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Boy Scouts Beyond The Seas - page 86 / 129





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Boy Scouts Beyond The Seas

A Gallant Scout

Up behind Hobart rises Mount Wellington, near the top of which are some great crags and cliffs all of closely packed rock pillars; so the name “organ pipes” which has been given to them describes them very well.

With a mountain so close on one hand, and the wooded heights and creeks of the Derwent River and harbour on the other, there is a grand field for scouting, and the Hobart Scouts and Girl Guides make full use of it.

We had a good rally in the grounds of Government House, where the Governor of Tasmania, Sir Harry Barron, reviewed and addressed the Scouts.

I also had the pleasure of pinning the Silver Cross for gallantry on the breast of Scout Clarke for his splendid act in diving into the river with his clothes on to rescue a man who was seized with cramp while bathing. Although the man clutched him and dragged him under, Clarke stuck to him, ducking him till he could no longer grip him, and then bringing him safely ashore.

The Sort of Country You Get in Tasmania

From Hobart in the south of Tasmania, the railway takes one through the centre of the island to Launceston the northern port, a distance of 120 miles.

The first part of the journey lies along the Derwent River with its prosperous-looking farms, hopfields, and orchards very like those at home in Kent, but backed by thickly wooded ranges of high hills.

Although it was mid-winter the country looked green and sunny, and the weather was not very cold. We did not keep all the time in low ground, for the railway left the Derwent valley and climbed up among the hills to a height of 1200 feet above the sea. Here the farms were largely clearings among hills forest-clad with fine red-gum and hardwood trees.

Instead of cutting the trees down and then having to cart them away and root out their stumps, the favourite way here is merely to cut a ring round the stem, in the bark, and thereby to kill the tree so that it no longer overshadows the ground or draws the good out of it; it thus allows crops to grow.

Launceston Scouts’ Displays

Launceston is like a large English market town on the bank of the Tamar River. It had only a small rally of about a hundred Scouts. But they could do things several of them were good at throwing the lasso; they threw their lariats over other Scouts running about the ground, or caught them by the leg. I was told they are good at “roping” sheep in this way.

They also exhibited a number of model aeroplanes which they had made – and these showed very neat and clever handicraft. They also had a very well-equipped wireless telegraph troop.

The Tasmanian Devil

The Gorge at Launceston is one of the interesting sights of Tasmania. It is a narrow pass between cliffs and rocky hillsides through which flows a fine stream of water.

It is about two miles long and is kept as a public park and has beautiful views and wooded scenery.

Another sight in Launceston is the “Tasmanian Devil.” He is kept in the Zoological Gardens there.

I expected to see a very startling beast and was quite disappointed when I was shown what at first looked like a litter of small black pigs or dogs! These were the animals known as Tasmanian

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