Sec. iii.] SECOND EXPEDITION, 1906-08 15'
he gave useful help by large-scale surveys of the extensive area over "which its ruins are scattered, while renewed excavations rewarded by abundant results kept me busy for a fortnight. 24
After this we once again separated, Ram Singh returning southwards to the mountains, while I proceeded partly over unsurveyed desert eastwards to the
Surveys T ruined site of Endere, 2e where the easternmost limit of our surveys
Charchan,, Charkhlik. ~ y
of 1900-01 was reached. After the exploration of earlier remains discovered in the vicinity, I continued my journey north-eastwards to Charchan by the old caravan track along the line where a belt of sandy desert supporting scanty grazing meets the area of bare dunes covering the northern fringe of the great gravel glacis of the K'un-lun. 26 From Charchan I carried my plane-table traverse along the unsurveyed route near the right bank of the Charchan river or along the line of adjoining marshes as far as the grazing ground of Lashkar-satma ; thence I followed the usual caravan track by the old site of V ash-shahri to Charkhlik. 27
Here at the only permanently inhabited place of any size in the whole Lop region representing the terminal basin of the Tarim, I was obliged to make a
Survey along N. foot few days' halt for the manifold preparations necessary for my explor-
ations in the waterless desert north-eastwards. Before moving again I was rejoined by Ram Singh who had fixed his triangulation stations along the K'un-lun range from Surghak past Kara-sai and Kapa as far as Salkanji, south of Charchan. After a rapid visit to Charchan he had returned to the foot of the mountains in the south-east, but owing to the severe cold of the season and an attack of rheumatism was obliged to confine himself thereafter to plane-table work. Tbis, however, could as far as approximately the 87th degree of longitude be controlled by intersections from high peaks he had already triangulated from the west. Increasing pains had then forced him to regain the caravan track near Vash-shahri. Qe
On December 6th I started from Charkhlik for the expedition which was to take me
across the waterless Lop desert north-eastwards to the ruins of the
Start for Lop desert. ancient Lonlan site first located by Dr. Hedin in 1901; The route
chosen led past the small colony of Miran, then only spasmodically cultivated, and near it I was able to trace remains of an extensive ancient settlement. Rapid excavations soon proved its importance and determined my subsequent return to the site. RÀm Singh had followed me to Miran, but the rheumatic attacks from which he was suffering then and during most of the following winter months made effective work very difficult for him on the trying ground ahead. Nevertheless we brought him along on the only camel which could be spared as a mount, the remainder cf the twenty-one aniu,als being needed for the transport of indispensable baggage, food supplies and water, i. e. ice. With a party of fifty men including labourers for excavations, I crossed the Tarim at the small fishing hamlet of Abdal. Thence after leaving behind the last salt lagoons of the dying river I pushed on northward across a forbidding waterless waste of bare wind-eroded clay and drift-sand for seven marches from the Tarim to where the principal ruins of Lou-lan were found in the position correctly indicated by Dr. Hedin's map. 30
R4 Cf. Desert Cathay, i. pp. 269-299; Serindia,
i., Chapter vi; iii. Plans 7-18; Sheets Nos. 18. B. 4; 19. B. 1.
24 See Sheet No. 19. D. 1; Desert Cathay, i. pp. 300 sqq.
qs See Sheets Nos. 23. A.C. 1; 22, C. 4; Desert Cathay. i. pp. 317 sqq.
tl See Sheets Nos. 22. D. 3, 4; 26. A.D. 3; Desert Cathay, i. pp. 321 sqq.
sa For the surveyor's route from Snrghiik, partly followed alsd in 1913 by lt. B. Làl Singh, see Sheets Nos. 19. B.D. 3; 23. A. 3, B.2, C.D. 1, 2; 26. A-0 "4.
29 See Sheet No. 30. B. 2; Desert Cathay, i. pp. 348 sqq.
30 For the route followed from Abdal, sea Sheets Nos. 30. B, C. 1; 29. C. 4, D. 3,4 ; for observations on topographical features of interest such as the formation of wind-eroded clay ridges (yardaage), ancient dry river beds, etc., see Desert Cathay. L pp. 361 sqq.; Serindia, Chap. a, sec. ii, iii. For the topographical significance of rows of dead trees (wild poplars) marking aâcient river conies. et in particular Seri*. dia, i. pp. 855 sq.; for their indication on the maps,