AUSTRALIAN ALPS EXPEDITION.
To the Editor of the Sydney Gazette,
I beg to inform you, for the information of our respected community, that the expe- dition, undertaken at my own private and very circumscribed means, has surpassed by its results, my most sanguine expecta- tions. After passing and investigating Goul- burn, Bridalbane, Gonderoo, and Limestone Plains, I passed the limits of the Colony at the Eastern side of the Tindery Mountain. Visiting many of the stations, scattered about the interesting and important down of Menero, I crossed the Snowy River, and brought my cart so far as Mutong, situated about the 37 ° S. L. and 148 E. L. As it was impossible to go farther—nobis ubi de fuit orbis—I converted my cart horse into a pack horse, and entered by Westall's Open- ing the very heart of the Australian Alps. The 4th of March, at 3 A. M., my thermo- meter ranged only 25°, and my water-pots were covered with ice an inch thick. The 6th of March, at 8 A. M., I was on the top of Mount William, the absolute altitude of
which is, according to the preliminary calcu- lations I was able to make at the time, from 5 to 7,000 feet, and therefore by far the highest point ever reached by any traveller on the Australian Continent. This alpine country exhibited to me very interesting ob- servations ; the vegetation, for instance, possessing many representants of the Eu- ropean Flora under similar localities. The genera of Gentiana, Arnica, Vaccinium, &c., were represented by analogous plants, which however are all undescribed. From
this elevated position I discovered towards SSW. a very extensive plain, called by the natives Omeo. According to the informa- tion I got of the only man of the Menero tribe, who had been once at this plain, it contains a lake, bigger than Lake George. It was therefore now my task to reach this interesting and important place. After my return from the mountains, I hired four men on horseback, and entered a second time the vast scenery of the Australian Alps. I ascended Mount Duram Birmungi, where, at almost the half of this journey, I was oblige to lead my horse and to go on foot. So I arrived for the fourth time at the banks of the Snowy River, where its breadth is about 200 yards. There I found a pass, formed by two high moun- tains, and was only one and a half day's journey distant from Stanley's Plains. But the shortness of my provisions, and the behaviour of the four men (who were un- luckily not my own), obliged me to go back. However, the discovery of Pass Britannia will, before long, become of a great importance to the Colony, this being the place where a road, connecting Twofold Bay with the Murrumbidgee and the other SW. parts of the Colony may be executed. The Snowy River must, according to its size at the place I saw it, become very soon navigable. The farthest point I made was
60 miles North from Bass's Straits.—Sisti- mus tandem.—I am now on my return to Sydney. My cart is entirely loaded with natural history objects, amongst which are several bottles of a mineral spring of an acidulous, alcaline nature, from Richard Bourke's Spring, on Menero.
DR. J. LHOTSKY.
F. R. Bot. S. of Bavaria, &c. Jirabombra, on Limestone Plains, 5th April, 1834.