Sunday 20 November 1836

[, on board the wrote. | Read source notes.]

20 November-Early part employed finishing our letters for England, at noon sent them on board the Africaine, and immediately after got under way for the creek. As we neared the creek, the most extraordinary refraction took place of any I had seen in this Gulf, and we had observed many remarkable ones. The Africaine and Cygnet at Holdfast Bay were now out of sight, we were standing on with very light airs from the S.W., and being about two miles from the mouth of the harbour, I observed something like a rock on the starboard quarter about half a mile from the beach, and apparently about two miles from ourselves; as I had not seen this before, I took the glass to examine it-it then appeared something like the hull of a ship in a haze, and in a few seconds, masts, yards, and rigging, were seen, and in a very few minutes after, the two ships at Holdfast Bay, full twelve miles from us, were distinctly made out, with the projecting land beyond them, and in less than ten minutes more nothing but sky and water was to be seen in that direction. At six p.m. we came to anchor in the first reach in the creek, and all hands were overjoyed at the little brig’s berth, in so snug a spot in this hitherto unknown anchorage.

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