Category: Edward John Eyre - Vol 1 - Ch 9
Written by Edward John Eyre
October 26. — Sending the dray on under the guidance of the native boy, I rode with Mr. Scott up to Mr. White’s station to wish him good bye, and to make another effort to secure an additional dog or two; finding that he would not sell the noble mastiff I so much wished to have, I bought from him two good kangaroo dogs, at rather a high price, with which I hastened on after the drays, and soon overtook them, but not before my new dogs had secured two fine kangaroos. For the first few miles we crossed a low flat country, which afterwards became undulating and covered with dwarf scrub, after this we passed over barren ridges for about three miles, with quartz lying exposed on the surface and timbered by the bastard gum or forest casuarinae. We then descended to a level sandy region, clothed with small brush, and having very many salt lakes scattered over its surface; around the hollows in which these waters were collected, and occasionally around basins that were now dry, we found large trees of the gum, together with a few casuarinae. A very similar kind of low country appeared to extend far to the eastward and north-west.
Kangaroos were very numerous, especially near those hollows, that were surrounded by gum-trees, to which they retired for shelter during the heat of the day. We encamped at night in the midst of many of these salt lakes, without any water, but the grass was good. Our stage had been 25 miles upon a course of N. 25 degrees W. After watching the horses for a few hours, we tied them up for the night, not daring to trust them loose without water. A few natives had been seen during the day, but they ran away.
A singular feature attending the salt lakes, or the hollows where water had formerly lodged, was the existence of innumerable small stones, resembling biscuits or cakes in shape, perfectly circular and flat, but a little convexed in the upper surface, they were of various sizes, and appeared to consist of lime, being formed into their present shape by the action of water. Very similar ones have since been found in the volcanic region near Mount Gambier, on the southern coast of New Holland. From our present camp were seen before us to the north-west some low green looking ranges, lightly timbered, and promising a better country than we had hitherto met with.