Thursday 8 September 1836

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

Weighed at daybreak and after a very pleasant sail came to at 1 p.m. just under the western side of Cape Jervis in a Bay affording good shelter except for North-West winds. The land from the ship had a very promising appearance and when we landed, which a party of us did after dinner we were highly satisfied by the superiority of it to Kangaroo Island. The Cape, as we have seen, consists of beautiful valleys and corresponding hills. The soil is very good and the grass growing in its natural state is abundant. The valley in which we landed is just inside Flinder’s North-West High Bluff and has a stream of delicious water running through it. The trees and plants here are various and numerous. Of the former, the Gum-tree grows to an immense size rivalling in splendour our English oak. The Gum, the Oak and the Wattle tree abound here also – the latter affords a very astringent bark which is much used in the Colonies in tanning and is twice as strong as oak bark. I found also the common bramble – a beautiful scarlet vetch [a leguminous plant], several kinds of lupin and heart’s ease. One of our party likewise found a primrose similar to those found in England. The land here not being thickly wooded may be cultivated with very little trouble and there are many spots that appear to me to be particularly eligible for a settling farmer as the pasture even in its present state would fatten stock of any description. We intend to run in nearer to the shore tomorrow and then land and pitch tents for Captain Light and his Surveying Party. My station is on board the ship but as we must remain here some days I shall take every opportunity of landing on this beautiful spot. We landed the native women we brought with us and they set off with their dogs in search of kangaroos. They were to have returned to the beach by sunset but as they did not make their appearance we put off without them and returned on board to sup on porpoise fry which is excellent – similar to pig’s fry – we harpooned a very fine one this morning and hope to make many good meals of it. We met Captain Martin of the “John Pirie” on shore – he had come over in a whale boat and came off with us to sleep on board. We are all in excellent spirits and prognosticate great things for the Colony, – Half past 9 p.m.

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