Saturday, 10th May, The Forest.
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Sixth Expedition
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Saturday, 10th May, The Forest. Started at five minutes to seven o'clock a.m. (same course, 290 degrees). Almost immediately encountered a dense forest of tall mulga, with an immense quantity of dead wood lying on the ground. It was with the greatest difficulty that the horses could be made to move through it. At a mile it became a little more open, which continued for six miles. At seven miles I thought, from the appearance of the country, that it was dipping towards the north-north-west; I therefore changed my course to north-west, and in less than a mile again entered a dense forest of tall mulga, thicker than I had yet been into. Continued pushing, tearing, and winding into it for three miles. The further I went the denser it became. I saw that it was hopeless to continue any further. We were travelling full speed, and making little more than a mile an hour throughout the ten miles gone over to-day. The country is a red light soil and covered with abundance of grass, but completely dried up. No rain seems to have fallen here for a length of time. We have not seen a bird, nor heard the chirrup of any to disturb the gloomy silence of the dark and dismal forest--thus plainly indicating the absence of water in and about this country. I therefore retraced my steps towards Nash Springs; passed our last night's camp, and continued on till sundown, one of the horses being completely knocked up. Camped without water. Wind, south-east.