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December.

1764. clofe to fresh water. In many places we found plenty of wild celery, and a variety of plants, Monday 24. which probably would be of great benefit to feamen after a long voyage. In the evening, we walked back again, and found the ships at anchor in Sandy Point Bay, at the distance of about half a mile from the shore. The keen air of this place made our people fo voraciously hungry that they could have eaten three times their allowance; I was therefore very glad to find some of them employed in hauling the feine, and others on fhore with their guns: fixty very large mullets were just taken with the feine, as I came up; and the gunners had good fport, for the place abounded with geese, teale, snipes, and other birds, that were excellent food.

Tuefday 25.

On the 25th, Christmas day, we obferved by two altitudes, and found the latitude of Sandy Point to be 53°10'S. At eight in the morning, we weighed, and having failed five leagues from Sandy Point, in the direction of S. by E. E. we anchored again in thirty-two fathom, about a mile from the shore; the south point of the Fresh Water Bay then bearing N. N. W. diftant about four miles; and the southermoft land S. E. by S. As we failed along the fhore, at about two miles distance, we had no ground with fixty fathom; but at the distance of one mile, we had from twenty to thirty-two fathom. At the full and change of the moon, the tide flows off Fresh Water Bay at twelve o'clock; it runs but little, yet flows very much by the shore.

On

December.

On the 26th, at eight o'clock in the morning, 1764. we weighed, with the wind at E. N. E. and fteered S. S. E. for Port Famine. At noon, St. Anne's Wednes. a6. Point, which is the northermoft point of that port, bore S. by E. E. distant three leagues. Along this fhore, at the distance of two or three miles, we had very deep water; but within a mile had ground with twenty-five or thirty fathom. From St. Anne's Point a reef of rocks runs out S. E. by E. about two miles; and at the distance of two cables' length from this reef the water will fuddenly shoal from fixty-five to thirty-five and twenty fathom. The Point itself is very steep, so that there is no founding till it is approached very near, and great care must be taken in ftanding into Port Famine, especially if the fhip is as far fouthward as Sedger river; for the water will fhoal at once from thirty to twenty, fifteen, and twelve fathom; and at about two cables' length farther in, at more than a mile from the fhore, there is but nine feet water, when the tide is out. By hauling close round St. Anne's Point, foundings will foon be got; and as the water fhoals very fast, it is not fafe to go farther in, when there is no more than feven fathom; the Streight here is not more than four leagues wide.

The next day at noon, having had little wind, Thursd. 37. and calms, we anchored at Port Famine, close to the shore, and found our fituation very fafe and convenient: we had fhelter from all winds except the S. E. which feldom blows, and if à fhip fhould be driven afhore in the bottom of the bay, fhe could

December.

1764. could receive no damage, for it is all fine soft ground. We found drift wood here fufficient to Thurfd, 27. have furnished a thousand fail, fo that we had no need to take the trouble of cutting green. The water of Sedger river is excellent, but the boats cannot get in till about two hours flood, because at low water it is very fhallow for about three quarters of a mile. I went up it about four miles in my boat, and the fallen trees then rendered it impoffible to go farther: I found it, indeed, not only difficult but dangerous to get up thus far. The ftream is very rapid, and many ftumps of trees lie hidden under it; one of these made its way through the bottom of my boat, and in an instant fhe was full of water. We got on fhore as well as we could; and afterwards, with great difficulty, hauled her up upon the fide of the river: here we contrived to stop the hole in her bottom, fo as that we made a fhift to get her down to the river's mouth, where fhe was foon properly repaired by the carpenter. On each fide of this river there are the finest trees I ever faw, and I make no doubt but that they would fupply the British navy with the best mafts in the world. Some of them are of a great height, and more than eight feet in diameter, which is proportionably more than eight yards in circumference; fo that four men, joining hand in hand, could not compafs them among others, we found the pepper tree, or winter's bark, in great plenty. Among thefe woods, notwithstanding the coldness of the climate, there are innumerable parrots, and other

December,

birds of the most beautiful plumage. I fhot every 1764 day geese and ducks enough to ferve my own table and several others, and every body on board Thursd. 27. might have done the fame: we had indeed great plenty of fresh provifions of all kinds; for we caught as much fish every day as ferved the companies of both fhips. As I was much on fhore here, I tracked many wild beafts in the fand, but never faw one; we alfo found many huts or wigwams, but never met with an Indian. The country between this port and Cape Forward, which is diftant about four leagues, is extremely fine; the foil appears to be very good, and there are no lefs than three pretty large rivers, befides feveral brooks.

While we lay here, I went one day to Cape Forward, and when I fet qut I intended to have gone farther; but the weather became fo bad, with heavy rain, that we were glad to stop there, and make a great fire to dry our clothes, which were wet through. From the place where we ftopped, the Indians had been gone fo lately, that the wood, which lay half burnt, where they had made their fire, was still warm; and foon after our fire was kindled, we perceived that another was kindled directly oppofite to it, on the Terra del Fuego fhore; probably as a fignal, which, if we had been Indians, we fhould have understood. After we were dried and refreshed at our fire, the rain having abated, I walked cross the Cape, to see how the Streight ran, which I found to be about W. N. W. The hills, as far as I could fee, were

of

December.

1764. of an immenfe height, very craggy, and covered with fnow quite from the summit to the base. I Thurf. 27. made alfo ánother excurfion along the fhore to the northward, and found the country for many miles exceedingly pleasant; the ground being, in many places, covered with flowers, which were not inferior to those that are commonly found in our gardens, either in beauty or fragrance; and if it were not for the severity of the cold in winter, this country might, in my opinion, be made, by cultivation, one of the finest in the world. I had fet up a small tent at the bottom of this bay, close to a little rivulet, and just at the skirts of a wood, foon after the ship came to an anchor, where three men were employed in washing: they slept on shore ; but foon after funfet were awakened out of their first sleep by the roaring of fome wild beafts, which the darkness of the night, and the folitarinefs of their fituation in this pathless desert, rendered horrid beyond imagination: the tone was hollow and deep, fo that the beafts, of whatever kind, were certainly large, and the poor fellows perceived that they drew nearer and nearer, as the found every minute became more loud. From this time fleep was renounced for the night, a large fire was immediately kindled, and a conftant blaze kept up: this prevented the beafts from invading the tent; but they continued to prowl round it at a little distance, with inceffant howlings, till the day broke, and then, to the great comfort of the affrighted failors, they disappeared.

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