[footnote] See Journal, page 320. It was at this point that he threw away his horse-shoes and other heavy articles.
‘December’ 4.—The beef, shark, and a few cat-fish were jerked, and all the stores and loading spread out and re-distributed on the packs, and as this put the camp into some confusion, the Leader thought it well to shift it for a few miles, to let the packs shake into place before the final start. They therefore moved down three miles to the commencement of the mangroves, into a patch of the best feed they had seen since they left the Einasleih. At this point the banks were very soft and sandy, growing spinifex; the stream in numerous channels, altogether half-a-mile across, and the tide rose and fell about twenty-two inches. Here they camped, intending to make an early start on the following morning. Time was now an object of the utmost importance to the progress, if not to the safety of the party: Frank Jardine was aware that the Mitchell, which he had hoped long ere this to have left behind him, was still ahead, at least 40 miles away, without certainty of water until it was reached, whilst if caught by the floods he would probably be stopped by this important stream. It was with some anxiety therefore that he hastened preparations for the start. How his hopes were deferred and how fortune seemed to laugh at his endeavours to push forward on his course will now be narrated, and it will be seen how good bushmen with high hearts can overcome obstacles, and meet difficulties that would appal and baffle ordinary travellers.
Leave the Staaten—Half the horses away—Fresh troubles—Mule Lost—Sambo knocked up—Search for mule—Perplexity— “Lucifer” goes mad—Final attempt to recover him—Marine Plains —Search for Deceiver—Found dead—Salt Lagoon—Arbor Creek— Country improves—Good Camp—Eulah Creek—The Brothers attacked —Reach the Mitchell—Cow poisoned—Battle of the Mitchell—An ambush—Extent of flooded Country—Reach head of tide—Heavy rain—A “Blank run”—Leave the Mitchell—Good Coast Country— Balourgah Creek—Blue grass—Banksia—The Eugenia—Green Ant —Hearsey Creek—Holroyd—Creek Dunsmuir Creek—Thalia Creek —Black boy chased by natives—Another encounter—Cattle scattered by thunder-storm—Rainy Season—Macleod Creek— Kendall Creek.