Page:Narrative of a Voyage around the World - 1843.djvu/211

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

Amilpas range, I was surprised, when at a considerable distance from the land, to strike soundings in sixty-eight fathoms, which continued to decrease very regularly until ten that night, when we changed our course offshore in eleven and a half fathoms, without perceiving land, or hearing the "surf sound," which generally can be detected at night at seven, or even ten miles.

Light baffling airs prevented our making much progress, but the tedium was in some measure dissipated by splendid views of these volcanic ranges. At one view no less than twelve conspicuous volcanic cones were visible. As far as the sea horizon was available, we endeavoured to fix their positions, by anchoring daily before noon. Our draughtsmen attempted to delineate them, but no effort of the pencil could convey an adequate idea of such magnificence. Far as the eye could reach to the N.E., numerous cones of extinct volcanos were readily traced, as friends of yesterday; whilst to the westward we could barely trace through the tropical haze those with which to-morrow would bring us more intimately in connexion. Our observations were continued throughout the day three hourly. Although apparently overlooking us, the nearest cone was at least sixty miles distant.

Our progress was but tardy until the morning of the 2nd Feb. when we reached in and sighted the colours at Sonsonate, off which we observed two American schooners at anchor. Amongst the minor