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via Moorcroftiana' Delphium vestitum. At Dooglee, the Potentilla atrosanguinea, “Bhooi-kaphul” commences, and is common towards the glacier, and near the latter only, occurs Aconitum heterophyllum ; “Utees;” both plants being-common-on Muhasoo at Simlah, at about 8500 feet. Are these anomalies of the retreat of the alpine plants and the advance of the temperate ones, in these vallies, to be explained by the fact of their thorough exposure to the sum, from their nearly exact north and south direction ? Amongst the rocks above Dooglee I found a shrub which the people called, from its bright red berries, “Dhoor-bank,”mountain arum : the Triosteum Himalayanum, I believe; and if so, the most north-west locality in which it has yet been found.
Either from the hardness of my bed and “dampers,” or the wild sublimity of the scenery, and perpetual war of the cascades, “deep calling unto deep, at the noise of the waterfalls,” finding sleep impossible, I passed a good portion of the night in conversation with Ramsingh and his companions, and amongst other things endeavoured to convince them, but without much even apparent effect, of the propriety of eating beef; not all their deference and adulation could make them admit its innocence' and yet they are well skilled in the most ready flattery. When we first met Ramsingh, we asked him whether he had ever been to Budreemath, and his reply was—“No why should I? you are my Budreenath.” Enquiring now a little into his history and the affairs of his village, it soon became too evident that even in these sequestered glens—where one might expect to discover an Arcadia—the very same bad passions are at work as in the nether world,—envy, hatred, malice, jealousy; in short the complete “Black Battalion” of human frailties and passions. If my informant spoke truth, Mulkoo, the Putwaree of Soopee, by the grossest oppression, had despoiled him of house, lands, and flocks; while, according to Mulkoo, Ramsingh, by engrossing the glacier as his peculiar property, robs him of his lawful quota of the rewards which accrue from the visiters. Truly of all “the fables of the ancients” that of the Golden age appears to be the most unnatural and incredible. “Croyez-vous, dit Candide, que les hommes se soient tonjours maturellement massacrés, comme ils font anjourd’hui; quils aient tonjours été menteurs, fourbes, perfides, ingrats, brigands, foibles, volages, láches, envieux, gourmands, ivrognes, avares, ambitieux, sanguinaires, calomniateurs, débauchés, famatiques, hypocrites, et sots'
Croyez-vous, dit Martin, que les éperviers aient tonjours mangé des pigeons quand ils em ont trouvé ! Oni, sans doute, dit Candide. Eh bien, dit Martin, si les éperviers out tomjours en le même caractere, pourquoi woulez-vous que les hommes aient changé le leur” My companions, however malicious, were intelligent enough, and listened eagerly to my details of railways, steam-vessels, electric telegraphs, &c. the last a difficult matter to explaim to them ; they were also very curious to know what the “Sahib-log” did with the sacks and boxes of stones which they carry down to the plains with them! They must surely contain gold, silver, precious jewels, or very probably the Philosopher's stone, in the reality of which they implicitly believe, may be amongst them! In the uses of plants they are more at home, but as to anything beyond tangible and present utility in the way of food or medicine, every man of them is another Jeremy Bentham. Ramsingh informed me that if the honey of the upper Himalaya be eaten fresh or unboiled, it produces continued intoxication, severe griping, &c. Can this be caused by the abundance of Rhododendrons, and the bees feeding on their flowers? The Ten Thousand in Pontus were apparently affected from this cause. September 25th.-Clear morning and the snows of Pindree in full view ahead, called two pukka kros, about four miles. Leaving Dooglee at 6 A. M. I reached the base of the glacier in two hours; the ascent very gradual, and for the most part over sloping lawns, bounded on the east by high crags, and covered with Geranium Wallichianum, Potentilla atrosanguinea and other species, Ligularia arnicoides, Morina longifolia, Primula glabra, Parochetus communis, Cyananthus, Saxifraga spinulosa, Polygonum Brunonis, and others, Sibbaldia procumbens, Ephedra Gerardiana, several species of Gentian and Pedicularis, &c. The only bushes beyond Dooglee are the Rhododendron campanulatum, Lonicera obovata, Willow, Birch, Rowan, all diminutive, and ceasing wholly about a mile short of the glacier, except the Juniper and the Cotoneaster microphylla, both of which flourish on its edges; the latter hardy little shrub seeming equally at home here as on the hottest banks at Almorah. The west bank of the Pindur is precipitous for about two miles above Dooglee, where a Gopha or cave is pointed out, said in days of yore to have been tenanted by the Pandoo, Bheemsing, not, however, till after the manner of St. George and St. Patrick, he had expelled and slain certain dragons and serpents, the original occupants. * Above this cave, the right bank also becomes undulating, and exhibits the trace of a road which formerly led to the glacier, till the bridge was carried away; the slopes there are covered with low thickets, probably of Rhododendron lepidotum, but the unfordable river forbade all examination. In the north-west IIimalaya, the passes, contrary to the fact here, are all gained by the north-west banks of the streams; here in general the eastern bank is most accessible. One circumstance remains constant, which is the comparatively level bed of the river below the glacier; from its source to the cave nearly, the Pindur flows along a wide channel, overspread with gravel and stones, the product doubtless of the glacier, which has no terminal moraine; its waters are exceedingly turbid, and though diminished above by the dozens of cascades, which of all sizes, and at all distances, rush down from the snow, are quite impassable. The spot called Pinduree is rather an open, undulating piece of ground, covered with grass, docks, and the ubiquitous Shepherd's Purse, in an amphitheatre of crags, with many snow-beds along their bases. Here I found the remnants of a hut, which supplied fuel, and at 10 A. M. started for the head of the glacier and the source of the Pindur (this last about 10 minutes' walk distant, but visited last,) which took me exactly three hours to accomplish. From the breakfasting ground the ascent is rather steep, over rough, and occasionally pasture land, covered with Sibbaldia, Salix Lindleyana, a low shrubby astragalus, the yellow aromatic Tanacetum, the dwarf white Helichrysum, an Iris 2 a garlic-like allium, and two most abundant and beautiful blue Gentians. The glacier lay to the west, and between us and it, rose a lofty moraine, along the hither or east base of which flows a considerable stream, the source of which is much more remote than that of the Pindur, which it joins one or two hundred yards below its exit from the ice. Having ascended perhaps a thousand feet, we struck off to the left, and crossing the moraine, which is here about 150 feet high, descended to the glacier, and with infinite
* During the heavy snow which fell in Kumaoon in February 1807, from 40 to 50 Kakur are reported to have taken refuge in a cave near Loba, when they were killed by the peasantry. Had the bad weather continued, and these deer been starved, we should probably have one illustration of the manner in which Bone Caverns have been stocked.
difficulty, advanced a few hundred paces towards its head, where it commences in huge broken tiers of the purest snow. The glare from this was intolerable, and the warmth of the sun now began to tell on the snow; the consequences soon made themselves heard and seen in the avalanches which, one in about every three minutes, commenced falling from the lofty crest on our right—the northern shoulder of Peak No. XV. generally known as Minda Kot or Nunda Hosh. The ridge of this was capped by a wall of snow, apparently 40 or 50 feet thick, from which stupendous masses were constantly detached and fell with the noise of thunder, spreading out in their descent like a fan, and tumbling in great blocks to the base of the moraine. Though perfectly safe where we stood to gaze, my Almorah servant was terribly frightened by “Devee's opera.” Having crossed the glacier we kept for a short distance along its western side, as I hoped to reach the source of the Pindur that way; and return to the camp by crossing it at its source: both objects Ramsingh assured me were now impracticable; and as heavy clouds began to collect to the south, any delay became dangerous; and therefore returning to the glacier, we endeavoured to steer down its centre, so as to look down on the river from the southern escarpment; but this was also impossible, from the tremendous fissures (the veritable Davy's locker) which crossed our path. Nothing remained but to regain the moraine, which we only did by passing along some very awkward isthmuses between these fissures. The moraine is constituted of gravel, mud, and blocks of stone imbedded in ice; the stones much smaller than I should have expected. It conducted us, latterly by a very steep descent, to where the river issues from a cave in the face of the glacier, about 20 feet high, by perhaps 90 wide; the impending roof is riven into four or five successive thick ribs of ice, the lower members of which promise a speedy fall. I found the water extremely cold and muddy, and, as my guide had declared, too deep and impetuous to be crossed. Mr. Hort found the water to boil at 1903°, which, allowing half a degree too high for the error of his thermometer, would make the elevation very nearly 12000 feet. It is most surprising that with such a beautiful and unquestionable example of a glacier within seven marches of Almorah, the existence of this phenomenon in the Himalaya should have been considered doubtful! Having within these five years visited the Mer de Glace and several of the glaciers of Switzerland, I can most confidently state that there is not in Europe a more genuine instance, and Mr. H. Strachey, after much more experience, in Gurhwal and Kumaoom, assures me that it is by no means a singular one. Captain A. Broome many years ago penetrated to the cave source of the Bhagiruthee, which he found to be formed of pure ice; so that little doubt can remain of the enormous “snow-bed” at the head of that river being also a true glacier. Captain Weller, who traversed the glacier near Milum (J. A. S. No. 134, for 1843) was struck by the fantastic castles, walls, &c. of its higher portion; this appearance would demote the junction of a lateral glacier;
but in no part of of his journal does he appear to be aware that at
Milum there was such a thing as a glacier ; at least he never employs the word. Certainly the recent heavy rains had thoroughly washed the Pinduree glacier, and its surface exhibited a sheet of the purest ice, except on and near the terminal escarpment, which being covered with rubble, resembles, at a short distance, a steep bank of mud; and such, I hear, is the appearance in May and June of the Milum glacier. But to make quite sure, I carried a hatchet, and frequently broke off fragments, which everywhere were perfect ice, the only difference perceptible, or that I can remember, between this and the Alpine ice, being a coarser granular structure here. It is intersected by the same fissures, has the same ribband texture, and from its origin in the snow to its termination above the cave, falls in a series of the most beautiful curves, which appeared to my unscientific, but unbiassed eye, a striking illustration of the truth of Professor Forbes' Piscous Theory. That the mass is moving downwards seems confirmed by the form of the snow at its head, viz. a succession of terraces, with steep walls, just such as clay, &c. assumes on its support being removed. The Bhotiahs of Milum affirm that their glacier has receded from the village two or three miles to its present site, and Ramsingh assured me that the same is true, in a less degree, at Pinduree. The glacier may be about two miles long, and from 300 to 400 yards broad, and probably occupies the interval between the levels 12000 and 13000 feet above the sea; owing its existence to the vast quantities of snow precipitated from Nunda Devee and the other lofty mountains above, which, melted by the noonday sun, is frozen at night. It must be observed too, that in spite of theory and observation elsewhere, the perpetual snow appears here to