"The news of Isandhlwana reached Colonel Wood on the 23rd while actually engaged in a skirmish to the north of Inhlobana Mountain.
He immediately fell back to a prepared position on the White Umvolosi, named Fort Tinta, and from thence to Kambula Hill, where a strong entrenched camp was formed. Buller was kept fairly busy. He writes on the 14th February :
I have lots to do and very little to write about. In the saddle for eighty hours a week does not leave one much time for writing, and sleeping, and that is about the amount of riding that I have to do now, for I have nearly 160 square miles of country to patrol with a very inadequate force.
However, the result of the work has as yet been satisfactory, for ours is the only column that is free to move when and where it likes, and we are not, thank Heaven, helpless and entrenched, but are masters of our situation. Everything is out of joint out here now, the General is down on
his luck and things are not going well ; however, we have plenty of time to get straight in, as it will be at least another month before any reinforcements can reach here, and I am sure that the General will not venture in again till they do come. It is very hard luck for me that just now when everybody is downhearted, and I should, I feel confident, gain more credit than I deserve for any tolerably bold stroke, that I am so terribly weak in men, owing to many of mine having taken their discharge, on the expiration of their period of service on the 30th of January. All told in camp here, Frontier Light Horse, Burghers, and all, I have scarcely 150 men, and deducting from that the number necessary to protect the camp I have not more than 100 at my disposal, a force too small to strike an effective blow with. However, I must be thankful for small mercies. I have
got a good deal of credit for burning a few old huts some thirty miles from here, called the Bagulusini Military Kraal. We had no casualties, and really it was not much : still, the General writes that he has specially reported me to the S. of S., and every little helps, for if I am to get anything
out of the Zulu War in the way of further promotion I must do a big thing, otherwise I have not a chance."
Source: "Life of General the Right Hon. Sir Redvers Buller"