Tuesday, 11th June, Dense Forest and Scrub.
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Fifth Expedition
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Tuesday, 11th June, Dense Forest and Scrub. Leaving Woodforde, Wall, and the pack-horses, I took Thring with me, and proceeded on the same course to see if I could get through the horrid forest and scrub, or meet with a change of country, or find some water. At two miles we came upon some grass again, which continued, and at another mile the forest became much more open and splendidly grassed, which again revived my sinking hopes; but alas, it only lasted about two miles, when we again entered the forest thicker than ever. At eleven miles it became so dense that it was nearly impenetrable. The horses would not face it; when forced, they made a rush through, tearing everything we had on, and wounding us severely by running against the dead timber (which was as sharp as a lancet) and through the branches. I saw that it was hopeless to force through any further. Not a drop of water have we seen, although the ground is quite moist--the horses sinking above the fetlock. The soil is red and sandy; the mulga from thirty to forty feet high and very straight; the bark has a stringy appearance. There is a great quantity of it lying dead on the ground, which causes travelling to become very difficult. I therefore returned to where I left Woodforde and Wall, and came back ten miles on yesterday's journey, and camped. This morning, about 5.30, we observed a comet bearing 110 degrees; length of tail, 10 degrees, and 10 degrees above the horizon. Wind, south-east.