1 pm: Fair Weather and Smooth Water. Discovered a Small Sandy Key & Shoal a head. At 25 Minutes past Noon, Anchored in 7½ fathoms Sandy Ground, and sent the Master and 2nd Lieutenant away to Sound between the Brothers and the Sandy Key.
4 pm: Bearings at Anchor. The Brothers S50°W to S65°W 4 Miles. The
Cap S2°E 5 Miles. Turtle Backed Island S23°E to S19°E 3 or 4 Leagues. Island Q
N34°W 6 Leagues. An high Island called R S39°W 10 Leagues, another S S¾W
8 or 10 Leagues. Dungyness or O Island S61°E 5 Leagues. A Sandy Key N64½°W to
N68°W 3 Miles. Saw Land from the Mast head supposed the Main of New Guinea NbW to NWbN about 6
The Boats returned with a report of a good passage from 7 to 10 fathoms between the Key and Brothers.
Down Top Gallant Yards. I ordered Lieut. Portlock when we got under way to lead between the Key and the Brothers.
Situation of this Anchoring Place
12 mid: Fine Night.
6 am: Breakfasted and prepared the Boats to go away and lead.
7 am: At 36′ past 7 We got under way with the Assistant and Boats leading. Up Top Gallant Yards. Saw a few Natives on the Brothers. It is a poor miserable Island covered with Rocks and Stones except its lee side.
8 am: At 35′ past 8 Saw a Bank in the WSW made the Signal.
9 am: At 9..55′ Saw low land WbN Ditto
10 am: At 10..55′ Saw Danger in the SW Breakers Ditto
11 am: At ll.. 5 Boats made the Signal to Anchor and of danger being in 3 fathoms. Came too immediately in 6¾ fathoms and called in the Boats, to get their Dinners to proceed to examine the Passage.
12 noon: At Noon fine Weather. Bearings at The Brothers S64°E to S71°E 9 Miles. The Cap S63°E 5 Leagues. Q Island N7°E 4 or 5 Leagues. Boats Shoal SWbW 2 2 Miles. An Island T N57°W an Island U S44°W. Some breakers were observed from aloft in the NNW about 5 or 6 Miles & a Shoal connected with what the Boats had met with SbE to West, part of it dry. Island R S18°W 10 or 11 Leagues.
Soon after Noon our progress westward was unhappily retarded by an alarm of Shoal Water and a Sandy Key which lay North of the Brothers. Uncertainty of our situation made me Anchor for the Night, and in the mean time I sent away two Boats to examine what dangers were in our way. There proved to be a good passage of 8 and 9 fathoms.
It was not untill near Sun Set that the haze was sufficiently off the Horizon to see the distant lands. To the Northward of Island Q it only extended two points by the Compass, but some of us thought they saw a great deal more, if so it may the the Main of New Guinea. The Island R was a very high Island with rather a Peaked Mountain. Q was high with an even surface rising to the Center, and S was also a lofty lump of land. My Situation by my map was at this time 9°..43′S and 142°..40′E by a Mean of my Time Keepers.
In the Morning. The Brig and Boats leading, I followed making a Course to the Northward of West between the Brothers and Sandy Key, and our Soundings shoaling to 6 fathoms we were again obliged to come to an Anchor by Signal fro the Boats, they being in 3 fathoms. We saw a range of Banks from the South to West, and we were not above 2 or 3 Miles from them. I immediately called the Boats on board and prepared them to set off with the Master and 3rd. Lieutenant, to examine what pass was to the Northward of this Shoal or Shoals, between it and an Island (that is rather low like the Woody Keys) called T. Part of these Shoals were dry at low Water. Thus we dared not proceed, for as I had gradualessenedsend the Soundings I had much to apprehend, and the approach of the shifting of the Monsoons kept my mind in a constant state of anxiety for the Plants.
We were like being in an open Sea except the few scattered Islands that were in sight. The one called R I considered near to the Northermost of those I saw in the Bounty's Launch. The Situation by my Map of this Anchoring Place 9°..41′ South 142°..28′ East.
Saw many flocks of Birds both land and Sea, among which were some yellow feathered with two pretty feathers in the Tail and a hook Bill like a Humming Bird. Many fine Curlieus, Turtle and Fish.
The Brothers is a miserable mass of Rocks and Stones with a few Trees on the low part of it. We saw a few inhabitants. Latitude 9°..47′ South Longitude 142°..37′E. The Cap and Turtle Backed Islands lie SE from it. They are of a tolerable height but all equally barren. I have no favorable opinion of the Channels between them. I suspect they are bad.