Slow and tedious trip through miserable country, but geology prospers, and CD will have a good general idea of the structure of Chile by the time he leaves the country. Will send a last large cargo of specimens to Henslow.
My dear Catherine
I have very little to write about; but as there will not be another opportunity for some time to send a letter, I will give an account of myself since leaving Valparaiso. My journey up here was rather tedious; I was obliged to travel so very slowly, that my animals might remain in good condition for the rest of their journey.— The country is very miserable; so burnt up & dry, that the mountains are as bare as turn-pike roads, with the exception of the great Cacti, covered with spines.— I visited very many mines; & since I have been here, I have made an excursion up the valley to see some famous ones of Silver. I reached the foot of the Cordilleras.— The geology goes on very prosperously; before I leave Chili, I shall have a very good general idea of its structure.—
The day after tomorrow, I start for Copiapò, passing through Guasko: on the
But gracias a dios one month more & farewell for ever to Chili; in two months more farewell South America.— I have lately been reading about the South Sea— I begin to suspect, there will not be much to see; that is, after any one group with its inhabitants, has been visited.— Everyone however must feel some curiosity to behold Otaheitè.— I am lucky in having plenty of occupation for the Sea part, in writing up my journal & Geological memoranda.— I have already got two books of rough notes.—
The Beagle is now in the Port, refitting before our long voyage: Everybody is living on shore in tents. Everything has been taken out of her even to the ballast.— She proceeds in a week's time to Valparaiso for 9 months provisions. I hope some vessel of war will come round, before she sail<s>; if not, I shall not receive any other letter from you, for the next 9 months, that i<s> till we reach Sydney.— From Valparaiso I send a large cargo of specimens to Henslow; & these will be the last, for the rest I shall be able to carry, more especially as every month, my wardrobe becomes less & less bulky— By the time we reach England, I shall scarcely have a coat to my back.— And at present, as you may see, I have scarcely an idea in my head— So—
Farewell | Your affectionate Brother | Chas. Darwin