9th October 1835

Galapagos (on James Island)
Taking with us a guide we proceeded into the interior & higher parts of the Island, where there was a small party employed in hunting the Tortoise. — Our walk was a long one. — At about six miles distance & an elevation of perhaps 2000 ft the country begins to show a green color. — Here there are a couple of hovels where the men reside. — Lower down, the land is like that of Chatham Isd, — very dry & the trees nearly leafless. I noticed however that those of the same species attained a much greater size here than in any other part. — The Vegetation here deserved the title of a Wood: the trees were however far from tall & their branches low & crooked.1 About 2 miles from the Hovels & probably at an additional 1000 ft elevation, the Springs are situated. They are very trifling ones, but the water good & deliciously cold. — They afford the only watering places as yet discovered in the interior. — During the greater part of each day clouds hang over the highest land: the vapor condensed by the trees drips down like rain. Hence we have a brightly green & damp Vegetation & muddy soil. — The contrast to the sight & sensation of the body is very doubtful after the glaring dry country beneath. — The case is exactly similar to that described in Charles Isd. — So great a change with so small a one of elevation cannot fail to be striking.

Captain Fitzroy’s Journal
This day the winds appear to be much lighter and more variable, to leeward of the archipelago, while the current is considerably stronger. We got pretty close to Chatham Island at dusk, worked to windward during the night, and on the following morning stood along the weather shore towards the watering place.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thank you for the info :)