« السابقةمتابعة »
except when here and there, for a short space, some of the numerous wild elephant tracks with which the whole forest is intersected, took the direction we wished to travel. No teak throughout the march. Soil as yesterday firm, and mixed with small stones, but of considerable depth, as seen in the banks of the small streams, of which we crossed three or four in the course of the march. The path, but for the jungle, would have been good, and was dry throughout; our detention this morning enabled the traders and our people (who went in search of the guide, and who were unsuccessful) to overtake us before we started.
December 25th.-Meetakut, 7h., fourteen miles. The whole character of the march and country the same as yesterday, excepting that at 9h. 40m., an hour and a half after leaving the last ground, we found ourselves on the top of a small hill, from which we saw that we were surrounded by low hills, giving an undulating character to the country; and the latter part of the march has been a little less level than for the last two or three days ; a few of the teak trees of more consider. able size than any we have before seen ; crossed during the march five small runs of water, all tributary to the Zimee, and saw in the jungle, marks of all the larger inhabitants of the forest, bison, buffalo, cow, elephant, hog, elk, deer, &c., jungle and pea-fowl, all along the line of our march.
December 26th.-Meetakut river, lh. 40m., five miles. Were again detained by the straying of one of the elephants in the night, till 12h. 45m. Twenty minutes after starting entered the teak forest from which much of the timber in the Maulmain market has hitherto been supplied, and came on a wide and good road by which it has been dragged to the river, partly by main force by the elephants, and partly on trucks. The teak at first scattered wide apart in single trees, becomes a little more numerous as we approach the river; but they still form a very small part of the forest ; the timber larger and finer than we have hitherto seen. At lh. 40m. reach the river, running in a deep bed in rich soil ; though there is a considerable depth of water in many parts of the river, the bottom is so uneven as to prevent the timber being floated down, except in the rains. From this we march in an easterly direction, come again on the river at 3h. 10m. when we cross and halt on its banks, being a considerable distance from any other water. We have been fortunate in obtaining a basket and a half of rice from some wood cutters, at three rupees a basket. The Kareens who still accompany us know the road for the next two days; we shall then for one day have, as in the last few days, to take the best direction we can, when several of the people know the road to Kataintsein, the Siamese post on the frontier, at least they have travelled in this direction some years ago.
December 27th.-Kyeun-Kyaung-let-tet, 4h. 20m., eight miles. Left the last ground at 7h. 45m. and march generally in the di. rection stated, though the route has been very tortuous, over broken ground through a forest of tall trees, with an underwood of bamboos so broken down and interlaced by the wild elephants, that our progress was exceedingly slow, excepting for about a mile, when our march happened to lay along a wild elephant tract. There has been no signs of any path throughout the day, and the elephants did not come up till past 7 P. M. Saw only a few teak trees just before coming to our ground, which were nearly all killed for felling, though we saw no stream that appeared adapted for floating them to the river. The soil appears good, though broken by many wild ravines, and water by no means scarce, but no sign of this part of the jungle ever having afford. ed subsistence to a human being. Marks of the same variety of wild beasts as yesterday.
December 28th.--Near the Zimee, a little above Kyeun-Kyaung, 3h. 10m. A. M. nine miles. Start at 8, along a small path, the same as yesterday; at 8h. 25m. cross the Maz-Pra, or Ko-tor Kuag, a branch of Meetakut, about which there is a good deal of fine teak, and the path begins to be well marked; at 8h. 50m. cross a small stream and an old Kareen clearing; 9h. 40m. cross another small stream; at 9h.50m. come on the road by which timber had been dragged in the monsoon to the Kyeun-Kyaung, which we reach at 10h. 10m.; passing down in the direction of the stream, come on it again at lh. 20m., where it joins the Zimee ; passing up that river, ten minutes halt at a wood cutter’s hut. The Zimee is even at this season of considerable width, and has at this place and season five or six feet of water. We obtain another basket of rice, price three rupees, and gain information about the road between this and Jung-Jung-Khay; a great deal of very fine timber still in this forest close to the river.
December 29th.-Small stream, 6h. 50m., two miles. 9 A. M. left last halting place, where there are the stumps of a teak stockade still to be seen which was erected 1147, (A. D. 1812) by Along Mindora, the grandfather of the present king of Ava, on his expedition against Bankok, but taking a road too much to the eastward got into ravines, quite impassable for people with loads ; from their steepness and the thickness of the jungle, we were obliged to return to the ground we had left, and at half past 12 took a fresh departure, and marching along at a short distance from the banks of the Zimee,
halted here at 2h. 40m. The teak here appears to be confined to the valley of the river, as not a tree was to be seen after entering the hills; the road we attempted to find in the morning would have taken us to Jung-Jung-Khay in one day, whilst by the one we are now pursuing, we shall be three or four in reaching the same place. We procured two guides at the last halting place, who had come up to float down timber, but finding the elephants and people they expected to have met here, had returned to Maulmain, their engagement with Mr. Darwood being cancelled, they also were about to return. Their occupations keeping them about the banks of the river, they are acquainted with our present route, and supposed from description they could have found the eastern road, but unfortunately were mistaken, and being very short of provisions, we could not lose time in looking for it. Our party have feasted on elephant's flesh the last two days; the people at the halting place having shot a female the day before our arrival, the flesh of which they were smoking for the Maulmain market.
December 30th.-Maitsalic Kyeung lh. 30m., three miles. Have made wretched progress the last two days; did not get the elephants, one of which had followed a herd of wild ones, till past one o'clock. We started at lh. 20m., and after marching ten minutes, had to halt twenty, till the guides went to look for the path, amongst many others, nearly all equally trodden by the wild inhabitants of the forest. At lh. 50m. proceeded for another ten minutes, and had again to halt an hour for the same purpose, when we a third time moved forward, and at 3h. 5m. reached the Zimee, running a clear stream in a stony bed, with banks in a direction N. 20° W., waist-deep at the ford, and some 150 yards wide; crossed it N. 55o W., and marching along its western bank through the teak forest (of Mr. Bentley) reach this ground on the Maitsalic river, knee-deep, running N. 6° E. to join the Zimee. Here we were obliged to halt for the elephants, as it is impossible to distinguish the path even with help of the full moon ; we have only one more day's rice, and shall certainly not get a supply for the next two days.
December 31st.--Small stream, 4h. 20m., eleven miles. Started at 7h. 35m. and crossing the Maitsalig twice, proceeded by a tolerable path through high tree jungle, and enter a narrow valley with a small stream, at 8h. 35m., which in twenty minutes becomes a ravine; along this ravine the hills more or less high, and more or less receding. Our route lay till 10h. 22m., when we recross the Zimee at Waattan-ghe (where it has a northerly course) in direction N. 60° E., the stream pretty rapid, and the water about three and a half feet deep; after crossing we waited for the elephants which we had left at 10h.5m. ; they did not overtake us till lh. 5m. No one of our party hav. ing ever marched between this and Jung-Jung-Khay, we had some difficulty in finding the path, which we could only distinguish, amongst the numbers of wild elephant tracks which cross the forest, by the few marks of the traveller's knife on trees at long and uncertain intervals. At 2h. 35m. we lost all trace of these and our path at the same time, which after unsuccessfully seeking for an hour and a half, were obliged to return to a small stream we had crossed at 2h. 5m., and at four halted for the night; some of the people just at dark, discovered the path on the east side of the stream. No teak timber since entering the ravine, on the other side of the Zimee, a good many thengan trees of great size, and other trees very high, with rather fewer bamboos. The wild elephants from their tracks, seem exceedingly numerous in this part of the forest, and the first of our people saw a herd to-day on the other side of the river.
January 1st, 1839.-Halt. The neighbourhood of the innumerable wild elephants has caused us an inconvenience I have feared for some days; one of our elephants joined them in the night, the mahouts having been in search of him all the morning, returned after noon, having lost all trace of him on a bare hill some miles distant. I im. mediately after furnishing them with a portion of our very small quantity of rice) despatched them again with other elephants, and to my great joy, they returned about 6 o'clock having reclaimed him. We have of course been constrained to halt here to day; I had however in the forenoon despatched the Siamese interpreter, some bearers, and some Birmans for a supply of rice, to meet us at the next halting place; they will I hope, finding we have not arrived there, come on to meet us, as there is not a grain of rice in camp for breakfast. I have tied up the elephants to night, and shall continue to do so till we are out of the vicinity of the wild ones ; this arrangement will enable us to start early in the morning, and give the elephants the whole afternoon to feed, they can then be tied up, and branches cut for them; though they suffer from this plan when long continued at this season, when there is little succulent food for them; we shall in a few days be where we can let them loose at night.
January 2nd.-Karaung-tan. 5h. 20m., fourteen miles. By tying up the elephants last night were enabled to start to-day at 7 A. M. The first part of the march was over a broken country, repeatedly crossing a stream about ancle-deep; the jungle at times a little more open. At 10h. 30m. were much disappointed at coming on the place where our party sent off for rice had slept last night, giving us little hopes of any thing to eat to-day. At llh. 10m, come on the Meeka-that, running
in a deep ravine, with a high rockyhill E.; travel up its bank, and at 12h. 10m. cross it just below the water-fall, or Jung-Jung-Khay, little more than knee-deep. The fall we saw was not more than three or.four feet, but a little higher up there is a fall of much greater height; the stream divides some way above where we crossed, and forming a small island, joins again a short way below; the branches are of nearly the same size, both of which we cross; we then pass up it to the west, and at a
short distance from it, at 12h. 20m., cross the Karong-tan, running | down to join the Meeka-that; and at 12h. 40m. halt on the east side of
the stream, about the same size as the Meeka-that. The people sent for rice have not returned, and the elephants and one-half of the rest of the people have not been able to come up, so that the party here tonight amounts in all to only sixteen or eighteen, and had it not been for a wind-fall of some yams in the jungle just before halting, we should have had nothing to eat; as it was, there were only some small knives to dig them with, and the depth the roots run in the earth is about three or four feet; my tent is also in the rear.
January 3rd.—Three Pagodahs, 4h. 10m., ten miles. Elephants and people did not come up till 8 o'clock, when having breakfasted on the roots mentioned yesterday, and fern-leaves, we left the ground at 10 o'clock, and marching along a good path, over ground a little undulating, with a high precipitous hill east, at 10h. 35m., the jungle composed of high trees and nearly free from underwood, halted at Enganoo, a small run of water at the foot of a descent from the road, a little after one, to dinner; as I was told there was no water at this halting place, and I wished to pass the night here, to enable me to get an observation of the distance between the moon and a star. Started again at 4 o'clock, march along a good path in high tree jungle, with occasional patches of bamboo underwood, till 5h. 10m., where some rocks protrude through the surface and the rocky hills at a short distance east of the path ; 5h. 20m. pass some water; and 5h. 40m., just as it was getting dark, lost our path, and with some difficulty by firing muskets which were answered by the mahout (the elephants not having halted as we did), in half an hour reached the three Pagodahs, over broken, rocky, wet ground; the sky became clouded, and we had a few drops of rain till 10 P. M., when the night became beautifully clear. The ground on which the three Pagodahs, so called, though they are only three heaps of loose stones, are situated, is of considerable height, being the centre of the range. The water on the opposite side runs in opposite directions, marking the old boundary between the Siamese and Birmans; the water on the eastern, or Siamese side, falling by the