config

June 28. — Upon getting up this morning we saw the smoke of native fires along the margin of the lake, at less than a mile from us. They had already noticed our fire, and called out repeatedly to us, but as I did not wish to come into communication with them at all, I did not reply. Soon afterwards we saw them in the midst of the lake carrying boughs, and apparently fishing. Three miles from the lake we crossed a small salt stream, and a mile further another. Four miles beyond the latter we came to a very deep narrow salt lake, swarming with swans, pelicans, and ducks. As the passage between the lake and the sea appeared to be scrubby, and very similar to that we had found so much difficulty in passing yesterday, I turned to the north-west to head it inland; but had not proceeded far before I found our progress stopped by a large salt-water stream, which joined the lake, and whose course was through steep precipitous ravines. By following the river upwards I came to a place where we could descend into its basin, and as the water there, though brackish, was still drinkable, I halted for the night after a stage of fourteen miles. The horses were a good deal tired with the rough hilly road they had passed over, and having been without water last night, stood greatly in need of rest.

In the afternoon Wylie took the rifle to shoot some of the swans and ducks around us, but was not successful. I remained at the camp, breaking down and clearing a passage amongst the shrubs and trees which grew in the rocky bed of the watercourse, to enable us to get our horses readily across to-morrow. Our position bore S. W. from East Mount Barren, E. from a bluff range three miles from us, and N. 55 degrees E. from some high hills in the direction of Middle Mount Barren. The course of the stream we were encamped upon being nearly north and south.