The 1912 marine science cruises

Late in May, 1912, Aurora left Port Kembla, south of Sydney, where it had taken on a full load of coal. Its first landfall was to be Macquarie Island, but not before it had sailed Bass Strait (keeping close to Melbourne because of leaking that had developed in dry dock) and then searched waters southwest of Tasmania for the charted but unverified ‘Royal Company Islands’. No such islands were found.

Arriving at Macquarie Island on 7 June, the ship resupplied the five-man AAE party then headed for the Auckland Islands, where animal and plant specimens were collected, before making for Lyttelton, New Zealand, to have her troublesome leaks investigated. The source of the leak was found but no dry dock was available, so Davis took the ship to Melbourne, where the leak was repaired.

Aurora’s second cruise of the season out of Hobart took the ship again to Macquarie and Auckland Islands, returning to Hobart on 14 December to prepare for her second Antarctic voyage.