- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Sixth Expedition
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
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Monday, 21st July, Anna Creek and Springs. Again passed a miserable night with the mosquitoes. Started at eight o'clock; course, north-north-west. At three miles came upon another extensive fresh-water marsh, too boggy to cross. There is rising ground to the north-west and north; the river seems to run between. I can see clumps of bamboos and trees, by which I suppose it runs at about a mile to the north-north-west. The ground for the last three miles is of a sandy nature, and light-brown colour, with ironstone gravel on the surface, volcanic rock occasionally cropping out. The borders of the marsh are of the richest description of black alluvial soil, and when the grass has sprung after it has been burnt, it has the appearance of a rich and very thick crop of green wheat. I am now compelled to alter my course to 30 degrees south of east, to get across a water creek coming into the marsh, running deep, broad and boggy, and so thick with trees, bushes, and strong vines interwoven throughout it, that it would take a day to cut a passage through. At three miles we crossed the stream, and proceeded again on the north-north-west course, but at a mile and a half were stopped by another creek of the same description. Changed to east, and at half a mile was able to cross it also, and again went on my original bearing. Continued on it for three miles, when we were again stopped by another running stream, but this one I was able to cross without going far out of my course. Proceeded on the north-north-west course, passing over elevated ground of the same description as the first three miles. At seventeen miles came upon a thick clump of trees, with beautiful palms growing amongst them; examined it and found it to have been a spring, but now dry. Proceeded on another mile, and was again stopped by what seemed to be a continuation of the large marsh; we now appeared to have got right into the middle of it. It was to be seen to the south-west, north-east, and south-east of us. Camped on a point of rising ground running into it. The timber on the rises between the creeks is stringy-bark, small gums, and in places a nasty scrub, very sharp, which tore a number of our saddle-bags: it is a very good thing the patches of it are not broad. The grass, where it has not been burned, is very thick and high--up to my shoulder when on horseback. About a mile from here, to the west, I can see what appears to be the water of the river, running through clumps of trees and bamboos, beyond which, in the distance, are courses of low rising ground, in places broken also with clumps of trees; the course of the river seems to be north-north-west. On the east side of the marsh is also rising ground; the marsh in that direction seems to run five or six miles before it meets the rising ground, and appears after that to come round to the north. Nights cool. Latitude, 12 degrees 28 minutes 19 seconds. Wind, south-east.