Tuesday, 22/07/30.

Coote and Taylor leave early for Oodnadatta and take the opportunity to fly over part of Lake Eyre, a few minutes is enough of the dreary white expanse and they return to the rail line, three hours in the air and they land at Oodnadatta for a quick refuel, sandwich and smoke then the final leg to Alice Springs. They have a few anxious moments when the engine cuts out over town, with furious fiddling the thing restarts and safely set down on Araluen airfield, late afternoon. Greeted by Blakeley, Lasseter and Colson. Blakiston-Houston arrives shortly after.

First opportunity, Lasseter gets into Coote's ear and points out that Colson is not a shareholder in the company and his presence on the expedition is against the deal, shareholders only!  There will be difficulties if Colson comes. Exactly as Lasseter hoped, Coote berates Blakeley for including Colson on the expedition by citing the company rules and regulations and adds Lasseter might not be co-operative if Colson is around. Blakeley points out the pile of stores and equipment and does the 'Chairman of the Transport Committee' have a proposal for moving it? Coote is silent, Fred Colson and two vehicles plus fuel and keep will be hired help only on the expedition, there is no alternative. It's still not occurred to Blakeley or Coote to take twenty quid out of Colson's considerable wage and sign him on as a shareholder, that would take the steam out of Lasseter's gripe. The Captain sighs, he sees a busy day tomorrow gently but firmly reorganisng this incompetent rabble, the only shining lights are Taylor and Colson.

Terry and Williams have a better day, if jockeying mulga is 'better' than matting sand at least the ground is firmer, the dog, Larry , thinks it great sport snarling and yelping at the swishing mulga branches, he has a piecing yelp that earns rebuke and sat down the back! The men the Morris and the bloody 'dog' camp five miles east of Mount Connor, a good days work.

LASSETERIA