- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Fourth Expedition
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
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Wednesday, 11th April, Bend of the Hugh. Got the things put pretty well to rights, and started towards the high bluff. I find that my poor little mare, Polly, has got staked in the fetlock-joint, and is nearly dead lame; but I must proceed. At six miles and a half we again crossed the Hugh, and at another mile found it coming through the range, which is a double one. The south range is red sandstone, the next is hard white stone, and also red sandstone, with a few hills of ironstone; a well-grassed valley lying between. The two gorges are rocky, and in some places perpendicular, with some gum-trees growing on the sides. The cucumber plant thrives here in great quantities, and water is abundant. At twelve miles we got through both the gorges of the range, which I have named the Waterhouse Range, after the Honourable the Colonial Secretary. The country between last night's camp and the range is a red sandy soil, with a few sand hills, on which is growing the spinifex, but the valleys between are broad and beautifully grassed. At fifteen miles again crossed the Hugh, coming from the east, with splendid gum-trees of every size lining the banks. The pine was also met with here for the first time. There is a magnificent hole of water here, long and deep, with rushes growing round it. I think it is a spring; the water seems to come from below a large bed of conglomerate quartz. I should say it was permanent. Black cockatoos and other birds abound here, and there are numbers of native tracks all about. I hoped to-day to have gained the top of the bluff, which is still seven or eight miles off, and appears to be so very rough that I anticipate a deal of difficulty in crossing it. I am forced to halt at this bend of the creek, in consequence of the little mare becoming so lame that she is unable to proceed further to-day. Our hands are very bad from being torn by the scrub, and the flies are a perfect torment. Indications of scurvy are beginning to show themselves upon us. Wind west; cool night.