Page:Mongolia, the Tangut country, and the solitudes of northern Tibet vol 2 (1876).djvu/115

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THUNDERSTORMS. MOUNT SODI-SORUKSUM.

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of mosquitoes and flies, from which I had experienced such tortures during my wanderings in the forests of the Amur.[1] We could not spare time to hunt large game, which is scarce; and during the whole of our stay here I only shot two wild sheep, which, with two small yaks bought of the Tangutans, supplied us with provisions.

Rainy weather continuing incessantly for days together caused us great discomfort, obliging us to sit idle in our tent without even a sight of the mountains, which were thickly shrouded in mist. Now and then we marched into the midst of a thundercloud, and the lightning played all round us. The moisture inside our tent was also very troublesome; although our guns were wiped every day, half the Snider cartridges missed fire owing to the damp.[2] The weather only became clearer on the lower ground, and in the valley of the Tatung.

Here we really felt the heat, although the water in all the streams was too cold for bathing.

We passed several days on the southern border of the southern range, before crossing to the other side, where we encamped near Mount Sodi-Soruksum, considered to be the highest of these mountains. Taking advantage of some clear weather, I made the ascent, wishing to ascertain its height by boiling water. After climbing 3,000 feet above our camp, I

  1. Lieut.-Col. Prejcvalsky travelled in the Amur and Ussuri country between the years 1867-1869, and he has published an interesting narrative of his experiences in those regions.—M.
  2. It was so damp that we could not make the fire burn without using a hand-bellows, which are in general use among the inhabitants.