Monday, 10th June, Chain of Ponds.
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Fifth Expedition
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Monday, 10th June, Chain of Ponds. Started at 7.55 a.m., course 275 degrees, with Thring, Woodforde, and Wall, nine horses, and fourteen days' provisions. The first five miles were over a grassy plain, with stunted gum and other trees. It was very soft, the horses sinking up to their knees. We met with a little rain water at three miles, where the soil became sandy; continued to be more so as we advanced, with lancewood and other scrubs growing upon it. At fourteen miles gained the top of a sand rise, which seems to be the termination of the sand hills that I turned back from on my west course south of this. From here the country seems to be a dense forest and scrub; no rising ground visible. Camped at 5 p.m., distance thirty-two miles. The whole journey from the sand hills has been through a dense forest of scrubs of all kinds--hedge-tree, gum, mulga, lancewood, etc. We have had great difficulty in forcing the horses through it so far; they are very tired. It is the thickest scrub I have yet been in. Ground very soft; heavy travelling, with the exception of the last five miles, where little rain seems to have fallen. I am afraid this will be another hopeless journey. I fully expected to have got water to-night from the recent rains, but there is not a drop. The country is such that the surface cannot retain it, were it to fall in much larger quantities. I shall try a little further on to-morrow. I had a hole dug, to see if any rain had fallen, and found that it had penetrated two feet below the surface, below which it is quite dry. Wind, east.