config

August 13.—Continuing our course to the N. W. I took on the cart for 13 miles to a large dry channel, coming from the hills, upon which we halted for an hour or two to rest and feed the horses, as there were some sprinklings of grass around. We had now a change in the appearance of the country; the ironstone ranges seemed to decrease rapidly in elevation to the north, and the region around appeared more level, with many very singular looking table–topped elevations from 50 to 300 feet in height and with steep precipitous sides which were red, with the ironstone above, and white, with a substance like chalk, below. The country was covered with salsolae, and we passed the beds of many dried up salt lakes. Ascending the highest ridge near us, I found Lake Torrens was no longer visible, being shut out by the sandy ridges to the westward, whilst the low ironstone hills impeded our view to the north, and to the east. Having given our horses water, we buried twelve gallons against our return, and sending back the man with the cart, and extra horses, the native boy and I still pushed on to the N. W., taking a pack–horse to carry our provisions and a few quarts of water for ourselves.

As we proceeded, the country changed to extensive plains and undulations of stones and gravel, washed perfectly level by water, and with the stones as even in size and as regularly laid as if they had been picked out and laid by a paviour. At intervals were interspersed many of the fragments of table land I have alluded to before, only perhaps a little less elevated than they had previously been; we passed also the beds of several small dry watercourses, and encamped upon one of the largest, long after dark, having travelled twenty–five miles since we left the cart, and having made in the whole a day’s journey of thirty–seven miles. There was tolerable food in the bed of the watercourse, but the horses were thirsty and eat but little. Unfortunately, in crossing the stony ground, one of them cast a shoe, and began to go a little lame.