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[Page 46]

Walker's Ridge – Pope's Hill – Quinn's Post

reserve. Fatigue parties were the general routine there, and we were occupied day and night in excavating tunnels, recesses for ammunition, and communication saps which were really wonderful, building saps which were six feet deep and five feet wide for mule transport, running for miles in length, and trenches seven feet deep and two feet six inches wide formed a regular labyrinth-like network.

This gully was wholly unsuitable for such a large body of men who as necessity demanded were camped together in a surprisingly small area.

Flies were numerous, and were a persistent enemy during the day time. They harboured round our food bringing with them filth and disease. They were a plague which gave us more worry and trouble than the lice which harboured amongst our clothing.

Our rations were always plentiful, but they were unsuitable and monotonous. The regularity with which we were served with bully beef made us hate the very taste, the very thought of it. Was it any wonder then that men were gradually being weakened by the dreadful disease of dysentery which by degrees was thinning our ranks, and no reinforcements of any numerical strength were forthcoming. We were always below strength, often called upon to do two men's work.

Was it any wonder that we were

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