The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 7, 1997 · Page 139
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December 7, 1997

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 139

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West Palm Beach, Florida
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Sunday, December 7, 1997
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Page 139
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THE PALM BEACH POST SUNDAY, DECEMBER 7, 1997 71 The Ghost Fleet Of Chuuk Lagoon South Beach Cruises for 11 Hay from only $995 January-April 1998 Rnundtrip Ft. Lauderdale on the mv Melody 2 ITINERARIES TO CHOOSE FROM! Call !-800-650-SAIL: Restrxrfions appry Ships' Rg Panama FL Stwol Tv I Lull 1 A porthole, dish-ware, a gas mask and other signs of war and life aboard ship still lie scattered around the decks of the 500-foot tanker Shin Koku Maru sunk in Chuuk Lagoon in 1944. The artifacts add to the eerie ambience of this WWII underwater graveyard. Photos by PAUL MILLER OWindnn An Island Beach Resort Think About A January "Get Away" Think About Beautiful Sunsets Think About Relaxing on the Beach Think About $130.00 Per Night Think About The West Wind Inn Think About Calling 800-282-2831 The Perfect Island Getaway Think About It . . The West Wind Inn on Beautiful Tropical Sanibel Island. Kitchenette Rooms at $145 Children 14 and under stay FREE. Driftwood Bldg. add'l $10.00. Rate single or double occupancy. Local phone: 941-472-1541 e-mail: wwinn west windinn.com Not valid with other discounts, holiday periods, Florida tax not included. Warship 'graveyard' is among world's most popular dive sites Holland America Free 2 Category Upgrade on Selected Sailings to Caribbean Europe Hawaii New England Alaska Panama Canal South America Asia Monday, December 8th, 1997 only By Paul Miller Special to The Palm Beach Post CHUUK ISLANDS, Micronesia On Dec. 7, 1941, Japan bombed U.S. military bases at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. Two years and two months later in February 1944, Allied forces bombed a key Japanese naval base in the Chuuk islands (lormerly lruk Islands). Japan's fleet of warships, anchored in Chuuk Lagoon, was attacked by Task Force 58 a group of nine American aircraft carriers, cruisers, destroyers and subs. Over two days, American planes conducted continuous bombing, strafing and torpedo runs. More than 400 Japanese planes were wiped out and about 60 warships and freighters were sunk. Warships lie undisturbed The devastating air assault during Operation Hailstorm created what is today known as the Ghost Fleet of Chuuk Lagoon. Since those two days 53 years ago, the wrecks have remained undisturbed at the bottom of the lagoon. m) Holland America Line UK. A tin Mfi. nppnfi n Nassau ; ROBIN'S AT THE TURNPIKE Lake Worth, FL . TRAVSVICE 561 -968-4600 E-Mail: nshifmanconcentric.net WebSite: www.robinstravel.com Some of the shipwrecks have greater concentrations of soft corals, hard corals, sponges and marine life than the neighboring coral reefs. Although the shipwrecks are the main attraction, there are numerous war planes sitting at the bottom, most in comparatively shallow depths, and they also have abundant marine life and corals. The Betty Bomber, a Mitsubishi G4M1 attack bomber, is a twin engine plane that lies upright in just 50 feet of water on a sand bottom. The plane is 65 feet long with an 82-foot wingspan. The Emily Flying Boat is huge four-engine seaplane that lies upside down on the lagoon floor. The plane, 92 feet long with a 125-foot wingspan, was a Kawan ism iioiu naval reconnaissance seaplane. Remnants of the war are not al under water. We had lunch on the island of Dublon, and followed path that meandered through the lush tropical forest. Our destina tion was the bombed-out Japanese headquarters, which included ra dar and communications facilities The damage inflicted on those buildings by American bombers was complete in spite of the tre mendous amount of steel-rein forced concrete. Not just a WWII battle site Although renowned for its un i . aerwaier graveyard, cnuuk is much more than a historical battle site. It is a series of islands in an z-square mile emerald and aquamarine lagoon. I he people of Chuuk trace their ancestry to the island of Kosrae, and chants repeat the leg end of Chief Sowukachaw, who ventured to Chuuk in the 14th century bringing breadfruit trees to the islands. JAPAN 500 Miles Wake Island, Bikini Atoll MARSHALL Guarti. I FEDERATED STATES of micronesia ph -.. ', "guinea V" ISLANDS Equator Pacific . , Ocean AUSTRALIA. FIJI STAFF GRAPHIC If you go Diving: Trip-n-Tour (2182 Foothill Drive, Vista, Calif. 92804) arranged my dive trip. Call (760) 724-0788 for more information. The guides were courteous and knowledgeable about the sites we visited. Weather The average temperature is around 80 degrees. The dry season usually runs from January to March and the wet season June to September. Diving is excellent all year. PAUL MILLER and ocean swells, this lagoon is a placid lake in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The number, variety and size of the wrecks and the spectacular marine life that grows on them are unequaled. Wrecks are beautiful reefs A combination of warm tropical water, prolific marine life and lagoon currents have served as a natural incubator, transforming the lifeless ship hulks into magnificent artificial reefs. TRADITION Of I X C I L I I N C I iMty ti ntocM siMmi ari ikcMm cftiMrv "I" Ml n mum nm n hmmf i, ihv vnn mm Mpttn. Sauare Shoonina Center has a 1 JtlA I During a dive trip here, I wit-! hessed the devastating damage to the ships horrifying testaments o those fateful days. Tanks, Jeeps, i sake bottles, china and gas masks J littered the decks, reminders of UOnly Enterprise cot nw l h ru m I 1 f (tAV H V MINIMUM RENTAL) weeKena rate mis low. 3. Chuuk was first known in the European world in 1565 when the aggressive Chuukese chased the bpanish Captain Alonso de Arellano out of the lagoon with hun dreds of swift canoes. After the Spanish-American War in 1899, the Germans took control of Chuuk until 1914 when the Japanese gained possession. Today, Chuuk 3.400 miles southwest of Hawaii and 590 miles southeast of Guam forms state in the independent nation of the federated Mates of Microne sia. SUPER SAVINGS UP AO OFF TO OU70 m 5 mhimnm mm hum mimm VX'iO Hnrrnhe Ita m '299 lady Luck 'joo iumr '419 Monte Carlo E 409 Treasure Island National Travel 1-800-444-3090 JANUARY SALE : o! CARNIVAL I Holland ameriSm DESTINY from only $699 ppdo incl port tax "WESTERDAM" from only $778 ppdo incl port taxes Limited Availability & Dates Apply $ Give A Girt of Travel for xmas ALLABOARD TRAVEL 547-0207 ALASKA VACATIONS '98 Cruises & Tours Call for your FREE 32 Page Brochure 1 -800-444-541 4 BERMUDA April 1 0 & 1 7, 1998 Horizon 7 Nights From Koundtnp Ft. Lauderdale Free Bus MEXICAN RIVIERA ftC CENTRAL AMERICA . rrAwn PrinrMC C- 10 Night cruise Iram Sun Diego or tos Angeles $17S9 1 lo 4 Night Costa Rica Tours i Low Air Add-Ons ORIENTS CHINA c;ru!seT fk"Pint$-Fall, 1998 11 Nif,ht Cruise 2 to 5 Night Land Tour feofurny Beijing t More From Beijing to Hong Kong or reverse Low Air Add-Ons $2847 TRANSATLANTIC ss Norway Aprill 8, 1998 Miami to Paris From 3 Nights Paris Miami Air $469 Free Bus r.m.T.inw.wii.iMiinin.llJ.l:M'Ul Offices In: Florida (3) Alaska New York if! 'II "T 1 1 L1 1 i flM W WWBWif Dial one, easy-to-remember local number to enjoy a ' great weekend rate on a late model, air-conditioned car. There are over 80 convenient South Florida locations and rates are honored with an advance reservation. 'Applies to an economy-size car rented from Friday to 10 AM. Monday lor a 3 day total ot '41.97 including 1000 FREE miles, faxes, excess miles .20 per mile and , optional damage waiver ' 15.99 or less per day are extra. Availability is limited and restrictions apply. Call for details. Valid at South Florida locations only. rt HKKKNT) RAITS DO N0I APPI V AT MIAMI AIRPORT OR M0NR01 C0UNT 1 0CATI0NS Enterprise 1 sop rent-a-car I Pick Enterprise. We'll pick you up.8 time of year wken we Jecorate our Iotty, an J trim our prices in OrlanJo. the loss of life during the war. . These wrecks are so enor mous and numerous it would take years to dive and map them all. After diving for six days, I got only ;a glimpse of the Ghost Fleet. While most of the wrecks rest in 100 to 200 feet of water, many are so tall you can begin diving them at 30 feet. So there's something for divers of every experience level. ' Chuuk Lagoon is one of the world's best shipwreck diving destinations. Protected from the wind These dive boats moored on ' the island of ; Moen may not look comfort- able, but they of- fer effective OIIGUCI IIUIII II IC sun during the : 25-30 minute : trip to the dive : sites. At right, a t new 100-yard- long dock leads from the Truk I Stop hotel to the ; hotel dive boats. u , - . -I,., I i in. From November 23, 1997 through January 3, 1998, you can fill your - r- yrr? : - . . a i'iimii I stocking with all the joys of Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, including Camp " i ii ii I m iii liimMiMW I I I. nmw. r - - I III III' I'..rXv. III. 1,500 acres of lush tropical gardens. A private lake for sailing with a sandy beach for sun worshippers. A 12 acre swimming pool and watcrslide for the kids. 45 holes of Jack Nicklaus-designed golf for the grownups. An equestrian center for the riders in your family. For reservations, please contact your travel planner or call Hyatt at 1-800-233-1234 or 407-239-1234. , Kofi; r.v'irv vs''-w J l Hyatt, at an especially festive rate. RESORT Touch' are per room, per night 1 12397 through 1398. not applicable with other discounts, offers, promotional restrictions may apply. A HYATT Feel the 'Ask for $199 Holiday rate when reservation is made. Rates Based on space availability & availability is limited. Offer rates, award redemptions, or to convention groups. Other Hyatt t ..... ., 'ssr &L.LaL-...fe...ttJ ... . ts a. 1 1, ii4inifcMh i

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