Victoria River News.
The North Australian Territory Co.'s boat " Ark " returned from the Vic- toria River on Sunday last, after having completed the work of carrying the stores for Victoria Downs, Wave Hill, and Auvergne Station, to their destination at the head of the navi- gation of the Victoria and Baines
She brings news of the present being the best season on the Victoria River country generally, that has yet been experienced, there having been nice showers well through the month of May. This, in addition to the usual average rainfall, will be sufficient to keep the Victoria grasses green until
the October showers.
Stock are all looking well. The Victoria Downs Station has some 600 station bred bullocks ready for market, and these will be drafted for the butchers between now and Christmas. The Wave Hill owners are sending forward a further instalment of 200 head, and Mr. J. A. Macartney's Auvergne Station has 350 prime fats ready to take their turn. It is a pity that arrangements are not already completed so that drafts from these stations can be sent forward by rail from Pine Creek or Burrundie on their arrival there, as the poorness of the country on this latter part of the journey tells so severely on the travell- ing stock, that no fair estimate of the quality of Victoria bred beef can be arrived at by the inhabitants of Pal- merston, and the stations in conse- quence have to stand the brunt.
The carriage of goods from the head of the Navigation Depot., commonly known as Fisherton, has this year been conducted without interference on the part of the natives. Jasper Gorge through which the teams have to travel is always a spot to be dreaded by teamsters, as the cliffs are from 800 to 900 feet high right through the gorge, a distance of some 4 miles, and it is here more especially where the natives generally and wisely contemplate mak- ing a stand. There is only room for a single waggon to pass between the foot of these large cliffs and the Jasper Creek which runs through the gorge.
We understand that stores were landed from the " Ark '' within a few
hundred yards of Mr. Macartney's homestead, which is situated about 25 miles up the Baines, a tributary of the Victoria, junctioning with this latter river about 3 miles above Curiosity Peak. It was whilst waiting for the return of the North Australian terri- tory-- Co.'s teams, that Mr. Charles E. Gore decided to explore this Tributary, and to him is due the credit of having taken the first shipment of stores direct to Mr. Macartney's door, thus doing away with the expense of carting
The currents in the Victoria, which as a general rule run about 5 to 6 knots, have this season been exception- ally strong, probably brought about by the late rains, and rendering the navigation of the rivers exceedingly difficult. The "Ark" had to lay for 4 days at the mouth of the Baines before she could get across, the sand- banks that have formed in the last year's channels, but once inside there was little alteration in the rivers.
Parties of overlanders continue to travel past the stations en route for the Kimberley, but the residents being such a distance from the field, and so scattered over the country, are unable to give us much information about the