A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 822 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14.

After discovering and sounding this cove, I sent Lieutenant Clerke, who commanded the other boat, on board, with orders to remove the ship into this place, while I proceeded farther up the inlet.  I presently saw that the land we were under, which disjoined the two arms, as mentioned before, was an island, at the north end of which the two channels united.  After this I hastened on board, and found every thing in readiness to weigh, which was accordingly done, and all the boats sent ahead to tow the ship round the point.  But at that moment a light breeze came in from the sea too scant to fill our sails, so that we were obliged to drop the anchor again, for fear of falling upon the point, and to carry out a kedge to windward.  That being done, we hove up the anchor, warped up to, and weighed the kedge, and proceeding round the point under our stay-sails; there anchored with the best bower in twenty fathoms; and moored with the other bower, which lay to the north, in thirteen fathoms.  In this position we were shut in from the sea by the point above-mentioned, which was in one with the extremity of the inlet to the east.  Some islets, off the next point above us, covered us from the N.W., from which quarter the wind had the greatest fetch, and our distance from the shore was about one-third of a mile.

Thus situated we went to work, to clear a place to fill water, to cut wood, and to set up a tent for the reception of a guard, which was thought necessary, as we had already discovered that, barren as this country is, it was not without people, though we had not yet seen any.  Mr Wales also got his observatory and instruments on shore; but it was with the greatest difficulty he could find a place of sufficient stability, and clear of the mountains, which every where surrounded us, to set them up in; and at last he was obliged to content himself with the top of a rock not more than nine feet over.

Next day I sent Lieutenants Clerke and Pickersgill, accompanied by some of the other officers, to examine and draw a sketch of the channel on the other side of the island; and I went myself in another boat, accompanied by the botanists, to survey the northern parts of the sound.  In my way I landed on the point of a low isle covered with herbage, part of which had been lately burnt:  We likewise saw a hut, signs sufficient that people were in the neighbourhood.  After I had taken the necessary bearings, we proceeded round the east end of Burnt Island, and over to what we judged to be the main of Terra del Fuego, where we found a very fine harbour encompassed by steep rocks of vast height, down which ran many limpid streams of water; and at the foot of the rocks some tufts of trees, fit for little else but fuel.[1]

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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