- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Fourth Expedition
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
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Thursday 12th April, The Hugh. Started for the bluff. At eight miles we again struck the creek coming from the west, and several other gum creeks coming from the range and joining it. We have now entered the lower hills of the range. Again have we travelled through a splendid country for grass, but as we approached the creek it became a little stony. At twelve miles we found a number of springs in the range. Here I obtained an observation of the sun. As we approached near the bluff, our route became very difficult; we could not get up the creek for precipices, and were obliged to turn in every direction. About two miles from where I obtained the observation, we arrived with great difficulty at the foot of the bluff; it has taken us all the afternoon. I expected to have gone to the top of it to-night, but it is too late. It will take half a day, it is so high and rough. We are camped at a good spring, where I have found a very remarkable palm-tree, with light-green fronds ten feet long, having small leaves a quarter of an inch in breadth, and about eight inches in length, and a quarter of an inch apart, growing from each side, and coming to a sharp point. They spread out like the top of the grass-tree, and the fruit has a large kernel about the size of an egg, with a hard shell; the inside has the taste of a cocoa-nut, but when roasted is like a potato. Here we have also the india-rubber tree, the cork-tree, and several new plants. This is the only real range that I have met with since leaving the Flinders range. I have named it the McDonnell Range, after his Excellency the Governor-in-Chief of South Australia, as a token of my gratitude for his kindness to me on many occasions. The east bluff I have named Brinkley Bluff, after Captain Brinkley, of Adelaide, and the west one I have named Hanson Bluff, after the Honourable R. Hanson, of Adelaide. The range is composed of gneiss rock and quartz.