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Three Expeditions into the Interior of Eastern Australia, Vol 2 (of 2) by Thomas Mitchell

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THREE EXPEDITIONS

INTO THE INTERIOR OF

EASTERN AUSTRALIA;

WITH DESCRIPTIONS OF THE RECENTLY EXPLORED REGION OF

AUSTRALIA FELIX,

AND OF THE PRESENT COLONY OF

NEW SOUTH WALES:

BY MAJOR T.L. MITCHELL, F.G.S. & M.R.G.S.

SURVEYOR-GENERAL.

SECOND EDITION, CAREFULLY REVISED.

...

IN TWO VOLUMES.

VOLUME 2.

LONDON:
T. & W. BOONE, NEW BOND STREET.

...

CONTENTS OF VOLUME 2.

EXPEDITION TO THE RIVERS DARLING AND MURRAY, IN THE YEAR 1836.

CHAPTER 3.1.

Route proposed.
Equipment.
List of the Men.
Agreement with a native guide.
Livestock.
Corrobory-dance of the natives.
Visit to the Limestone caves.
Osseous breccia.
Mount Granard, first point to be attained.
Halt on a dry creek.
Break a wheel.
Attempt to ascend Marga.
Snakes.
View from Marga.
Reach the Lachlan.
Find its channel dry.

CHAPTER 3.2.

Continue the journey.
Acacia pendula.
Ascend Mount Amyot.
Field's Plains.
Cracks in the surface.
Ascend Mount Cunningham.
Mr. Oxley's tree.
Rain.
Goobang Creek.
Large fishes.
Heavy rain.
Ascend Mount Allan.
Natives from the Bogan.
Prophecy of a Coradje.
Poisoned waterhole.
Ascend Hurd's Peak.
Snake and bird.
Ride to Mount Granard.
Scarcity of water there.
View from the summit.
Encamp there.
Ascend Bolloon, a hill beyond the Lachlan.
Natives refuse to eat emu.
Native dog.
Kalingalungaguy.
Mr. Stapylton overtakes the party.
Of the plains in general.
Character of the Goobang and Bogan.
Cudjallagong or Regent's Lake.
Nearly dry.
Dead trees in it.
Rocks near it.
Trap and tuff.
Natives there.
Women.
Men.
Their account of the country lower down.
Oolawambiloa.
Gaiety of the natives.
Colour light.
Mr. Stapylton surveys the lake.
Campbell's Lake.
Piper obtains a gin.
Ascend Goulburn range.
View from the summit.
Warranary.
A new Correa.

CHAPTER 3.3.

North arm of the Lachlan.
Quawys.
Wallangome.
Wild cattle.
Ascend Moriattu.
Leave the Lachlan to travel westward.
No water.
Natives from Warranary.
Course down the Lachlan resumed.
Extensive ride to the westward.
Night without water.
Continue westward, and south-west.
Sandhills.
Atriplex.
Deep cracks in the earth.
Search for the Lachlan.
Cross various dry channels.
Graves.
Second night without water.
Native tumulus.
Reedy swamp with dead trees.
Route of Mr. Oxley.
Dry bed of the Lachlan.
Find at length a large pool.
Food of the natives discovered.
Horses knock up.
Scenery on the Lachlan.
Character of the different kinds of trees.
Return to the party.
Dead body found in the water.
Ascend Burradorgang.
A rainy night without shelter.
A new guide.
Native dog.
Branches of the Lachlan.
A native camp.
Children.
A widow joins the party as guide.
Horse killed.
The Balyan root.
How gathered.
Reach the united channel of the Lachlan.
No water.
Natives' account of the rivers lower down.
Mr. Oxley's lowest camp on the Lachlan.
Slow growth of trees.
A tribe of natives come to us.
Mr. Oxley's bottle.
Waljeers Lake.
Trigonella suavissima.
Barney in disgrace.
A family of natives from the Murrumbidgee.
Inconvenient formality of natives meeting.
Rich tints on the surface.
Improved appearance of the river.
Inhabited tomb.
Dead trees among the reeds.
Visit some rising ground.
View northward.
Difficulties in finding either of the rivers or any water.
Search for the Murrumbidgee.
A night without water.
Heavy fall of rain.
Two men missing.
Reach the Murrumbidgee.
Natives on the opposite bank.
They swim across.
Afraid of the sheep.
Their reports about the junction of the Darling.
Search up the river for junction of Lachlan.
Course of the Murrumbidgee.
Tribe from Cudjallagong visits the camp in my absence.
Caught following my steps.
Piper questions them.

CHAPTER 3.4.

The Murrumbidgee compared with other rivers.
Heaps of stones used in cooking.
High reeds on the riverbank.
Lake Weromba.
Native encampment.
Riverbanks of difficult access.
Best horse drowned.
Cross a country subject to inundations.
Traverse a barren region at some distance from the river.
Kangaroos there.
Another horse in the river.
Lagoons preferable to the river for watering cattle.
High wind, dangerous in a camp under trees.
Serious accident; a cartwheel passes over The Widow's child.
Graves of the natives.
Choose a position for the depot.
My horse killed by the kick of a mare.
Proceed to the Darling with a portion of the party.
Reach the Murray.
Its breadth at our camp.
Meet with a tribe.
Lake Benanee.
Discover the natives to be those last seen on the Darling.
Harassing night in their presence.
Piper alarmed.
Rockets fired to scare them away.
They again advance in the morning.
Men advance towards them holding up their firearms.
They retire, and we continue our journey.
Again followed by the natives.
Danger of the party.
Long march through a scrubby country.
Dismal prospect.
Night without water or grass.
Heavy rain.
Again make the Murray.
Strange natives visit the camp at dusk.

CHAPTER 3.5.

New and remarkable shrub.
Darling tribe again.
Their dispersion by the party.
Cross a tract intersected by deep lagoons.
Huts over tombs.
Another division of the Darling tribe.
Barren sands and the Eucalyptus dumosa.
Plants which grow on the sand and bind it down.
Fish caught.
Aspect of the country to the northward.
Strange natives from beyond the Murray.
They decamp during the night.
Reach the Darling and surprise a numerous tribe of natives.
Piper and his gin explain.
Search for the junction with the Murray.
Return by night.
Followed by the natives.
Horses take fright.
Break loose and run back.
Narrow escape of some men from natives.
Failure of their intended attack.
Different modes of interment.
Reduced appearance of the Darling.
Desert character of the country.
Rainy morning.
Return of the party.
Surprise the females of the tribe.
Junction of the Darling and Murray.
Effect of alternate floods there.

CHAPTER 3.6.

Return along the bank of the Murray.
Mount Lookout.
Appearance of rain.
Chance of being cut off from the depot by the river floods.
A savage man at home.
Tributaries of the Murray.
A storm in the night.
Traverse the land of lagoons before the floods come down.
Traces of many naked feet along our old track.
Camp of 400 natives.
Narrow escape from the floods of the river.
Piper overtakes two youths fishing in Lake Benanee.
Description of the lake.
Great rise in the waters of the Murray.
Security of the depot.
Surrounded by inundations.
Cross to it in a bark canoe made by Tommy Came-last.
Search for the junction of the Murrumbidgee and Murray.
Mr. Stapylton reaches the junction of the rivers.
Reception by the natives of the left bank.
Passage of the Murray.
Heavy rains set in.
Row up the Murray to the junction of the Murrumbidgee.
Commence the journey upwards, along the left bank.
Strange animal.
Picturesque scenery on the river.
Kangaroos numerous.
Country improves as we ascend the river.
A region of reeds.
The water inaccessible from soft and muddy banks.
Habits of our native guides.
Natives very shy.
Piper speaks to natives on the river.
Good land on the Murray.
Wood and water scarce.
Junction of two branches.
Swan Hill.

CHAPTER 3.7.

Exploring through a fog.
Lakes.
Circular Lake of Boga.
Clear grassy hills.
Natives on the lake.
Scarcity of fuel on the bank of a deep river.
Different character of two rivers.
Unfortunate result of Piper's interview with the natives of the lake.
Discovery of the Jerboa in Australia.
Different habits of the savage and civilized.
A range visible in the south.
Peculiarities in the surface of the country near the river.
Water of the lakes brackish, or salt.
Natives fly at our approach.
Arrival in the dark, on the bank of a watercourse.
Dead saplings of ten years growth in the ponds.
Discovery of Mount Hope.
Enter a much better country.
Limestone.
Curious character of an original surface.
Native weirs for fish.
Their nets for catching ducks.
Remarkable character of the lakes.
Mr. Stapylton's excursion in search of the main stream.
My ride to Mount Hope.
White Anguillaria.
View from Mount Hope.
Return of Mr. Stapylton.

CHAPTER 3.8.

The Party quits the Murray.
Pyramid Hill.
Beautiful country seen from it.
Discovery of the river Yarrayne.
A bridge made across it.
Covered by a sudden rise of the river.
Then cross it in boats.
Useful assistance of Piper.
Our female guide departs.
Enter a hilly country.
Ascend Barrabungalo.
Rainy weather.
Excursion southward.
The widow returns to the party.
Natives of Tarray.
Their description of the country.
Discover the Loddon.
The woods.
Cross a range.
Kangaroos numerous.
The earth becomes soft and impassable, even on the sides of hills.
Discover a noble range of mountains.
Cross another stream.
Another.
General character of the country.
Proposed excursion to the mountains.
Richardson's creek.
Cross a fine stream flowing in three separate channels.
A ridge of poor sandy soil.
Cross another stream.
Trap-hills and good soil.
Ascend the mountain.
Clouds cover it.
A night on the summit.
No fuel.
View from it at sunrise.
Descend with difficulty.
Men taken ill.
New plants found there.
Repose in the valley.
Night's rest.
Natives at the camp during my absence.

CHAPTER 3.9.

Plains of stiff clay.
The Wimmera.
Difficult passage of its five branches.
Ascend Mount Zero.
Circular lake, brackish water.
The Wimmera in a united channel.
Lose this river.
Ascend Mount Arapiles.
Mr. Stapylton's excursion northward.
Salt lakes.
Green Hill lake.
Mitre lake.
Relinquish the pursuit of the Wimmera.
The party travels to the south-west.
Red lake.
Small lakes of fresh water.
White lake.
Basketwork of the natives.
Muddy state of the surface.
Mr. Stapylton's ride southward.
Disastrous encounter of one man with a native.
A tribe makes its appearance.
More lakes of brackish water.
Escape at last from the mud.
Encamp on a running stream.
Fine country.
Discovery of a good river.
Granitic soil.
Passage of the Glenelg.
Country well watered.
Pigeon ponds.
Soft soil again impedes the party.
Halt to repair the carts and harness.
Natives very shy.
Chetwynd rivulet.
Slow progress over the soft surface.
Excursion into the country before us.
Beautiful region discovered.
The party extricated with difficulty from the mud.

CHAPTER 3.10.

Cross various rivulets.
Enter the valley of Nangeela.
Native female and child.
Encamp on the Glenelg.
Cross the Wannon.
Rifle range.
Mount Gambier first seen from it.
Sterile moors crossed by the party.
Natives numerous but not accessible.
Again arrive on the Glenelg.
Indifferent country on its banks.
Breadth and velocity of the river.
Encamp on a tributary.
Difficult passage.
The expedition brought to a stand in soft ground.
Excursion beyond.
Reach a fine point on the river.
The carts extricated.
The whole equipment reaches the river.
The boats launched on the Glenelg.
Mr. Stapylton left with a depot at Fort O'Hare.
Character of the river.
Ornithorynchus paradoxus.
Black swans.
Water brackish.
Isle of Bags.
Arrival at the seacoast.
Discovery bay.
Mouth of the Glenelg.
Waterholes dug in the beach.
Remarkable hollow.
Limestone cavern.
One fish caught in the Glenelg.
Stormy weather.
Return to the depot.
Difference in longitude.

CHAPTER 3.11.

Leave the Glenelg and travel eastward.
Cross the Crawford.
Boggy character of its sources.
Recross the Rifle range.
Heavy timber the chief impediment.
Travelling also difficult from the softness of the ground.
Excursion southward to Portland Bay.
Mount Eckersley.
Cross the Fitzroy.
Cross the Surry.
Lady Julia Percy's Isle.
Beach of Portland Bay.
A vessel at anchor.
House and farming establishment there.
Whale fishery.
Excursion to Cape Nelson.
Mount Kincaid.
A whale chase.
Sagacity of the natives on the coast.
Mount Clay.
Return to the camp.
Still retarded by the soft soil.
Leave one of the boats, and reduce the size of the boat carriage.
Excursion to Mount Napier.
Cross some fine streams.
Natives very timid.
Crater of Mount Napier or Murroa.
View from the summit.
Return to the Camp.
Mr. Stapylton's excursion to the north-west.
The Shaw.
Conduct the carts along the highest ground.
Again ascend Murroa and partially clear the summit.
Mount Rouse.
Australian Pyrenees.
Swamps harder than the ground around them.
Again reach the good country.
Mounts Bainbrigge and Pierrepoint.
Mount Sturgeon.
Ascend Mount Abrupt.
View of the Grampians from the summit.
Victoria range and the Serra.
Mud again, and a broken axle.
Mr. Stapylton examines the country before us.
At length get through the soft region.
Cattle quite exhausted.
Determine to leave them in a depot to refresh while I proceed forward.
Specimens of natural history.
Situation of depot camp at Lake Repose.

CHAPTER 3.12.

Parting of The Widow and her child.
We at length emerge on much firmer ground.
River Hopkins.
Mount Nicholson.
Cockajemmy salt lakes.
Natives ill disposed.
Singular weapon.
Treacherous concealment of a native.
Contents of a native's basket and store.
A tribe comes forward.
Fine country for colonisation.
Hollows in the downs.
Snakes numerous.
Native females.
Cattle tracks.
Ascend Mount Cole.
Enter on a granite country.
Many rivulets.
Mammeloid hills.
Lava, the surface rock.
Snakes eaten by the natives.
Ascend Mount Byng.
Rich grass.
Expedition pass.
Excursion towards Port Phillip.
Discover and cross the river Barnard.
Emus numerous and tame.
The river Campaspe.
Effects of a storm in the woods.
Ascend Mount Macedon.
Port Phillip dimly seen from it.
Return to the camp.
Continue our homeward journey.
Waterfall of Cobaw.
Singular country on the Barnard.
Cross the Campaspe.
An English razor found.
Ascend Mount Campbell.
Native beverage.
Valley of the Deegay.
Natives exchange baskets for axes.
They linger about our camp.
Effect of fireworks, etc.
Arrival at, and passage of, the Goulburn.
Fish caught.

CHAPTER 3.13.

Continue through a level forest country.
Ascend a height near the camp, and obtain a sight of snowy summits
to the eastward.
Reach a swampy river.
A man drowned.
Pass through Futter's range.
Impeded by a swamp among reeds.
Junction of the rivers Ovens and King.
Ascend granitic ranges.
Lofty mass named Mount Aberdeen.
Reach the Murray.
The river very difficult of access.
A carriage track discovered.
Passage of the river.
Cattle.
Horses.
Party returning to meet Mr. Stapylton.
A creek terminating in a swamp.
Mount Trafalgar.
Rugged country still before us.
Provisions nearly exhausted.
Cattle tracks found.
At length reach a valley leading in the desired direction.
Cattle seen.
Obliged to kill one of our working bullocks.
By following the valley downwards, we arrive on the Murrumbidgee.
Write my despatch.
Piper meets his friends.
Native names of rivers.

CHAPTER 3.14.

Agreeable travelling.
Appearance of the country on the Murrumbidgee.
Jugion Creek.
Brunonia abundant.
Yass plains.
The Gap, an inn.
Bredalbane plains.
Lake George.
Soil and rocks.
The Wollondilly.
Goulburn plains.
A garden.
Public works.
Shoalhaven river.
Limestone caverns there.
County of St. Vincent.
Upper Shoalhaven.
Carwary.
Vast subsidence on a mountain there.
Goulburn township.
Great road.
Towrang hill.
The Wollondilly.
Wild country through which it flows.
The Nattai.
Moyengully.
Arrive at the line of great road.
Convict workmen.
Berrima bridge.
Berrima.
Trap range.
Sandstone country.
The Illawarra.
Lupton's inn.
The Razorback.
Ford of the Nepean.
Campbelltown.
Liverpool.
Lansdowne bridge.
Arrive at Sydney.
General remarks on the character of the settled country.
Fires in the woods.
Necessity for cutting roads.
Proportion of good and bad land.
Description of Australia Felix.
Woods.
Harbours.
The Murray.
Mr. Stapylton's report.
The aboriginal natives.
Turandurey.
My mode of communicating with Mr. Stapylton.
Survey of the Murrumbidgee.
Meteorological journal.
Arrival of the exploring party at Sydney.
Piper.
The two Tommies.
Ballandella.
Character of the natives of the interior.
Language.
Habits of those of Van Diemen's Land the same.
Temporary huts.
Mode of climbing trees.
Remarkable customs.
Charmed stones.
Females excluded from superstitious rites.
Bandage or fillet around the temples.
Striking out the tooth.
Painting with red.
Raised scars on arms and breast.
Cutting themselves in mourning.
Authority of old men.
Native dogs.
Females carrying children.
Weapons.
Spear.
Woomera.
Boomerang.
Its probable origin.
Shield or Hieleman.
Skill in approaching the kangaroo.
Modes of cooking.
Opossum.
Singeing.
Vegetable food.
The shovel.
General observations.

CHAPTER 3.15.

Geological specimens collected.
Connection between soil and rocks.
Limestone.
Granite.
Trap-rocks.
Sandstone.
Geological structure and physical outline.
Valleys of excavation.
Extent of that of the Cox.
Quantity of rock removed.
Valley of the Grose.
Wellington Valley.
Limestone caverns.
Description and view of the largest.
Of that containing osseous breccia.
First discovery of bones.
Small cavity and stalagmitic crust.
Teeth found in the floor.
A third cavern.
Breccia on the surface.
Similar caverns in other parts of the country.
At Buree.
At Molong.
Shattered state of the bones.
Important discoveries by Professor Owen.
Gigantic fossil kangaroos.
Macropus atlas.
Macropus titan.
Macropus indeterminate.
Genus Hypsiprymnus, new species, indeterminate.
Genus Phalangista.
Genus Phascolomys.
Ph. mitchellii, a new species.
New Genus Diprotodon.
Dasyurus laniarius, a new species.
General results of Professor Owen's researches.
Age of the breccia considered.
State of the caverns.
Traces of inundation.
Stalagmitic crust.
State of the bones.
Putrefaction had only commenced when first deposited.
Accompanying marks of disruption.
Earthy deposits.
These phenomena compared with other evidence of inundation.
Salt lakes in the interior.
Changes on the seacoast.
Proofs that the coast was once higher above the sea than it is at
present.
Proofs that it was once lower.
And of violent action of the sea.
At Wollongong.
Cape Solander.
Port Jackson.
Broken Bay.
Newcastle.
Tuggerah Beach.
Bass Strait.

...

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS. VOLUME 2.

PLATE 22: CRATER OF MURROA, OR MOUNT NAPIER, IN AUSTRALIA FELIX
(DESCRIBED IN THE TEXT).
Major T.L. Mitchell del. A. Picken Lith. Day & Haghe Lithographers to the
Queen.

CORROBORY-DANCE OF THE NATIVES, AS DESCRIBED IN THE TEXT.

MOUNT MELVILLE (OF OXLEY), FROM MERUMBA.

MOUNT CUNNINGHAM, OR BEERY BIRREE.

NYORORONG FROM MOUNT CUNNINGHAM.

OXLEY'S TREE ON THE LACHLAN (OR KALARE) RIVER.

PLATE 23: Plyctolophus leadbeateri, COCKATOO OF THE INTERIOR.

PLATE 24: PORTRAITS OF TURANDUREY (THE FEMALE GUIDE) AND HER CHILD
BALLANDELLA, WITH THE SCENERY ON THE LACHLAN (10TH OF MAY 1836).
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Foggo & G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to
Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLAN OF AN INHABITED TOMB.

PLATE 25: PIPER WATCHING THE CART AT BENANEE.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. Waldeck Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

A NEW SHRUB, THE Eucarya murrayana (MIHI) AND YOUNG FRUIT.

PLATE 26: THE RIVER MURRAY, AND DISPERSION OF NATIVES, 27TH MAY, 1836.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. J. Brandord & G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer
to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLATE 27: Choeropus ecaudatus (OGILBY), A NEW AND SINGULAR ANIMAL.
Fore foot, natural size.
T.L.M. del.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

PLATE 28: BACKWATER, OR FLOOD-BRANCH OF THE MURRAY, WITH THE SCENERY
COMMON ON ITS BANK.
Acacia exudans.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLATE 29: Dipus mitchellii (OGILBY), A NEW ANIMAL RESEMBLING THE JERBOA.
T.L.M. del. A. Picken Lith. Day & Haghe Lithographers to the Queen.

MOUNT HOPE FROM THE NORTH.

PYRAMID HILL.

PLATE 30: THE RIVER YARRAYNE, WITH THE SHEEP OF THE PARTY FIRST
APPROACHING IT.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLAN OF TEMPORARY BRIDGE ACROSS THE YARRAYNE.

PLATE 31: MITRE ROCK AND LAKE, FROM MOUNT ARAPILES.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLATE 32: PLAN OF HILLS BESIDE GREENHILL LAKE (INTERIOR OF AUSTRALIA,
ENGRAVED FROM A MODEL).
Bate's Patent Anaglyptograph. Freebairn.
Published by T. & W. Boone.

MOUNT ARAPILES FROM MITRE LAKE.

PLATE 33: WESTERN EXTREMITY OF MOUNT ARAPILES.
Left: Casuarinae. Right: an altered Sandstone. Right foreground: Banksia.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

BARBED SPEARS OF THE NATIVES.

PLATE 34: FEMALE AND CHILD OF AUSTRALIA FELIX.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. Waldeck Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLATE 35: BOAT ON THE RIVER GLENELG.
Left foreground: Banksia. Middle distance: Limestone.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.

YELLOW FLOWER ABUNDANT ON THE PLAINS OF AUSTRALIA FELIX.

GENERAL VIEW OVER THE GRAMPIANS FROM THE SUMMIT OF MOUNT ABRUPT.
Left: Victoria Range. Right: Mount William distant 21 1/2 miles.

MOUNT ABRUPT FROM THE SOUTH.
Williams.

PLATE 36: Aquilla fucosa ? AUSTRALIAN EAGLE. PORTRAIT OF AN EAGLE THAT
HAD BEEN WINGED (NATURAL SIZE).
From Nature and on Stone by Major T.L. Mitchell. J. Graf Printer to Her
Majesty.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

MOUNT WILLIAM FROM MOUNT STAVELY.
Foreground: Forest Hills. Middle Distance: Plains.

WEAPONS OF THE NATIVES.
Figures 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

HILLS OF LAVA, OR MAMMELOID HILLS, FROM MOUNT GREENOCK.
Horizon: Mount Byng Pass.

PORT PHILLIP, 50 MILES DISTANT, AS SEEN THROUGH A GLASS FROM MOUNT
MACEDON.
Left to right: B, River, Indented Head, A, Woody Hill.

PLATE 37: COBAW WATERFALL, WITH NATIVES FISHING.
All granite.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Barnard Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

PLATE 38: GENERAL VIEW OF THE SANDSTONE DISTRICTS, FROM THE SUMMIT OF
JELLORE.
Left to right: Bonnum Pic, Gnowogang, Valley of Cox River, King's
Tableland, King George's Mount, Mount Hay, Tomah.
On Zinc by Major Mitchell (a Page of his Field Book). Day & Haghe
Lithographers to the Queen.
London, Published by T. & W. Boone.

PLATE 39: PORTRAIT OF MOYENGULLY, CHIEF OF NATTAI.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. G. Foggo Lith.
Published by T. and W. Boone, London.

PLATE 40: MAP OF EASTERN AUSTRALIA, AND NATURAL LIMITS OF THE COLONY OF
NEW SOUTH WALES.
London, Published by T. & W. Boone. Engraved by J. Dower, Pentonville.

THE BOOMERANG, A SINGULAR MISSILE.

NARROW SHIELD, OR HIELEMAN.

PLATE 41: SCENERY AROUND THE ENTRANCE OF THE LARGEST CAVERN IN THE
LIMESTONE AT WELLINGTON VALLEY.
T.L.M. del. A. Picken Lith.

PLATE 42: GEOLOGICAL MAP OF WELLINGTON VALLEY.
From Nature and on Stone by Major T.L. Mitchell.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

PLATE 43: INTERIOR OF THE LARGEST CAVERN AT WELLINGTON VALLEY.
Major T.L. Mitchell. Day & Haghe Lithographers to the Queen.
London, Published by T. & W. Boone.

PLATE 44: VERTICAL SECTION AND GROUND-PLOT OF TWO CAVERNS AT WELLINGTON
VALLEY.
From Nature and on Stone by Major T.L. Mitchell.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

PLATE 45: INTERIOR OF THE CAVERN CONTAINING OSSEOUS BRECCIA AT WELLINGTON
VALLEY.
Major T.L. Mitchell. Day & Haghe Lithographers to the Queen.
London, Published by T. & W. Boone.

PLATE 46: ROCK OF BRECCIA FOUND ON THE SURFACE ABOVE THE LARGEST CAVERN
AT WELLINGTON VALLEY.
T.L.M. del. A. Picken Lith. Day & Haghe Lithographers to the Queen.

PLATE 47: FOSSIL REMAINS AND RECENT SPECIMENS, EACH OF THE NATURAL SIZE:
FIGURE 1, BELONGING TO Macropus atlas, AND
FIGURE 2, TO THE LARGEST RECENT SPECIMEN.
FIGURES 3, 4, AND 5, TO Macropus titan.
FIGURE 6, THE INCISOR OF A FOSSIL KANGAROO.
FIGURE 7, THE INCISOR OF THE LARGEST NOW KNOWN.
FIGURE 8, FOSSIL LUMBAR VERTEBRA.
From Nature and on Stone by Major T.L. Mitchell. J. Graf Printer to Her
Majesty.

PLATE 48:
FIGURES 1, 2, AND 3: FOSSIL REMAINS OF A NEW SPECIES OF HYPSIPRYMNUS.
FIGURES 4, 5, AND 6: OF Phascolomys mitchellii.
FIGURE 7: A SECTION OF THE TEETH OF THE SAME FOSSIL SPECIES OF WOMBAT.
From Nature and on Zinc by Major T.L. Mitchell. Day & Haghe Lithographers
to the Queen.
London, Published by T. & W. Boone.

PLATE 49:
FIGURES 1 AND 2: FOSSIL REMAINS OF THE DIPROTODON.
FIGURES 3, 4, 5, 6, AND 7: FOSSIL REMAINS OF THE Dasyurus laniarius.

PLATE 50: MARKS OF SUBSIDENCE IN AN INNER PORTION OF THE BRECCIA CAVERN.
Major T.L. Mitchell del. Scherf Lith. J. Graf Printer to Her Majesty.
Published by T. & W. Boone, London.

PLATE 51:
FIGURE 1: FOSSIL REMAINS OF THE RADIUS AND ULNA OF A KANGAROO.
FIGURE 2: OF THE FOOT OF A DASYURUS.
FIGURES 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, AND 11: VARIOUS TEETH OF ANIMALS
UNKNOWN.
ALL THESE DRAWINGS BEING OF THE NATURAL SIZE.
FIGURES 12 AND 13, REPRESENT, ON A REDUCED SCALE, THE LARGE BONE WHICH M.
CUVIER SUPPOSED TO HAVE BELONGED TO A YOUNG ELEPHANT.

ROCKS IN BASS STRAIT:
1. PYRAMID ROCK BEARING EAST DISTANT 3 MILES.
2. ROCK OF GRANITE BEARING EAST BY NORTH.

...

(APPENDIX 2.1.

VOCABULARY OF WORDS HAVING THE SAME MEANING IN DIFFERENT PARTS OF
AUSTRALIA.

APPENDIX 2.2.

METEOROLOGICAL JOURNAL KEPT DURING THE JOURNEY INTO THE INTERIOR OF NEW
SOUTH WALES IN 1836.)

APPENDIX 2.3.

EXTRACT FROM THE SYDNEY HERALD OF MAY 21, 1838.

APPENDIX 2.4.

AN ACCOUNT OF THE NUMBER OF POUNDS OF WOOL IMPORTED FROM NEW SOUTH WALES
AND FROM VAN DIEMEN'S LAND FROM 1820 TO 1837, DISTINGUISHING EACH YEAR.

APPENDIX 2.5.

AN ACCOUNT OF THE NUMBER OF SHIPS, AND THEIR TONNAGE, CLEARED OUT TO NEW
SOUTH WALES AND VAN DIEMEN'S LAND FROM 1820 TO 1837, DISTINGUISHING EACH
YEAR.

APPENDIX 2.6.

AN ACCOUNT OF THE NUMBER OF SHIPS, AND THEIR TONNAGE, REPORTED INWARDS
FROM NEW SOUTH WALES AND VAN DIEMEN'S LAND FROM 1820 TO 1837,
DISTINGUISHING EACH YEAR.

...

JOURNAL OF AN EXPEDITION TO THE RIVERS DARLING AND MURRAY, IN THE YEAR
1836.

CHAPTER 3.1.

Route proposed.
Equipment.
List of the Men.
Agreement with a native guide.
Livestock.
Corrobory-dance of the natives.
Visit to the Limestone caves.
Osseous breccia.
Mount Granard, first point to be attained.
Halt on a dry creek.
Break a wheel.
Attempt to ascend Marga.
Snakes.
View from Marga.
Reach the Lachlan.
Find its channel dry.

ROUTE PROPOSED.

Towards the end of the year 1835 I was apprised that the governor of New
South Wales was desirous of having the survey of the Darling completed
with the least possible delay. His excellency proposed that I should
return for this purpose to the extreme point on the Darling where my last
journey terminated and that, after having traced the Darling into the
Murray, I should embark on the latter river and, passing the carts and
oxen to the left bank at the first convenient opportunity, proceed
upwards by water as far as practicable and regain the colony somewhere
about Yass Plains.

EQUIPMENT.

The preparations for this journey were made, as on the former occasion,
chiefly in the lumber-yard at Parramatta, and under the superintendence
of the same officer, Mr. Simpson. Much of the equipment used for the last
expedition was available for this occasion. The boats and boat-carriage
were as serviceable as ever, with the advantage of being better seasoned;
and we could now, having had so much experience, prepare with less
difficulty for such an undertaking.

In consequence of a long-continued drought serviceable horses and
bullocks were at that time scarce, and could only be obtained at high
prices; but no expense was spared by the government in providing the
animals required.

The party having preceded me by some weeks on the road, I at length
overtook it on the 15th of March in a valley near the Canobolas which I
had fixed as the place of rendezvous, and where, from the great
elevation, I hoped still to find some grass. How we were to proceed
however without water was the question I was frequently asked; and I was
informed at Bathurst that even the Lachlan was dried up.

On the following day I organised the party, and armed the men. I
distributed to each a suit of new clothing; consisting of grey trousers
and a red woollen shirt, the latter article, when crossed by white
braces, giving the men somewhat of a military appearance.

Their names and designation were as follows:

LIST OF THE MEN.

LIST OF THE PARTY PROCEEDING TO THE DARLING IN MARCH 1836.*

(*Footnote. The men whose names are printed in uppercase had obtained
their freedom as a reward for past services in the interior. The
asterisks distinguish the names of men who had been with me on one or
both the former expeditions. Those to whose names the letter T is also
prefixed having previously obtained a ticket of leave releasing them from
a state of servitude. Each man was also furnished with a small case
containing six cartridges which he was ordered always to wear about his
waist.)

COLUMN 1: NAMES.
COLUMN 2: OCCUPATION IN THE EXPLORING PARTY.
COLUMN 3: OCCASIONAL EMPLOYMENT.
COLUMN 4: ARMS AND ACCOUTREMENTS.

Major T.L. Mitchell: Chief of the party : - : Rifle and pistols.
G.C. Stapylton, Esquire : Second in command : - : Carabine and pistol.
**ALEXANDER BURNETT : Overseer : Storekeeper : Carabine and pistol.
**ROBERT MUIRHEAD : Bullock-driver : Soldier and lance-corporal : Musket,
bayonet and pistol.
T*Charles Hammond : Bullock-driver : - : Musket, bayonet and pistol.
T*William Thomas : Bullock-driver : Butcher : Musket, bayonet and pistol.
Richard Lane : Bullock-driver : - : Carabine and pistol.
James McLellan : Bullock-driver : - : Musket, bayonet and pistol.
Charles Webb : Bullock-driver : - : Musket, bayonet and pistol.
T*John Johnston : Blacksmith : - : Carabine.
T Walter Blanchard : Blacksmith : Measurer : Carabine and pistol.
**WILLIAM WOODS : Horse carter : Sailor : Carabine and pistol.
*Charles King : Horse carter : Measurer : Musket, bayonet and pistol.
*John Gayton : Horse carter : Cook : Carabine.
John Drysdale : Medical attendant : Barometer-carrier : Carabine.
John Roach : Collector of birds : - : Pistol (fowling-piece).
John Richardson : Collector of plants : Shepherd : Two pistols.
**JOHN PALMER : Sailor : Sailmaker : Carabine and pistol.
John Douglas : Sailor : - : Carabine.
T**Joseph Jones : Shepherd : - : Carabine.
James Taylor : Groom : Trumpeter : Carabine and pistol.
Edward Pickering : Carpenter : Barometer-carrier : Carabine.
Archibald McKean : Carpenter : Barometer-carrier : Carabine.
James Field : Shoemaker : - : Carabine.
**Anthony Brown : Cook : - : Carabine and pistol.

This was the army with which I was to traverse unexplored regions
peopled, as far as we knew, by hostile tribes. But I could depend upon a
great portion of the men, and amongst them were some who had been with me
on the two former expeditions and who, although they had obtained their
emancipation as the well merited reward of their past services in the
interior, were nevertheless willing to accompany me once more. I accepted
their services on obtaining a promise from the governor that if the
expedition was successful their conditional pardons might be converted
into absolute pardons, a boon on which even some wealthy men in the
colony would probably have set a high value.

One of the most devoted of these followers was William Woods who, having
long toiled carrying my theodolite to the summits of the highest
mountains, was at length more comfortably situated than he had ever been
in his life before as overseer of a road party. This poor fellow
relinquished his place of authority over other men and in which he
received 1 shilling per diem, again put on the grey jacket, and set a
valuable example as the most willing of my followers, wherever drudgery
or difficulty were most discouraging.

LIVESTOCK.

Our cattle were lean but I took a greater number in consequence. The
pasturage was still meagre and scarcely any water remained on the face of
the earth. It was unusually low in the holes last year, but this season
very few indeed contained any. The equinox however was at hand, and I
could not suppose that it was never to rain again, however hopeless the
aspect of the country appeared at that time.

AGREEMENT WITH A NATIVE GUIDE.

In this camp of preparation I was visited by our old friends the natives;
and one who called himself John Piper and spoke English tolerably well
agreed to accompany me as far as I should go, provided he was allowed a
horse and was clothed, fed, etc.; all which I immediately agreed to. I
had not however forgotten Mr. Brown, and I reminded Burnett of that
native's desertion; but Burnett, who seemed to be on excellent terms with
Piper, assured me that after he should be some weeks' journey in the
interior dread of the savage natives would prevent him from leaving our
party, and so it turned out.

But in breaking on our stock of provisions, we commenced with due regard
to their importance on an interior journey by so reducing the weight of
our steel-yard that a five months' stock should last nearly seven months.
This arrangement was however a secret known only to Burnett and myself.

The plan of encampment was to be the same as on the former journey, only
that a greater number of carts stood in the line parallel to the
boat-carriage.

March 17.

I put the party in movement towards Buree and rode across the country on
our right with Piper. We found the earth parched and bare but, as we
bounded over hill and dale a fine cool breeze whispered through the open
forest, and felt most refreshing after the hot winds of Sydney. Dr.
Johnson's Obidah was not more free from care on the morning of his
journey than I was on this, the first morning of mine. It was also St.
Patrick's day, and in riding through the bush I had leisure to recall
past scenes and times connected with the anniversary. I remembered that
exactly on that morning, twenty-four years before, I marched down the
glacis of Elvas to the tune of St. Patrick's Day in the Morning as the
sun rose over the beleaguered towers of Badajoz. Now, without any of the
pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war, I was proceeding on a
service not very likely to be peaceful, for the natives here assured me
that the Myalls were coming up murry coola, i.e. very angry, to meet us.
At Buree I rejoined my friend Rankin who had accompanied me from Bathurst
to the camp, and Captain Raine who occupied this place with his cattle. A
hundred sheep and five fat oxen were to be furnished by this gentlemen to
complete my commissariat supplies.

CORROBORY-DANCE OF THE NATIVES.

In the evening the blacks, having assembled in some numbers, entertained
us with a corrobory, their universal and highly original dance. (See
Plate.) Like all the rest of the habits and customs of this singular race
of wild men, the corrobory is peculiar and, from its uniformity on every
shore, a very striking feature in their character. The dance always takes
place at night, by the light of blazing boughs, and to time beaten on
stretched skins, accompanied by a song.* The dancers paint themselves
white, and in such remarkably varied ways that no two individuals are at
all alike. Darkness seems essential to the effect of the whole; and the
painted figures coming forward in mystic order from the obscurity of the
background, while the singers and beaters of time are invisible, have a
highly theatrical effect. Each dance seems most tastefully progressive;
the movement being at first slow, and introduced by two persons
displaying graceful motions both of arms and legs, others one by one join
in, each imperceptibly warming into the truly savage attitude of the
corrobory jump; the legs then stride to the utmost, the head is turned
over one shoulder, the eyes glare and are fixed with savage energy all in
one direction, the arms also are raised and inclined towards the head,
the hands usually grasping waddies, boomerangs, or other warlike weapons.
The jump now keeps time with each beat, the dancers at every movement
taking six inches to one side, all being in a connected line, led by the
first. The line however is sometimes doubled or tripled according to
space and numbers; and this gives great effect, for when the front line
jumps to the LEFT, the second jumps to the RIGHT, the third to the LEFT
again, and so on; until the action acquires due intensity, when all
simultaneously and suddenly stop. The excitement which this dance
produces in the savage is very remarkable. However listless the
individual may be, laying perhaps, as usual, half asleep; set him to this
dance, and he is fired with sudden energy, and every nerve is strung to
such a degree that he is no longer to be recognised as the same person
until he ceases to dance, and comes to you again. There can be little
doubt that the corrobory is the medium through which the delights of
poetry are enjoyed, in a limited degree, even by these primitive savages
of New Holland.

(*Footnote. To this end they stretch a skin very tight over the knees,
and thus may be said to use the tympanum in its rudest form, this being
the only instance of a musical instrument that I have seen among them.
Burder says: "By the timbrels which Miriam and the other women played
upon when dancing, we are to understand the tympanum of the ancient
Greeks and Romans, which instrument still bears in the East the name that
it is in Hebrew, namely, doff or diff, whence is derived the Spanish
adufe, the name of the Biscayan tabor. Niebuhr describes this instrument
in his Travels Part 1 page 181. It is a broad hoop, with a skin stretched
over it; on the edge there are generally thin round plates of metal,
which also make some noise when this instrument is held up in one hand
and struck with the fingers of the other hand. Probably no musical
instrument is so common in Turkey as this; for when the women dance in
the harem the time is always beat on this instrument. We find the same
instrument on all the monuments in the hands of the Bacchante. It is also
common among the negroes of the Gold Coast and Slave Coast." Oriental
Customs Volume 1.)

VISIT TO THE LIMESTONE CAVES.

March 18.

As it was necessary to grind some wheat with hand-mills to make up our
supply of flour, I was obliged to remain a day at Buree; and I therefore
determined on a visit to the limestone caves, by no means the least
remarkable feature in that country. The whole district consists of trap
and limestone, the former appearing in ridges, which belong to the lofty
mass of Canobolas. The limestone occurs chiefly in the sides of valleys
in different places, and contains probably many unexplored caves. The
orifices are small fissures in the rock, and they have escaped the
attention of the white people who have hitherto wandered there. I had
long been anxious to extend my researches for fossil bones among these
caves, having discovered during a cursory visit to them some years before
that many interesting remains of the early races of animals in Australia
were to be found in the deep crevices and caverns of the limestone rock.
How they got there was a question which had often puzzled me; but having
at length arrived at some conclusions on the subject, I was now desirous
to ascertain, by a more extensive examination of the limestone country,
whether the caves containing the osseous breccia presented here similar
characteristics to those I had observed in Wellington Valley.

OSSEOUS BRECCIA.

The first limestone we examined had no crevices sufficiently large to
admit our bodies; but on riding five miles southward to Oakey creek we
found a low ridge extending some miles on its left bank which promised
many openings. We soon found one which I considered to be of the right
sort, namely a perpendicular crevice with red tuff about the sides. Being
provided with candles and ropes we descended perpendicularly first, about
six fathoms to one stage, then obliquely, about half as far to a sort of
floor of red earth; Mr. Rankin, although a large man, always leading the
way into the smallest openings. By these means and by crawling through
narrow crevices we penetrated to several recesses, until Mr. Rankin found
some masses of osseous breccia beneath the limestone rock but so wedged
in that they could be extracted only by digging. Unlike the same red
substance at Wellington Valley where it was nearly as hard as the
limestone, the red calcareous tuff found here was so loose that the mass
of bones was easily detached from it; but none of them were perfect,
except one or two vertebrae of a very large species of kangaroo. Pursuing
this lode of osseous earth we traced it to several other recesses and in
the lower side of an indurated mass (the upper part having been the floor
of our first landing place) we found two imperfect skulls of Dasyuri, the
teeth being however very well preserved. This was, doubtless, an
unvisited cave; for the natives have an instinctive or superstitious
dread of all such places, and it is not therefore probable that man had
ever before visited that cavern. With all our ropes it cost some of us
trouble to get out of it, after passing two hours in candle-light. It may
thus be imagined what a vast field for such interesting researches
remains still unexplored in that district where limestone occurs in such
abundance.

The objects of my journey did not admit of further indulgence in the
pursuit at that time; and I was content with drawing the attention of one
of the party, a young gentleman residing in the neighbourhood, to it, in
hopes he might discover some bones of importance.*

(*Footnote. See a further account of these caves and some others in
Chapter 3.15 below.)

MOUNT GRANARD, FIRST POINT TO BE ATTAINED.

March 19.

Our stores being completed we proceeded along the course of the little
rivulet of Buree, towards the Lachlan. My first object was to gain Mount
Granard, described by Mr. Oxley as the most elevated pic of a very high
range, and laid down on his map to the westward of where the Lachlan
takes a remarkable turn from its general direction towards the low
country more to the southward. I had long thought that it might be
possible to ascertain from this hill whether any range extended westward
of sufficient magnitude to separate the basins of the Murray and the
Darling. I wished to visit it last year, but the loss of Mr. Cunningham,
the consequent delay of the party, and the adverse nature of my
instructions in regard to my own views, together prevented me. I then saw
that the hills along the line I was now about to follow were favourable
for triangulation; but the greater certainty of finding water in a large
river like the Lachlan was my chief inducement for now moving towards its
banks, as the season was of such unusual drought. On this day's journey I
took for my guidance the bearing of a line drawn on the map from Buree,
as fixed by my former survey, to the mouth of Byrne's creek, as laid down
by Mr. Oxley; and which I supposed to be the same as that which descends
from Buree.

HALT ON A DRY CREEK.

The line guided me tolerably well to where I encamped that night. This
was on a fine-looking plain, within sight of the wooded banks of the
creek; but, on examining the bed of the latter, I could find no water,
although I followed it two miles down. There I arrived at a cattle
station named Toogang, where there was water. It was nothing to the old
hands of the Darling to go only TWO miles for water. We suffered no
inconvenience from this; but it was deplorable to see the bed of what
must in some seasons be a fine little stream so completely dry and dusty.
This day we met with a new species of Psoralea.* At the camp I
ascertained the magnetic variation to be 9 degrees 10 minutes 15 seconds
East, by an observation of the star Beta Centauri.

(*Footnote. A genus chiefly inhabiting the Cape of Good Hope, India, the
Levant and North America, of which no species have before been published
from Australia. I was subsequently fortunate enough to discover two more
species of this genus; which with one as yet unpublished, found by Mr.
Allan Cunningham in 1818 in the rocky islands of Dampier's Archipelago on
the north-west coast, makes the number inhabiting Australia to be 4: all
of which are remarkable for their resemblance to the North American form
of the genus. The species we observed on this occasion was a small
spreading herbaceous plant. P. patens, Lindley manuscripts; herbacea,
pubescens, foliis pinnatim trifoliolatis, foliolis dentatis punctatis
lateralibus oblongis obtusis intermedio ovato obtuso basi cuneato, racemo
pedunculato laxo multifloro foliis multo longiore, bracteis subrotundis
striatis obscure multipunctatis, ramis divaricatis.)

March 20.

We proceeded, crossing the channel near the cattle station where I learnt
that it was joined immediately below by that which I had named King's
creek on my last journey; also that water was abundant in it below the
junction. Some natives joined us and Piper prevailed on one of them to be
our guide, as far as he knew the country. The use of such a guide in
following an unexplored watercourse is that bad places for the carts may
be avoided, and the doubles of the stream cut off by the easiest routes.

BREAK A WHEEL.

In crossing a gully which entered the creek near another station, called
Chilberengaba, we broke a wheel, and though we had travelled only about
seven miles we were obliged to encamp, and remain until the carpenter and
the smith could repair it.

ATTEMPT TO ASCEND MARGA.

In the meantime I set out with the native guide for the summit of Marga,
which proved to be one of my old fixed points. It was about seven miles
south-west of our camp; but after a most fatiguing ascent of two steep
and rocky ridges, during great heat, I was obliged to return without
reaching Marga. At the cattle station we heard of a bullock which had
been left by us in an exhausted state during our last expedition; and we
succeeded in bringing it in, and in laying the yoke on its neck for
another visit to the banks of the Darling; it was fitter than any other
of our working bullocks. I added a second species of Psoralea to that
discovered yesterday, a small graceful plant with racemes of purplish
minute flowers, elevated far above the leaves, and on slender stalks so
tough as to be broken only with some difficulty.*

(*Footnote. P. tenax, Lindley manuscripts; herbacea, depressa, perennis,
glabra, foliis glandulosis palmatim 5-foliolatis, foliolis linearibus vel
lineari-oblongis obtusis, racemis cylindraceis longissime pedunculatis
erectis, leguminibus ovatis scabris glabris.)

March 21.

According to arrangements made with Captain King and Mr. Dunlop, the
King's astronomer at the Parramatta observatory, I halted the party this
day in order to make hourly observations of the barometer, thermometer,
the sky, etc. This plan had been strongly recommended by Sir John
Herschel; and for our present purposes it was most desirable in order
that we might ascertain how far the fluctuations of the atmosphere in two
places so distant as Parramatta and Byrne's creek corresponded in these
simultaneous observations. During our last journey some discrepancies in
the heights determined by the barometer on the Darling led to a suspicion
that the fluctuations at such great distances, in situations so
dissimilar, might vary considerably; and this was now to be ascertained.

THE PARTY IMPEDED BY ROCKS.

March 22.

We continued our journey along the left bank of the creek, but with
considerable difficulty and delay occasioned by the projection of the
rocky escarpment of the above-mentioned extremities of Mount Marga; so
that we had to break away masses of rock and move the carts one by one,
all hands assisting. We at length gained a pleasant tract of land on
which the grass was green and luxuriant in consequence of some partial
rain; and on this place I encamped with the intention of next day
ascending Marga. In the creek we found ponds, deep and clear like canals;
their borders being reedy and their margins green. In these ponds the
natives speared several fishes which had however a muddy flavour. Among
them was one, apparently the eel-fish, caught during my first expedition
in the Namoi and upper Darling.* This circumstance was rather in favour
of the supposition that the streams unite; but still the fish seemed
somewhat different.

(*Footnote. Plotosus tandanus see Volume 1.)

SNAKES.

On this day's journey we saw several large snakes; one, large and black,
was shot while swimming in a pond in the creek; the others were of that
kind named, from the beautifully variegated skin, the carpet snake. The
natives considered the latter very fierce and dangerous, saying it never
ran away but always faced or pursued them. It had in fact the flat broad
head and narrow neck which in general characterise the most venomous
snakes, also large fangs hooked inwards, which the natives particularly
pointed out. It had also, near the tail, two articulations with something
like a toe and joint on each, such as I had not observed before in any
other kind of snake. A smaller one of the same kind attacked one of the
party, and also a native, but the former shook it from his clothes, it
then fixed its teeth in the skin of the native who detached it with
difficulty; but as no blood came from the bite he seemed to care little
about it. The native name of this place was Cuenbla.

VIEW FROM MARGA.

March 23.

I set off, accompanied by my black guide mounted, for the top of Marga,
and we reached it this time by a route in which the native displayed the
usual skill of his race. Certainly I never ascended a hill of more
perplexing features, all these heights being also of extremely difficult
access, very steep and extending in the direction of 10 and 12 degrees
East of North. They consist of the sharp edges of inclined strata of hard
purple-coloured clay-slate. I was however rewarded for the fatigues this
hill had cost me, on two different days, not with a fine view, for the
summit was too woody for that, but with a sight of some important points
determined during my late journey; and others which I had then observed
only from the Canobolas but which I was now enabled to fix by angles
observed from this station. The most important point visible besides the
Canobolas was Mount Lachlan, by means of which I determined the true
situation of Marga and the neighbouring hill Nangar; which is rather
higher but more wooded, and 2 1/2 miles distant towards the south-east.
These two form the summits of an isolated mountain mass on the left bank
of Byrne's creek, the top of Marga being about 1000 feet above our camp
on its banks. I drew outlines (according to my usual custom) of all the
hills on the horizon before us, and took angles on them with the
theodolite. Descending by a shorter route I reached the camp in time to
protract my angles, whereby I ascertained to my great satisfaction that
both Marga and Nangar had been truly fixed from the Canobolas, as well as
other points observed in my former journey, the accuracy of which, by a
good angle with Mount Lachlan, I was thus enabled to prove without going
out of my way, besides establishing there a good base for extending the
survey southward.

March 24.

Our guide was now joined by some older natives, and one of them had been
examining the country ahead, being anxious about the safe passage of our
carts. His reconnaissance had not been made in vain, for he led us to an
easy, open pass through a range of which we had heard much from stockmen
as likely to trouble us because, as they said, its rocky extremities
overhung the creek. We crossed it with ease however, guided by the
native. It consisted of granite and evidently belonged geologically to
the ridge traversed by us on the second day after leaving Buree during
our last journey. On the range, green pine trees (callitris) and a
luxuriant crop of grass covering the adjacent country, multitudes of fat
cattle were to be seen on all sides. I had heard that, after crossing the
burnt up surface of the colony, I should see green pastures here, beyond
its limits.

CROSS BYRNE'S CREEK.

We crossed Byrne's creek, near a cattle station called Lagoura, and after
keeping its banks for four miles further (having for that distance
granitic hills on our right) we finally quitted it, and passed over a
grassy plain of the same kind of soil and character as those extensive
level tracts seen during our last journey but having, what seemed
singular to our unaccustomed sight, a coating of green herbage upon it.

NEW PLANTS.

In our progress I found no fewer than three new species of the pretty
genus Trichinium;* a small species of Sida before undiscovered, with
minute yellow flowers,** and also a fine-looking acacia with falcate
leaves, singularly white or rather silvery, and with drooping graceful
branches.***

(*Footnote.

1. Tr. alopecuroideum, Lindley manuscripts; caule ramoso glabro, foliis
lanceolatis glabris subtus scabriusculis, spicis cylindraceis elongatis,
bracteis rotundatis, calycibus herbaceis sursum calvis acutis, rachi
pilosa, cyatho staminum dentato.

2. Tr. parviflorum, Lindley manuscripts; foliis ovatis acutis petiolatis
subtus et caule furfuraceo-tomentosis, spicis gracilibus elongatis,
bracteis acuminatis scariosis, calycibus lanatis, rachi lanata,
staminibus inaequalibus distinctis.

3. Tr. sessilifolium, Lindley manuscripts; foliis oblongis obtusis
sessilibus et caule furfuraceo-tomentosis, spicis oblongis, bracteis
rotundatis lanatis, calycibus longe tubulosis lanatis sursum pilosis,
rachi tomentosa, staminibus inaequalibus distinctis.)

(**Footnote. S. corrugata, Lindley manuscripts; incana, prostrata,
pusilla, foliis subrotundis angulatis cordatis palminerviis serratis,
pedunculis 2-3 filiformibus petiolis longioribus, fructu disciformi
corrugato, coccis monospermis commissuris muricatis.)

(***Footnote. This proved to be a very distinct, undescribed species. A.
leucophylla, Lindley manuscripts; gracilis, ramulis filiformibus
angulatis albido-sericeis, phyllodiis lineari-lanceolatis falcatis apice
uncinatis obscure 2-nerviis appresse et densissime sericeis: margine
superiore basi subglanduloso, racemis umbellatis axillaribus phyllodio
multo brevioribus.)

REACH THE LACHLAN.

Travelling four miles more across level forest land, we reached the banks
of the Lachlan at Waagan,* a cattle station a mile and a half below the
junction of Byrne's creek of Oxley, which we had just traced in its
course from Buree.

(*Footnote. Waagan means a crow in the native language.)

FIND ITS CHANNEL DRY.

I beheld in the Lachlan all the features of the Darling, but on a
somewhat smaller scale. The same sort of large gumtrees, similar steep,
soft, muddy banks; and, even in this place, a margin with an outer bank.
But its waters were gone, except in a few small ponds in the very deepest
parts of its bed. Such was now the state of that river down which my
predecessor's boats had floated. I had during the last winter drawn my
whaleboats 1600 miles overland without finding a river where I could use
them; whereas Mr. Oxley had twice retired by nearly the same routes, and
in the same season of the year, from supposed inland seas!

CHAPTER 3.2.

Continue the journey.
Acacia pendula.
Ascend Mount Amyot.
Field's Plains.
Cracks in the surface.
Ascend Mount Cunningham.
Mr. Oxley's tree.
Rain.
Goobang Creek.
Large fishes.
Heavy rain.
Ascend Mount Allan.
Natives from the Bogan.
Prophecy of a Coradje.
Poisoned waterhole.
Ascend Hurd's Peak.
Snake and bird.
Ride to Mount Granard.
Scarcity of water there.
View from the summit.
Encamp there.
Ascend Bolloon, a hill beyond the Lachlan.
Natives refuse to eat emu.
Native dog.
Kalingalungaguy.
Mr. Stapylton overtakes the party.
Of the plains in general.
Character of the Goobang and Bogan.
Cudjallagong or Regent's Lake.
Nearly dry.
Dead trees in it.
Rocks near it.
Trap and tuff.
Natives there.
Women.
Men.
Their account of the country lower down.
Oolawambiloa.
Gaiety of the natives.
Colour light.
Mr. Stapylton surveys the lake.
Campbell's Lake.
Piper obtains a gin.
Ascend Goulburn range.
View from the summit.
Warranary.
A new Correa.

CONTINUE THE JOURNEY.

March 25.

Following the direction of the general course of the Lachlan as laid down
by Mr. Oxley we crossed a fine tract of open forest land, and at the
distance of five miles arrived at a dry reach. Soon after we passed
Billabugan, a cattle station on the river where the dry branch joined it;
and at three miles further we traversed the southern skirts of a plain,
and finally made a bend of the Lachlan on which we encamped in latitude
33 degrees 24 minutes 28 seconds South. In the course of this day's
journey we discovered a bush resembling the European dwarf elder but with
yellow flowers, and fruit with scarcely any pulp.*

(*Footnote. This proves to be a new genus of Caprifoliaceae, paragraph
mark Sambuceae. Tripetelus australasicus, Lindley manuscripts (tripetelos
having 3 leaves; the calyx has 3 sepals, the corolla 3 petals, the
stamens are 3, and the carpels are also 3). Calyx superus tridentatus.
Corolla rotata, tripartita, lutea, laciniis concavis conniventibus.
Antherae tres, fauce sessiles. Ovarium 3-loculare; ovulis solitariis
pendulis; stigmata 3, sessilia. Fructus subexsuccus, 3-queter, 3-pyrenus,
putamine chartaceo. Caulis herbaceus. Folia opposita, glabra, pinnata,
2-juga cum impari, laciniis lanceolatis acuminatis serratis; glandulis 2
verruciformibus loco stipularum. Flores laxe paniculati.)

Acacia pendula.

March 26.

This day at five miles further we ascended some undulating ground on
which the acacias of the interior grew. We found the same ridged and wavy
surface with the Acacia pendula and the pigeons which usually abound
about such parts of the country. Here we found also a singular species of
Jasmine, forming an upright bush not unlike a Vitex, with short axillary
panicles of white flowers. It proved to be J. lineare, R. Br. We soon
after came upon the borders of the great plain of Gullerong, which
extends about eight miles from east to west, and three northward from a
branch of the river, then quite dry. These I believe were the
Solway-flats of Mr. Oxley. We turned from them late in the afternoon, at
the suggestion of a native wearing a brass-plate like a bottle label, and
on which was engraven Billy Hawthorne. We succeeded in reaching a bend of
the river containing water only after travelling 18 1/4 miles; and in
latitude 33 degrees 23 minutes 21 seconds South.

March 27.

This day being Sunday I halted; especially as the cattle had made an
unusually long journey the day before. I wished to take sights for the
purpose of ascertaining the rate of my chronometer, and to lay down my
surveys. I found that Mr. Oxley's points on this river were much too far
to the westward; a circumstance to be expected as his survey could not,
at that early age of the colony, be connected with Parramatta by actual
measurement; as mine was. Our latitudes however agreed very exactly.

ASCEND MOUNT AMYOT.

March 28.

Continued our journey and, at only a mile and a half from our camp, I was
surprised to find myself at the foot of Mount Amyot, better known to
stockmen by its native name of Camerberdang. I gave the party a bearing
or distant object to advance upon; and I lost no time in ascending the
hill, followed by Woods with my theodolite. From its crest, low as it
was, I still recognised the Canobolas and ascertained from my drawings
formerly made there that even on this hill (Mount Amyot) I had taken an
angle from their summit last season. It was valuable now, enabling me to
determine the true place of the hill from which I was to extend my angles
further westward. I easily recognised Marga and Nangar, and a very useful
and remarkable point of my former survey to the northward of those hills,
also several still more conspicuous ones in the country beyond the
Lachlan.

FIELD'S PLAINS.

To the westward I beheld the view etched in Mr. Oxley's book as Field's
Plains; and what was of much more importance to me then, Mounts
Cunningham, Melville, Allan, etc. etc. on all which, as far as I could, I
took angles, and then descending, rejoined the party about six miles on.
I met at the foot of this hill a colonist, a native of the country.* He
said he had been seventy miles down the river in search of a run for his
cattle; but had found none; and he assured me that, without the aid of
the blacks who were with him on horseback, he could not have obtained
water.

(*Footnote. Mr. James Collits of Mount York.)

Mount Amyot had the appearance of granite from the plains, but I found
that it consisted of the ferruginous sandstone. It is the southern
extremity of a long ridge elevated not more than 200 feet above the
plains at its base. We encamped at a bend of the river, on the border of
a small plain named Merumba in latitude 33 degrees 19 minutes 16 seconds
South. Variation 8 degrees 54 minutes 15 seconds East.

We were here disturbed by herds of cattle running towards our spare
bullocks and mixing with them and the horses. In no district have I seen
cattle so numerous as all along the Lachlan; and notwithstanding the very
dry season, they were nearly all in good condition. We found this day,
near the river bed, a new herbaceous indigo with white flowers and pods
like those of the prickly liquorice (Glycyrrhiza echinata).*

(*Footnote. I. acantho carpa, Lindley manuscripts; caule herbaceo erecto
ramisque angulatis scabriusculis, foliis pinnatis 5-jugis
viscido-pubescentibus; foliolis lineari-lanceolatis mucronulatis margine
scabris, racemis folio aequalibus, leguminibus subrotundo-ovalibus
compressis mucronatis echinatis monospermis.)

March 29.

Our next point was Mount Cunningham (Beery birree of the natives) and we
travelled towards it along the margin of Field's Plains as the angles of
the river allowed.

CRACKS IN THE SURFACE.

This was our straightest course, but we had to keep along the riverbank
for another reason. The plains were full of deep cracks and holes so that
the cart wheels more than once sunk into them, and thus detained us for
nearly an hour. A sagacious black advised us to keep near the riverbank,
and we found the ground better. We encamped at half-past two o'clock,
after a journey of ten miles; and I immediately set out, accompanied by a
native and a man carrying my theodolite, both on horseback, for the
highest or northern point of Mount Cunningham (a). The distance was full
five miles; yet we could not proceed direct on horseback, the scorched
plains being full of deep, wide cracks; and we were therefore compelled
to take a circuitous route nearer the river.

ASCEND MOUNT CUNNINGHAM.

There our guide called up three savage-looking natives with spears, whom
he described to be the natives of the hill, and they accompanied us to
the top. With some difficulty we led our horses near the crest, our new
friends always keeping the vantage ground of us, apparently from
apprehension. At length I planted my theodolite on the highest part of
the summit which commanded a fine view of the western horizon; and from
the mouths of my sable guides I obtained the native names, in all their
purity, of the various hills in sight. The most distant, named Bolloon,
were said to be near the great lake Cudjallagong--no doubt Regent's Lake
of Oxley--and a peak they called Tolga I took to be Hurd's Peak of the
same traveller.

NYORORONG.

Still I saw nothing on the horizon in the direction of his Mount Granard,
and in no other any hill of magnitude, except in the quarter whence I
came, where I still discerned my old friends Marga and Nangar, with
Nyororong and Berabidjal, high hills more to the southward.

Mount Cunningham consists of ferruginous sandstone. The sun had reached
the horizon before I left the summit, which I did not until I had
obtained an angle on every visible point. We arrived at the camp soon
after seven o'clock. Latitude by an observation of Cor Leonis 33 degrees
15 minutes 27 seconds South.

MR. OXLEY'S TREE.

March 30.

I ascertained accidentally this morning that we were abreast of the spot
where Mr. Oxley left the Lachlan and proceeded southward. This I learnt
from a marked tree which a native pointed out to me distant about 250
yards south from our camp, on the opposite side of a branch of the river.
On this tree were still legible the names of Mr. Oxley and Mr. Evans; and
although the inscription had been there nineteen years the tree seemed
still in full vigour; nor could its girth have altered much, judging from
the letters which were still as sharp as when first cut, only the bark
having overgrown part of them had been recently cleared away a little as
if to render the letters more legible. I endeavoured to preserve still
longer an inscription which had withstood the fires of the bush and the
tomahawks of the natives for such a length of time by making a drawing of
it as it then appeared.

By Mr. Oxley's journal we learn that where the river formed two branches
he, on the 17th of May, 1817, hauled up his boats, and on the following
day commenced his intended journey towards the south-east. But our
latitudes also assisted us in verifying the spot. Mr. Oxley made the
latitude of his camp (doubtless near the tree) 33 degrees 15 minutes 34
seconds South which gives a difference of seven seconds for the 250 yards
between the tree and my camp. The variation of the needle Mr. Oxley found
to be here, in 1817, 7 degrees 0 minutes 8 seconds East and I had made it
at the last camp (Merimbah) 8 degrees 54 minutes 15 seconds East, or
nearly two degrees more, in a lapse of 19 years. The longitude of this
point as now ascertained by trigonometrical measurement from Parramatta
was 147 degrees 33 minutes 50 seconds East, or 17 minutes 50 seconds
(equal on this parallel to 17 1/4 miles) nearer to Sydney than it is laid
down by Mr. Oxley.

We proceeded from this camp towards the southern extremity of Mount
Cunningham, under which a small branch of the Lachlan passes so close
that the party was occupied an hour and a half in removing rocks to open
a passage for the carts. We then got into an open country in which we
soon saw the same dry branch of the Lachlan before us; but we turned more
to the north-west until we reached a slightly undulated surface. No
branch of the river extends to the northward of Mount Cunningham as shown
on Mr. Oxley's map; but a small tributary watercourse, then dry, skirts
the eastern side of the hill, and enters that branch of the Lachlan which
we were upon.

Yesterday and this day had been so excessively hot (82 degrees in the
shade) that I confidently anticipated rain, especially when the sky
became cloudy to the westward, while the wind blew steadily from the
opposite quarter. A dense body of vapour in the shape of stratus, or fall
cloud of the meteorologist, was at the same time stretching eastward
along the distant horizon on both sides of us. After crossing some sound,
open plains of stiff clay, guided by the natives, we gained an extensive
pond of muddy water and encamped on a hill of red sand on its northern
bank, and under shelter of a grove of callitris trees.

RAIN.

The wind now began to blow and the sky, to my great delight, being at
length overcast, promised rain enough to fill the streams and waterholes:
at twilight it began to come down. In the woods we passed through this
day we found a curious willow-like acacia with the leaves slightly
covered with bloom, and sprinkled on the underside with numerous reddish
minute drops of resin.* The Pittosporum angustifolium we also recognised
here, loaded with its singular orange-coloured bivalved fruit.

(*Footnote. This is allied in some respects to A. verniciflua and
exudans, but is a very distinct and well-marked species. A. salicina,
Lindley manuscripts; glaucescens, ramulis angulatis, phyllodiis
divaricatis lineari et oblongo-lanceolatis utrinque angustatis
obtusissimis uninerviis venulis pinnatis: ipso apice glandulosis subtus
resinoso-punctatis, capitulis 3-5 racemosis phyllodiis triplo
brevioribus.)

March 31.

It rained during the night and this morning the sky seemed as if it would
continue; the mercury in the barometer also falling, we halted. On a dry
sandhill, with wood and water at hand, we were well prepared to await the
results of a flood; some good grass also was found for the cattle on firm
ground at the distance of about two miles.

GOOBANG CREEK.

Mount Allan (Wollar of the natives) lay north-east by north, at a
distance of 3 3/4 miles. It was not a conspicuous or commanding hill, but
between it and our camp we this day discovered a feature of considerable
importance. This was the Goobang creek of our former journey, to all
appearance here as great a river as the Bogan and indeed its channel,
where we formerly saw it, contained deep ponds of clear water at a season
when the muddy holes of the Bogan had nearly failed us. Here the Goobang
much resembled that river in the depth of its bed and the character of
its banks: and its sources and tributaries must be also similar to those
of the Bogan. Hervey's range gives birth to the one, Croker's range to
the other and, their respective courses being along the opposite sides of
the higher land extending westward between the Lachlan and Macquarie, all
their tributaries must fall from the same ridge. Of these Mr. Oxley
crossed several in his route from the Lachlan to the Macquarie;
Emmeline's Valley creek belonging to the basin of the Goobang;
Coysgaine's ponds and Allan's water to that of the Bogan. It was rather
unfortunate, considering how much has been said about the Lachlan
receiving no tributaries in its long course, that Mr. Oxley left
unexplored that part where a tributary of such importance as the Goobang
joins it; especially as the floods of this stream lay the country below
Mount Cunningham under water, and are the sole cause of that swampy
appearance which Mr. Oxley observed from the hill on looking westward. It
would appear that this traveller's route northward was nearly parallel to
the general course of the Goobang. The name this stream receives from the
natives here is Billibang, Goobang being considered but one of its
tributaries. Its course completes the analogy between the rivers and
plains on each side, and the supposed disappearance of the channel of the
Lachlan seemed consequently as doubtful as the mysterious termination of
the Macquarie.

April 1.

The rain continuing, the party remained encamped. The barometer had
fallen since we came here from 29.442, at which it stood last night at
ten, to 29.180, which I noted this morning at six: the thermometer
continuing about 60 degrees of Fahrenheit.

LARGE FISHES.

On dragging our net through the muddy pond we captured two fishes, but of
monstrous size, one weighing 17 pounds, the other about 12 pounds.
Although very different in shape, I recognised in them the fish of the
perch kind with large scales* and the eel-fish** formerly caught by us in
the Namoi. But the former when taken in that river was coarse and tasted
of mud, whereas this ruffe, although so large was not coarse, but rich,
and of excellent flavour--and so fat that the flakes fell into crumbs
when fried. This day a bird of a new species was shot by Roach. It was of
a swallow kind, about the size of a snipe, of a leaden colour, with dark
head and wings.

(*Footnote. Cernua bidyana.)

(**Footnote. Plotosus tandanus.)

HEAVY RAIN.

April 2.

The rain continued through the night and this morning it fell rather
heavily, so that enough of water could be gathered from the surface of
the plains near our camp to preclude the necessity for our having
recourse to the muddy pool. The barometer began to rise slowly from seven
in the morning, when it had reached its minimum; but the weather
continued hazy, with drizzling rain (from the south-west) until four
o'clock, when the clouds slowly drew up. The plains were not yet at all
saturated, although become too soft for our carts. The evening was
cloudy, but by ten o'clock the state of the barometer was such as to
leave little doubt about the return of fair weather. We this day found in
the woods to the northward a most beautiful species of Trichinium, with
spiky feathered pale yellow flowers, sometimes as much as six inches
long.*

(*Footnote. Tr. nobile, Lindley manuscripts; foliis caulinis obovatis
cuspidatis subundulatis ramisque corymbosis angulatis glabris, spica
cylindracea: rachi lanata, calycis laciniis 3 acutis 2 retusis, bracteis
puberulis. Differs from Tr. densum, Cunningham in the bracts not being
villous at the base, and from T. macrocephalum, R. Br. in having much
larger flowers, which are yellow not lilac, and in three of the segments
of the calyx being acute.)

ASCEND MOUNT ALLAN.

April 3.

Thick fog in the morning. The day being Sunday the party remained in the
camp; but I do not think we could have left it from the soft state of the
plains, however desirable it might have been to proceed. After twelve I
rode to Wollar (Mount Allan) with the theodolite, and from its summit I
intersected most of the hills seen from Mounts Amyot and Cunningham. A
small wart on the eastern horizon, very distant yet conspicuous, I found
to be Mount Juson, the hill on which I had stood with the brother of the
botanist whose name had been given to this hill by Mr. Oxley.

The sameness in the surface of this country is apparently owing to the
simplicity of its geological composition. All the hills I ascended below
the junction of Byrne's creek consist of ferruginous sandstone, similar
to that which constitutes all the hills I saw on, and even beyond, the
Darling.

On passing to and from Mount Allan we crossed, at three-quarters of a
mile from the camp, Goobang creek, the bed of which exactly resembles
that of the Bogan. The remains of drifted weeds on the trees and the
uniformity of its channel showed that it is a considerable tributary of
the Lachlan. At length the stars appeared in the evening, and I could
once more see my unerring guides, the faithful Little Dog, and the mighty
Hercules,* whereby our latitude seemed to be 33 degrees 8 minutes 55
seconds South.

(*Footnote. Procyon, in Canis Minor and Regulus in Leo. The latter being
also called Hercules and Cor Leonis.)

NATIVES FROM THE BOGAN.

At the camp we recognised among the natives seated at our fire two of our
friends from the Bogan. Their little shovel of hard wood (not used on the
Lachlan) and one of the tomahawks formerly distributed by us left no room
to doubt whether we were right about their features.

PROPHECY OF A CORADJE.

One was an old man and a Coradje, the other was a boy. They disappeared
in the evening, but the Coradje was so far civil as to tell the men that,
having heard The Major was praying for rain, he had caused the late fall.
This priest had also prophesied a little for our information, telling the
men that a day was at hand when two of them would go out to watch the
bullocks and would never return.

April 4.

The surface being sufficiently dry to enable us to travel we accordingly
continued our journey and, crossing the Goobang at 5 1/4 miles, we kept
the right bank of it during the day. The surface on that side was dry and
firm; and it may be remarked that if ever it becomes desirable to open a
line of communication from Sydney towards the country on the lower part
of the Murray, the right bank of the Goobang will probably be found the
best direction as the adjacent valley affords both grass and water for
the passage of cattle, and the doubtful plains of the Lachlan may be thus
avoided.

POISONED WATERHOLE.

We finally encamped on the Lachlan at the junction of the Goobang, in
latitude 33 degrees 5 minutes 20 seconds; longitude East 147 degrees 13
minutes 10 seconds. There the river contained some deep pools and we
expected to catch fish; but Piper told us that the holes had been
recently poisoned, a process adopted by the natives in dry seasons, when
the river no longer flows, for bringing the fish to the surface of deep
ponds and thus killing the whole; I need not add that none of us got a
bite. All these holes were full of recently cut boughs of the eucalyptus,
so that the water was tinged black.

ASCEND HURD'S PEAK.

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