Last of the Packhorse Stockmen Vol 2 - 2 (The Man Emerges : call of the Kimberley)

Spinifex and Sand
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Beyond the Black Stump

Austin's horses that died from poison at Poison Rock. They now state they are only horses' bones, and not men's, as first stated. Travelling in the direction of North 30 degrees East for about ten miles, we reached some granite rocks, with a water-hole in them, called Coorbedar. Passed over very rough, low, quartz hills, covered with acacia thickets, etc.

At four miles passed a water-hole called Yeergolling; at seven miles a small one called Gnurra; and another at eight miles called Munnarra. Rested our horses at Coorbedar.

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Found camp to be in south latitude 29 degrees 24 minutes 43 seconds by meridian altitudes of the sun and Regulus, and in longitude degrees 6 minutes East. The supply of water from the rock having been used, I went, in company with Mr. Hamersley, to a spot one mile and a half South-South-West from Coorbedar, called Dowgooroo, where we dug a well and procured a little water, to which I intend shifting to-morrow, as I propose staying in this vicinity for two days, so as to give me time to visit Warne, the large river spoken of by Jemmy.

Started this morning in company with Tommy Windich and a native boy one of the nine who joined us at Mount Churchman to examine the locality called Warne. Steering North 42 degrees East magnetic for about seven miles, we came to a grassy flat about half a mile wide, with a stream-bed trending south running through it. The natives state it to be dry in summer, but at present there is abundance of water, and in wet seasons the flat must be almost all under water. After following the flat about seven miles we returned towards camp, about five miles, and bivouacked.

Returned this morning to Dowgooroo and found all well. Rain, which we were much in want of, fell lightly most of the day. Steered this morning about North 38 degrees East magnetic for eight miles, and camped by a shallow lake of fresh water--the bivouac of the 10th. Here we met a party of twenty-five natives friends of my native Jemmy and the nine who joined us at Mount Churchman who had a grand corroboree in honour of the expedition.

They stated that at Bouincabbajilimar there were the remains of a number of horses, but no men's bones or guns, and pointed in the direction of Poison Rock, where Mr. Austin lost nine horses.

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Being now satisfied that the natives were alluding to the remains of Mr. Austin's horses, I resolved to steer to the eastward, towards a spot called by the native, Jemmy, Noondie, where he states he heard the remains of white men were. Bidding farewell to all the natives, we steered in a south-easterly direction for fifteen miles, and camped in a rough hollow called Durkying; cypress and acacia thickets the whole way.

One of our horses having strayed, we did not start till The thickets were a little less dense than usual, but without any grass, except at the spots mentioned. By meridian altitudes of Mars and Regulus, we were in south latitude 29 degrees 30 minutes 30 seconds, and in longitude about degrees 30 minutes east. Steering North-East for four miles, and North-North-East for seven miles, over sandy soil, with thickets of acacia and cypress, we bivouacked on an elevated grassy spot, called Earroo, with water in granite rocks.

Rested at Earroo; horses enjoying good feed. By meridian altitudes of Regulus and Mars, camp at Earroo was in south latitude 29 degrees 23 minutes 3 seconds, and in longitude degrees 35 minutes East; weather very cloudy; barometer Started 7. Sandy soil, thickets of cypress, acacia, etc.

Found camp to be in south latitude 29 degrees 12 minutes 43 seconds by meridian altitudes of Regulus and Aquilae Altair ; barometer Steering North 70 degrees East for two miles and a half, we saw a low hill called Yeeramudder, bearing North 62 degrees 30 minutes East magnetic, distant about seventeen miles, for which we steered, and camped to the north of it, on a fine patch of grass with a little rain-water on some granite rocks. At eleven miles crossed a branch of a dry salt lake, which appears to run far to the eastward.

Steering about North 85 degrees East magnetic for fourteen miles, attempted to cross the lake we had been leaving a little to the southward, making for a spot supposed by us to be the opposite shore, but on arriving at which was found to be an island. As we had great difficulty in reaching it, having to carry all the loads the last yards, our horses saving themselves with difficulty, and, being late, I resolved to leave the loads and take the horses to another island, where there was a little feed, on reaching which we bivouacked without water, all being very tired.

source site On examining this immense lake I found that it was impossible to get the horses and loads across it; I was therefore compelled to retrace my steps to where we first entered it, which the horses did with great difficulty without their loads. I was very fortunate in finding water and feed about three miles North-North-West, to which we took the horses and bivouacked, leaving on the island all the loads, which we shall have to carry at least half way, three quarters of a mile, the route being too boggy for the horses.

Went over to the lake in company with Messrs. Monger, Hamersley, and Tommy Windich, with four horses. Succeeded in getting all the loads to the mainland, carrying them about three quarters of a mile up to our knees in mud, from which point the lake became a little firmer, and the horses carried the loads out. I cannot speak too highly of the manner in which my companions assisted me on this trying occasion. Having been obliged to work barefooted in the mud, the soles of Mr. Hamersley's feet were in a very bad state, and he was hardly able to walk for a fortnight.

Seeing a native fire several miles to the southward, I intend sending Tommy Windich and Jemmy in search of the tribe to-morrow, in order that I may question them respecting the reported death of white men to the eastward.

SPINIFEX AND SAND

They bin tied up prisoner. Monger saw two natives following up our trail, and within fifty yards of us. The fact that there was only a small proportion of women in. Some surprise has been expressed at this course, for, according to all accounts, the man was, to use a colloquial expression, 'as mad as a snake'. Might be they don't like working any more I reckon.

Went over to the lake with all the horses, and brought the loads to the camp. Started Tommy and Jemmy in search of the natives.

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After returning to camp, overhauled all the pack bags, and dried and re-packed them, ready for a fresh start on Monday morning. Also washed the mud off the horses, who appear to be doing well, and fast recovering from the effects of the bogging. Tommy and Jemmy returned this evening, having seen some natives after dark, but were unable to get near them.

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Went with Tommy Windich and Jemmy on foot to follow the tracks of the natives seen yesterday. Seeing no chance of overtaking them, as they appeared to be making off at a great rate, and were twelve hours in advance of us, we returned, after following the tracks for five miles across the lake. The camp was reached at 2 p.

The Call of Wild Country - The Kimberley Australia

This spot, which I named Retreat Rock, I found to be in south latitude 29 degrees 3 minutes 51 seconds by meridian altitudes of Regulus and Mars, and in about longitude degrees 16 minutes east. Some of the horses having strayed, we were not able to start till From this bivouac, a very remarkable peaked hill, called Woolling, which I named Mount Elain, bore North degrees 15 minutes East magnetic, distant about twenty miles; and two conspicuous hills, close together, called Yeadie and Bulgar, bore North degrees East magnetic.

Dense thickets, acacia, cypress, etc. Steering for Yeadie and Bulgar for five miles, and came to some granite rocks with water, where we gave drink to our thirsty horses. Leaving the party to follow, I went with Jemmy in advance to look for water, which we found in a rough stream-bed, and brought the party to it. This afternoon went with Jemmy to the summit of Yeadie, and took a round of angles.

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The local attraction was so great on this hill that the prismatic compass was useless; luckily I had my pocket sextant with me, by which I obtained the included angles. From the summit of Yeadie the view was very extensive. The great lake that we had already followed for forty miles ran as far as the eye could reach to the east and south, studded with numerous islands; low ranges of hills in every direction.

By meridian altitudes of Mars and Regulus, camp was in south latitude, 28 degrees 58 minutes 50 seconds, and in longitude about degrees 39 minutes East, Yeadie bearing North degrees East magnetic, distant about two miles. Moving in about a northerly direction for nine miles, we turned to the eastward, rounded a branch of Lake Barlee, towards some loose granite rocks, where we encamped, but could not find water.

Sent Jemmy over to another rock one mile southward, where he found a fine permanent water-hole, to which we took the horses after dark. Distance travelled to-day about eighteen miles. Tommy shot a fine emu, which was a great treat to us all. Shifted the party over to the water found last night, one mile distant, and camped.

Found camp to be in south latitude 28 degrees 53 minutes, and in longitude about degrees 50 minutes east. Marked a small tree with the letter F. Some of the horses having strayed, we did not start till 9. After following Lake Barlee for nine miles, it turned to the southward. Then scouring the country in every direction for water without success, we reached the tracks of the party who had passed on , and, following them over plains of spinifex and stunted gums, found them encamped with plenty of water, which they had luckily discovered at sundown.

Distance travelled eighteen miles about true east. By meridian altitude of Bootes Arcturus , this bivouac is in south latitude 28 degrees 53 minutes 34 seconds, and longitude about degrees 9 minutes east.