five miles on my former course of 55°. Returning to doped, I found a small stream of water in a rocky gully half a mile to the south of the furthest point I reached on Tuesday last. Arrived at depôt late at night, having ridden 54 miles to-day.

Monday, November 10.—Musgrave Ranges, Harry's Reservoir, Depôt No. 19. Barometer, 27.36 in.; wind south-east. Removed my camp to where I had camped the waggon and Affghans. To-morrow I intend taking my brother, Winnall, and Kamran, the two latter to sink a well in the Marryat, whilst I trace it further down.

Tuesday, November 11—Musgrave Ranges, Harry's Reservoir. Barometer, 27.25 in.; wind north-east, Proceeded to the water I found on Sunday last. I have named this place Figtree Gully, as there is a very large native flgtree growing about fifty yards to the north of the water. Camped here.

Wednesday. November 12th.—Musgrave Ranges, Figtree Gully. Barometer, 27.35 in,; wind east. As Winnall and Kamran had gone on to follow our return tracks, I determined to examine the country to the south-west. Proceeded from the hill near Mr. Giles' camp(?) west. Camp on creek, on course 121°. At five miles to top of a rise, continued on south-west, and at three miles struck head of creek formed by a large saltbush flat, followed this, and at ten miles found wee whale water, but very brackish, and salt water at intervals to eighteen miles. I have named this the "Agnes." I must now return to the "Marryat" to meet Winnall. Course 213°, at three miles granite ridge bearing east. Al five miles junction of two small creeks, {Page 20} branches of the "Agnes." At seven miles some hills. At ten miles camped, hills one mile to the east. Country well grassed, stony in places and densely timbered.

Thursday, November 13th.—Granite hills. Barometer, 27.65 in.; wind south-east. Proceeded at 6 a.m. on course 21°. At one and a quarter miles changed to 50° from the top of a flat topped hill, and at six miles struck tracks close to my Saturday night's camp at the salt well. I overtook the camels close to where I wanted to have a well sunk; cleared away the sand, and the water coming in very fast, I gave instructions to sink a large hole to collect it instead of a well.

Friday, November 14th.—The Marryat. Barometer, 28 in.; wind south-east. Started at 6.30 a.m. on course 133°, from farthest point reached on Saturday last for point of table land. At four and a half miles over sandy mulga country, crossed the Marryat going E.N.E., a small claybottomed watercourse coming in from the south-west. At eight and a half miles point of table-land, the last three miles stony and a good deal of saltbush this table-land is composed of flint. Changed course to the more northern of two flat-topped hills, bearing 109[°] 30', which I reached at six miles, over stony ground covered with thick mulga; it is a low rise bearing south-east. Changed here to 80° in order to strike the creek again, did so at five miles and crossed it, still the same sandy bed, very wide, and with sandhills on its eastern side. Changed to a small table-topped hill bearing 160.; a number of table-lands are visible to the south. At one and a half miles crossed creek, and at three and a quarter miles again struck it, going south-west. At five miles a gum creek coming from W.N.W. At six miles large claypans. At eight miles changed course to 90° to strike creek again. At two miles I did so, and followed it for one mile, and camped without water.

Saturday, November 15th.—The Marryat. Barometer, 28.38 in.; wind south-east. Proceeded at 7 a.m. on course 179° in direction of a small hill. At two and a half miles crossed creek bearing west. At three and three quarter miles reached the hill, from which I could see table-land south, extending for a considerable distance, both east and west; changed to a table-topped hill for which I was steering yesterday, bearing 167°; I decided to risk going to this, and, if I could see the junction of the Marryat and the Agnes from it, to go as far as that. At three miles reached top of hill and could see the Agnes about three miles south; reached it in three and three quarter miles, and was greatly disappointed to find it sandy and very flat, and with no sign of water whatever. Turned for the junction which I reached in two and a half miles; here it looks still worse, it is very fiat and the flood mark is over a mile wide. I am now forty-five miles away from the last water found, and it is blazing hot today, so I must make as much haste back as possible and chance finding some; fortunately we saw some natives near my last nights camp who showed us water; the horses were dreadfully thirsty, and it is not to be wondered at in this weather. Returned a short distance and camped. The blacks about this part are the smartest looking lot I ever saw, both young and old, all well conditioned, and some with regular features; they had beard of the telegraph line, which they call "whitefellow wheelbarrow curteyabba."

Sunday, November 16th.—Mulga scrub. Barometer, 28.22 in.; wind south-west. Returned to where I left Winnall and Kamran; found that they had finished the hole, but there was a poor supply of water in it. I shall send my brother and Winnall back with instructions to bring up my camp, whilst I go further down the creek with Kamran and the camels.

Monday, November 17.—Waterhole in the Marryat. Barometer 27.84 in., wind south-east. Started at 6.15 a.m. for water found north of the junction of the Marryat and Agnes, taking Kamran. Arrived at the well and camped; found the blacks had all gone.

Tuesday, November 18.—Native well in the Marryat, north of junction. Barometer 28.17 in., wind south-east. Started at 6 40 a.m. from junction; course 185°; at one and a-half miles found wells with wet sand, but no water; at three miles changed to 129°, three miles over well grassed sandhills to the top of a high one, and changed for a detached table-land bearing 115°; at one and a-half miles crossed the main creek (which I call the "Alberga"); on its eastern side are well grassed mulga sandhills, and a ridge about three miles to the east, bearing south-east; at six miles crossed a single bullock-track (about six weeks old) going south; at seven miles a large branch of the Alberga with sandy bed, coming from the south-west; at ten miles top of hill; dense poorly grassed mulga scrub the whole distance; seeing the creek about two miles to the east, passing point of the table-land, I changed to 76°; mulga scrub to the Table-lands, south and south-west distant about ten miles; at one and a-half miles found plenty of water by digging; shall camp here and go farther down to-morrow. This water will last for a considerable time, and a very slight shower would fill it from some clay-pans north of the table-land.

Wednesday, November 19.—Water near table-land in the Alberga. Barometer 28.37 in., wind north. Proceeded down creek at 6.20 a.m., course 110° for a high red bank; at three miles along creek changed to 123° 30', at three miles from top of sandhill, crossing creek at half and two and a-half miles, creek going south; altered course to 143°, crossing creek at two and three-quarter miles, and struck it again at four and a-half miles; at ten and a-half miles through poorly grassed mulga country, a large gum creek coming from west-south-west, sandy bed; at twelve miles, the last one and a-half miles over stony rises and thick acacia bushes, top of table-land; took bearings; junction of last creek with the Alberga, bears 53° 30', three miles off; table-land south and west, only a few miles off, those south can east for a considerable distance. Changed course to a low rise bearing 93° 95'; at six miles over stony ground, a small gum creek from south-south-west, with stony bed, and some shallow holes but no water; tableland three miles south; six and three-quarter miles top of rise; could see creek bearing away east; changed to 63° a bend in creek, at one and a-half miles; found plenty of water by digging where the natives had made drinking-places for the emu; at three miles camped.

Thursday, November 20.—The Alberga emu drinking-place. Barometer 28.50 in., wind south-east. Continued down creek on course 91°; at three miles over firm sandy ground, covered with dense mulga, reached top of a long rise bearing north; changed course to strike some where it passes between some stony rises; at two and a-half miles over stony ground, with clay-pans and open patches to top of rise bearing north; here changed course to 10°, and in one mile struck the creek going east-south-east. Returned to emu drinking-place; on our way we {Page 21} saw some natives, who followed us to the water—three men and a lubra; they spoke of some water lower down the creek, calling it "Powie"; two of them were young men, who wore their hair in most elaborate chignons. The heat is fearful, there are a few clouds rising to the west. I wish it would rain. People travelling would be wise to avoid using water from these drinking places, or any small hole of surface water, as the blacks often put in some preparation to stupify the emu. Returned fifteen miles and camped.

Friday, November 21.—The Alberga. Barometer 28.42 in., wind east. Still cloudy, but intensely hot. Continued our journey at 6.30 a.m.; camped at four miles north of the junction of the Agnes and Marryat. I must get back to the waterhole in the Marryat, to meet my party, as I am anxious about the water.

Saturday, November 22.—Four miles north of junction of the Marryat and Agnes. Barometer 28.25 in., wind east; still cloudy; thunder to the west. Started at 6 a.m., and arrived at water-hole before dark, having ridden forty-three miles. Found my party all there, but the horses had nearly drained the hole, there was none left for the loading camels, and I only managed to get a little for those we had been riding. I shall have to push through to water found in the Alberga, sixty miles distant. A shower of rain would be of great service to us just now.

Sunday, November 23.—Waterhole in the Marryat. Barometer, 27 95 in.; wind, north-east; cloudy, and every appearance of rain. Started at 6.40 a.m. with the horses, and travelled forty-seven miles to some good feed south of the junction.

Monday, December 24.—Junction of the Marryat and Agnes. Latitute, 26° 39' 29" south. Barometer, 28.32 in.; wind, north-east. Proceeded to water near tableland in the Alberga, where we arrived at 10 a.m., and watered the horses. There is evidently a good supply in the sand. The horses have travelled 130 miles with only one drink, and then not enough to satisfy some of them. A thunderstorm during the afternoon, but only a few drops of rain. I have ridden 630 miles during the last three weeks to enable me to get 130 miles on my course, and without one day out of the saddle.

Tuesday, November 25.—Water near table land in the Alberga. Barometer, 28.32 in.; wind, north. Latitude, 26° 44' 57". The camels arrived at 10 a.m., having been seven days without water; all they had since leaving Harry's Reservoir (130 miles distant) was from the salt well in the Marryat, which is so bad that a horse will not touch it. There seems to be no danger of their drinking too much, as they all went to the water and drank till they were satisfied. It is impossible to praise these animals too much, or the Affghans, who have always been most willing to do anything they could. The camels, as beasts of burden, are unequalled; they carry 400 pounds each with the greatest ease, over almost any kind of country, and are always at hand when wanted. As far as riding is concerned I cannot judge of their capabilities, as all those I have are for loading, and it is just like taking a waggon horse to ride.

Wednesday, November 26.—Water near table land in the Alberga (Depôt No. 20). Barometer, 28.34 in.; wind, south-east. The waggon arrived at 1 o'clock p.m., all the horses very thirsty. I think the worst portion of the road is now past. I shall, however, be obliged to remain here to-morrow to spell the horses and camels.

Thursday, November 27.—Water near tableland in the Alberga (Depôt No. 20). Barometer, 28.23 in.; wind, east. Resting horses.

Friday, November 28.—Water near tableland in the Alberga (Depôt No, 20). Barometer, 28.30 in.; wind, east. Resting and shoeing horses.

Saturday, November 29.—Water near tableland in the Alberga (Depôt No. 20). Barometer, 28.25 in.; wind, east. Proceeded to water lower down. Extremely hot; a thunderstorm towards sundown, but no rain.

Sunday, November 30.—The Alberga. Latitude, 26° 56' 39" south. Barometer, 28.42 in.; wind, east. About sundown a thunderstorm and some light showers; still very hot.

Monday, December 1.—The Alberga. Barometer 28.50 in.; wind, east. Removed party to the emu drinking-place, six miles lower down the creek. At 1 p.m. proceeded with my brother and Moses along the Alberga, on course 83°, from farthest point reached whilst out with Kamran and the camels. At two and a half miles west bank of creek. Changed course to 121°, along creek, and at two miles found plenty of water in the sand. Continued to four and a quarter miles, then changed to 86°. At three and a quarter miles top of a stony rise. Changed to 360° to strike creek, which I did in one mile. Found water in the sand and camped. Country passed over this afternoon undulating, stony, and well grassed, timbered with mulga and bushes. Passing a large native camp to-day we noticed some bullock bones, and near to it tracks of a black running a bullock. It is most likely the same that I saw the tracks of near here before.

Tuesday, December 2.—The Alberga. Water in sand. South latitude 26° 55' 5"; barometer 28.26 in., wind south, thunderstorm coming up from W.S.W. Sent my brother back to bring up waggon and camels to the water. Also instructions for Mr. Berry to come on with the horses on Wednesday, whilst I proceeded down the creek with Moses. Course 115° from top of stony rise; at half mile edge of stony plain, between the rise and a table-land south. At two and a-quarter miles I was astonished to see tracks of two bullock drays and alight trap, apparently going west, they are very old, and only visible near a small claypan. At five miles passing over well grassed stony plains, a low table land close to west bank of creek, which here comes from N.E. Changed to a red sandhill, bearing 99° at three and a-half miles reached the top, crossing creek at its foot; spinifex sandhills on either side of creek. Changed to 139° 30 for east point of table-land extending west a long distance, another S.W., about eight miles distant. At three miles, over spinifex sandhills, crossed the Alberga, going a little to the south of east. At thirteen and a-half miles, after passing over well grassed sandy country, thickly timbered with mulga, struck a gum creek coming from S.W., with some large clay-bottomed holes in it, but all quite dry. Fifteen and a-half miles, point of table land, which I find to be 320 feet above the plain, the last two miles dreadfully stony; unfortunately two of my horses are without shoes. I now turned for junction of last creek with the main one, bearing 65° which I reached in four miles, no sign of water; followed creek for one mile, and came to a native camp, with two wells, but very little water. A blackfellow and his lubra soon made their appearance, the former who could speak a {Page 22} few words of English, offered to show me some more water lower down, I followed him for three miles, and he showed me a well in the deep sand, but only a very small supply of water; it was nearly midnight before we obtained enough water to give the horses a bucket each. I shall return to-morrow, taking the blackfellow Charlie with me, who speaks of a hole of water with fish in it up the creek. Light showers to-day.

Wednesday, December 3.—The Alberga Olarinna Well. Barometer, 28.80 in.; wind east. Started at 6.30 a.m., and at a short distance from camp I found a tree marked T/XLIX within circle. Followed Charlie ten miles, for point bearing 161° from point of table-land, where he showed me a hole of water thirty yards long, six wide, and four feet deep, which I have called by its native name, Appatinna. He speaks of it as a permanent water. Returned to camp where I met my party. Very hot.

Thursday, December 4.—The Alberga. Barometer, 28.55 in.; wind south-east. Proceeded to Appatinna. Very hot all day. Found a number of blacks camped at the water; they nearly all speak English, some very well. I got from them a very had account of the water between here and where the telegraph line crosses the Alberga; there is no certainty of a single water. I intend going to a hole they call Murdarinna to-morrow, with one of the blacks to see if that has any water.

Friday, December 5.—The Alberga Appatinna Water (Depôt No. 21). South latitude, 27° 7' 8". Barometer, 28.60 in.; wind north-east. Proceeded with Kamran, a blackfellow, and three camels to the well I watered the horses at. Started on course 94° 30', from a small hill south of water, passing over poorly grassed stony ground; four and a-half miles top of a detached bill, a table land about four miles south, and the Alberga about three miles north; stony plain around hill. Changed to 107°. At two and a-half miles a small gum creek from south-west; at six miles, end of stony plain, and commencement of low sandhills and mulga; passed some salt lagoons at fourteen miles, one mile to the north; at seventeen miles watercourse, with some clay holes, but no water; followed it west five miles to a large hole (Murdarinna), also quite dry, and ramped. Very hot all day.

Saturday, December 6.—Murdarinna. Barometer, 28.73 in.; wind north; cloudy close morning. Started at 4.30 a.m. for the nearest water in the Alberga, which I reached at 9 a.m., and continued on to depôt to water the camels. On Monday I shall take the horses over to the large waterhole Stuart speaks of in the Hamilton, and afterwards strike the telegraph line at the Hamilton crossing. Reached depôt, and found the blacks still camped at the water, about thirty in all. They seem to get plenty of food (wallaby and seeds). There are two old lubras—one certainly is the moat pitiable object I ever saw; she is literally nothing but skin and bone. Some of the others told us it was no use giving her food as she was soon going to die. My brother boiled some flour for her, with which she would have burned her fingers had she been allowed; she was so eager to devour it as soon as it was cooked.

Sunday. December 7.—The Alberga Appatinna Water (Depôt, No. 21). Barometer, 28.63 in.; wind north; still very hot. Even the natives walk on the grass and bushes to avoid burning their feet.

Monday, December 8.—The Alberga Appatinna Water (Depôt No. 21). Barometer, 28.67; wind north. Started at 7 a.m., for "Carpamoongana" Waterhole in the Hamilton; and as I was assured by the natives that it was only a short distance I got one of them to go on with me, and took on all my horses. After travelling twenty-five miles on course 140°, the first fifteen over well-grassed sandhills, densely timbered with mulga, and after over higher ones of a similar description, struck Mr. Giles's(?) horse tracks going about north-west (he had evidently passed here in the rain). Finding that the blackfellow was completely bushed, and having I considered travelled far enough for the Hamilton, I followed the tracks south-east, and after following them for three miles was obliged to wait until sundown, owing to the intense heat, and one of my party (Winnall) being ill. I never experienced a hotter day, the wind was as though it blew from a furnace. At sundown I started to return to depôt. Unfortunately, owing to my waterbags leaking, we bad but little water, and it was all gone before we started back. In passing through the thick scrub, before the moon rose, I crossed my outward tracks, and, in trying to pick them up, I considerably increased the distance. Still a very hot wind blowing. One horse, that has given us a great deal of trouble, was missed in the scrub, and another knocked up, and had to be left behind, as also the one Winnall was riding. But instead of telling me he stayed behind, and it was not until we had proceeded some distance that I beard of it. Had he told me that his horse was getting done, I would have changed it immediately. I can do nothing now.

Tuesday, December 9.—Sandhills north of the Alberga; a hot wind from the north all night. At 3 a.m. arrived at the creek, at a point six miles east of the depôt, and obtained some water in a native well. I was quite knocked up, not having been well all yesterday; Mr. Berry and Moses were little better—the latter, though he could hardly speak from thirst, held up manfully, driving the horses all the night without a murmur. I proceeded to the depôt as soon as I had drank a little water, and arrived just at sunrise, having been eighteen hours in the saddle. I at once sent off my brother with water for Winnall, and to look up the missing horses; I also sent Kamran and a blackfellow with three camels, loaded with as much water as we had vessels to carry it in, to where the horses were last seen. At it o'clock a.m. Winnall arrived, he had unfortunately missed my brother, but saw Kamran on the creek, and the blackfellow showed them a well at which they were able to give the horse a little water. Very hot all day, 115° in the shade.

Wednesday, December 10.—The Alberga, Appatinna Water, Depôt No. 21. Barometer, 28.67 in.; wind south; a change at night. My brother arrived at 7 a.m., with the knocked up horse, but had seen nothing of the other; the one he brought back had left the tracks, and was about twenty miles down this creek; it is a most miserable-looking object, and can scarcely stand. The water I sent on by the camels was of no service. I made sure that the horses would not leave the tracks; fortunately, I told Kamran that if my brother did not come to him by noon to-day, he could give the water to the camels and return at once. I trust he may have fallen in with the other horse.

{Page 23}

Thursday, December 11.—The Alberga, Appatinna Water, Depôt No. 21. Barometer, 26.6 in.; wind south. I must give the camels a day's rest before starting again for the Hamilton.

Friday, December 12.—The Alberga, Appatinna Water, Depôt No. 21. Barometer, 28:67 in.; wind south-east. Started at 5 a.m. with Kamran, for where I crossed (Mr. Giles's? tracks). After reaching them, changed course to 20°, and struck the Hamilton in six miles, at a point half a-mile west of a waterhole, which the natives call "Carpamoongana;" the sandhills extend to within half a-mile of the creek, then stones and thick mulga. I found plenty of water, but the hole is much reduced from want of rain, being divided into five holes.

Saturday, December 13.—The Hamilton "Carpamoongana." Barometer 28.9 in.; wind south. Started on course 55°, taking Kamran and a native. Passed over sandhills for the first three miles; then stones. At five and a half miles a creek, from west-north-west, which the blackfellow informed me contains a large waterhole, up the creek from where we crossed. This joins the Hamilton two and a half miles east-south-east. Changed course to a hill bearing 79° 30'; some low hills three miles to the north, bearing east; reached the top in four and a half miles, country still very stony and poorly grassed. Changed to another stony rise 88°; at four miles, a few sandhills; six miles, top of rise; creek one mile south. Changed to 72° 30'; crossed creek at one and three quarters, four and a half, and nine and half miles; water at last crossing by digging in the sand; at fourteen miles, after passing over sandhills, with mulga, and well grassed, struck the telegraph line at the Hamilton Crossing, and camped at a native well east of line.

Sunday, December 14.—Telegraph line at Hamilton Crossing. Barometer 29 in.; wind south-east. Started at 6.30 a.m. to search for water in the Stevenson; found some just north of its junction with the Hamilton. I shall hasten back and bring my party to this water, and then proceed to Charlotte Waters.

Monday, December 15.—Telegraph line at Hamilton Crossing. Barometer 29 in.; wind north. Started for "Carpamoongana;" day very hot. Arrived at 5 p.m.

Tuesday, December 16.—The Hamilton "Carpamoongana." Barometer 28.92 in.; wind north; very hot. Sent Kamran to Appatinna, remaining myself with two camels at this water until the horses arrive. Thunderstorm towards sundown.

Wednesday, December 17.—The Hamilton "Carpamoongana." Lat. 26° 45' 18" south. Barometer 28.92 in.; wind east. Mr. Berry arrived at 3 p.m. with horses.

Thursday, December 18.—The Hamilton "Carpamoongana." Barometer 28.75 in.; wind south-east. Started at 5.30 a.m., and reached water in the Stevenson at 3 p.m. Intend starting for Charlotte Waters to-morrow.

Friday, December 19.—Water in the Stevenson, north of Hamilton junction. Lat 26° 39' 47". Barometer 28.85 in.; wind south. Started at 5.15 a.m., taking Kamran and two camels to bring back stores for party: arrived at 10 p.m., after a ride of 65 miles. I was received very kindly by Mr. C. Giles, Telegraphmaster.

W. C. GOSSE, Leader.

Map of the Route travelled and the Discoveries madeby the South Austeralian Government Central and Western Exploring Expedition, 1873.

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A copy of this map at much higher resolution is available from the website of the
State Records Office of Western Australia.


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