Saturday, 4th June, Hawker Springs.
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Second Expedition
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Saturday, 4th June, Hawker Springs. This morning the horse does not look much better, but still I must push on. Started at 8 towards the highest point of the next range. At one mile struck a gum creek coming from the Davenport range, and running to the north of east; the bed sandy and grassy. At four miles another gum creek of the same description, with the gum-trees stunted. At eight miles and a half struck three creeks joining at about a quarter of a mile to the east; the centre one is gum, and the other two myall. At twelve miles changed my course to 29 degrees to examine three dark-coloured hills, where I think there will be springs. At a mile and a quarter came upon a small batch of springs round the north side of the hills in a broad grassy valley, with plenty of good water. Changed my course again to 318 degrees towards the highest point of the range. At one mile a myall and gum creek; at three miles another gum creek; at seven miles a very large and broad gum creek, spread out into numerous channels. I have not the least doubt but there is water above and below, judging from the number of tracks of natives and emus that have been up and down the creek. As this is the largest creek that I have passed, and is likely to become as good as Chambers Creek, which it very much resembles, I have called it The Blyth, after the Honourable Arthur Blyth. I have named the range to the east The Hanson Range, after the Honourable R.D. Hanson. At nine miles and a half attained the highest point of the range, and built a cone of stones thereon, and have named it Mount Younghusband, after the Honourable William Younghusband. From it I had a good view of the surrounding country, which seems to be plentifully supplied with springs. To the north-west is another isolated range like this; I should think it is about seven hundred feet high. I have named it Mount Kingston, after the Honourable G.S. Kingston, Speaker of the House of Assembly. To the north the broken ranges continue, and in the distance there is a long flat-topped range, broken in some places. It seems to be closing upon my course on the last bearing. I cannot judge of the distance, the mirage being so great. Descended from the mount, and proceeded on a bearing of 336 degrees towards a spring that I saw from the top. As we were rounding the mount to the east, we found eight springs before we halted, in a distance of three miles; some were running, and others were choked up, but soft and boggy. At dark arrived at another batch of springs--not those that I intended going to--they are on the banks of a small creek, close to and coming from the range; they are not so active as the others, and taste a little brackish; they are coated with soda, saltpetre, and salt. The horse seems to be very ill; he has again attempted to lie down two or three times. I cannot imagine what is the matter with him.