Also in this section…?

John Gilbert diary entry

2 April 1845

Page 64. Volume 2

[in left margin]


6 miles North

Camp of the Murmuring Waters455

Lat 20=37=0

large river Charlie saw, and which receives the Suttor about five miles from our last Camp, and about North456. at the Junction we camped. Thus we have the last of the Suttor, which has conducted us through a great ex=tent of country, and on a very good course. it has been the best watered river we have yet traced down, and it has conducted us 183 miles a greater dis=tance than any water course has hitherto done, all our hopes however of its being a Northern or even a tributary to one are now blighted, as the new river where we are camped runs nearly N α S. and Charlie has been down about five miles, and from a Mountain which he pointed out we find it runs to the S α Eastward. but of all the rivers we have yet seen this exceeds them all in breadth457, at the Junction of the Suttor, it is very nearly half a mile in breath [sic], we camped in the middle of the bed - and looking up North, the whole expanse of the river was so clear, that at a distance there was almost an unbroken horizon, but the greatest novelty and important character connected with the Burdikin458 is, that it presents a running stream, not the whole extent of the bed certainly, but in the lower parts there is a regular stream running about 2 miles an hour of about 20 yards breadth. just where we are camped it rushes over a course459 stony gravel, and which produced to us a delightful sound, and which has sug=gested to the Dr the Poetical name of the Camp. the banks are well clothed in the large leaved Tea Tree, and Fig and other Coast Plants are in abundance, in different Parts of the sandy bed, are groves of Tea tree - which divides the river into many channels, in one of these groves I picked up two Gourds, as fallen from the tree, so that we may sooner or later expect to see this Plant growing, as we are to follow up stream. New fish were observed in the shallow running water, but we could not succeed in catching any460.

Note 455

The Camp of the Murmuring Waters, or 1st Camp at the Burdekin, which was near the junction of the Suttor and Burdekin Rivers, was estimated by McLaren to be at GR 022 207 on the 1: 100,000 Glendon map 8356. This position is now in the middle of the reservoir Lake Dalrymple. As McLaren said in his notes, Murphy had galloped the last two furlongs in order to be the first person to reach the new river. Murphy also waxed lyrical about their campsite, which was on the “magnificent banks covered with the new Melaleuca which hangs over the murmuring waters like so many weeping willows”. A mountain to the E.N.E. of the junction of the two rivers was named by Leichhardt after R. Graham, Esq, who had contributed to the expedition. On the Glendon map Mount Graham is now shown to form a promontory on the northern edge of Lake Dalrymple.

Note 456

This passage later underlined in blue pen from “large river Charlie saw” to “about North”.

Note 457

From “as the new river where we camped” to “exceeds them all in breadth” has later been underlined in blue pen.

Note 458

Gilbert’s underlining.

Note 459


Note 460

Possibly the Northern Saratoga Scleropages jardinii, not the Spotted Barramundi (or Southern Saratoga) Scleropages leichardi, which only occurs in the Fitzroy River catchment area. See footnotes for January 16th 1845.