Chuuk Lagoon 2019
Staying and diving with Blue Lagoon Resort
Chuuk is one of the states of the Federation of Micronesia with Chuuk Lagoon itself being the major part of the state. The islands had been known as Truk as a German territory prior to World War I; it became under Japanese control after that war.
During World War II Japanese forces heavily fortified the lagoon and used it as a naval base. Intelligence warned them of an impending attack and many of their ships were withdrawn. On 17th February 1944 Operation Hailstone commenced with US carrier based aircraft attack which lasted 3 days. The result was that 12 small warships and 32 merchant ships were sunk and 275 aircraft destroyed ... mainly on the ground.
The attack played a key role in destroying Japanese supply lines and allowing the US to advance closer to the Japanese mainland with little naval resistance.
The Kensho Maru was a 116 metre, 4862 ton passenger cargo ship built in Kobe in 1938. The wreck now lies upright in 40 metres of water.
We dived the Kensho twice - our first and last dives.
Heian Maru is the largest wreck in the lagoon. It was 11615 tonnes and 163 metres long.
Built as an ocean liner in 1930 the Heian rang regular services between Yokohama and Seatle.
In August 1941 after returning from Seatle the Heian was converted to work as a submarine tender.
The Heian now lies on its port side in 33 metres,
The Hoki Maru was originally the Hauraki a cargo ship with accommodation for 12 passengers launched in 1921. It was owned by the Union Steamship Corporation of New Zealand. Whilst on a run from Fremantle to Colombo she was ambushed and taken over by Japanese Naval ships.
Returned to work as a transporter the renamed Hoki Maru carried coal, trucks and other machinery when sunk in Truk Lagoon. It lies in 49 m with the deck at about 30 m