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Astronomers Point, Dusky Bay, New Zealand



Resolution Plaque

The plaque is mounted on a post, and has an etching of the original drawing by William Hodges, artist on Cook’s second voyage, of Resolution moored at Astronomers Point, a depiction of Captain Cook is in the top right hand corner.   Below is the inscription (see below).

To commemorate Resolution’s visit in March/April 1773, Mr Ken Pickersgill made the trip from the UK in November 2003 to erect the plaque.   Apparently the plaque was the second one to be made, the first one was lost overboard.


After 122 days in Pacific and subantarctic waters, Captain James Cook moored his ship here on 27th
March 1773.
At nine o’clock we got under sail and went into Pickersgill harbour, one of those examined the
previous day, where the ship was moored head and stern in a small creek, and so near the shore, that
we could reach it by means of a stage of a few planks.  Nature had assisted us for this purpose with a
large tree, projecting in a horizontal position over the water, by which we placed the top on our
gunwale, connecting our planks with it.  This situation facilitated all our operations, and was
particularly adapted to our conveniency of wooding and watering, for our sloop’s yards were locked in
the branches of surrounding trees, and about half a musket shot astern we had a fine stream of fresh
We now began to clear away the woods from a neighbouring hill, in order to fix the astronomer’s
observatory upon it, and to establish our forge there, as our iron-works wanted repairs.  Near the
watering-place we pitched tents for the sail-makers, coopers, waterers, and wood-cutters.
George Forster, 27th March 1773.

GPS Coordinates:  -45.724633,  166.506521

Cook’s Log, page 43, vol. 28, no. 4 (2005)
Cook’s Log, page 42, vol. 39, no. 4 (2016)

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I am not a member of the society but over the course of my life, I am endeavouring to visit as many of Cook’s pacific anchorages as I possibly can.
This coming summer I would visit Astronomers Point in Pickersgill Harbour., Fiordland I am finding it difficult to plan transport.
I am writing in case there might be members with a similar wish and we could form a group and charter a boat.
I am an experienced yachtsman, at present resident in Melbourne.
Ian Cairns
By Ian Cairns on 9/1/2021 12:06:42 PM Like:0 DisLike:0

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