The Journey to the Polar Sea, by John Franklin















































































































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On the 16th at three A.M. we continued our course, the river increasing
to the breadth of half a - Page 240
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On The 16th At Three A.M. We Continued Our Course, The River Increasing To The Breadth Of Half A

Mile with many rapids between the rocky islands. The banks were luxuriantly clothed with pines, poplars, and birch trees, of

The largest size, but the different shades of green were undistinguishable at a distance and the glow of autumnal colours was wanting to render the variety beautiful.

Having crossed two portages at the different extremities of the Island Lake we ran under sail through two extensive sheets of water called the Heron and Pelican Lakes, the former of which is fifteen miles in length and the latter five; but its extent to the southward has not been explored. An intricate channel with four small portages conducted us to the Woody Lake. Its borders were indeed walls of pines, hiding the face of steep and high rocks; and we wandered in search of a landing-place till ten P.M., when we were forced to take shelter from the impending storm on a small island where we wedged ourselves between the trees. But though we secured the canoes we incurred a personal evil of much greater magnitude in the torments inflicted by the mosquitoes, a plague which had grown upon us since our departure from Cumberland House and which infested us during the whole summer; we found no relief from their attacks by exposing ourselves to the utmost violence of the wind and rain. Our last resource was to plunge ourselves in the water, and from this uncomfortable situation we gladly escaped at daylight, and hoisted our sails.

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