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Trial Bay


Zone 53
Map 5732
E 419500 - N 6356000
Trial Bay is located 25 miles south of Streaky Bay and it is the largest inlet between Sceale Bay and Corviscart Bay.


Historical documents indicate that the Trial Bay whaling station was operated only during the year 1845 (Hosking, 1973, p14-15). The owners of the station were Messrs Hagen and Hart. The following report is an extract from The South Australian Register, 23 July 1845, p2 col 4:

Trial Bay - "At Trial Bay, Mr Hagenís party had killed three fish, producing twenty-four tons of oil. At this station the provisions had fallen so short, that some of the whalers were subsisting on shellfish..."
Trial Bay is the resting place of two whaling vessels, Arachne and Elizabeth Rebecca.


Brick remains were located near what is believed to be the location of the whaling station at Trial Bay. Also included in the remains were pieces of ceramic, clay pipe stems and fragments of hoop iron.

Bricks from road cutting (photo M. Staniforth)

Clay pipe stems (photo M. Staniforth)

Pieces of Ceramic located at Trial Bay (photo by M. Staniforth)


Hosking, W.J. 1973, Whaling in South Australia 1837 - 1872, BA Honours Thesis, University of Adelaide, SA.

Kostoglou, P. and McCarthy, J. 1991, Whaling and Sealing Sites in South Australia, Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Special Publication No:6, p14-15.

South Australian Register, 23/7/1845

By Rebecca O'Reilly

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