What a story behind this wreck. So, she got damaged pretty bad on Dec 4th 1943 at Kawajalein Atoll. She had to be towed back to Chuuk by the Momokawa Maru and managed to arrive 4 days before the Hailstone attack.
The engine was not working so there was not a lot of electricity which resulted in all the huge wind lamps that can be seen scattered all over the deck, diving her.
But let’s start in the beginning.
She rests upright just 4 min away from the SS Thorfinn and arriving on site we are all pretty excited. Jumping in we had a bit of murky water so visibility was only about 20 meters. Descending and starting to see the massive hulk of the ship emerging beneath us is still breathtaking even after some dives here in the Lagoon.
The bridge is still intact and coming in through a lower level door the first room we pass used to be a kitchen, the floor is still tiled and a huge Wok sits in the corner.
Cautiously moving on, another huge room is next with the portholes are still intact but some soft coral take advantage of the light and grow on the edge. It looks magical.
Around and through another door we arrive in the engine room. Given the size of the ship it is huge. Like entering a cathedral. All is in very good shape and diving down the gangways I can just imagine all the crew running up and down. The huge generator handles stick out and carefully touching them the smooth wood feels like they were handled just a few days ago. Some gauges are still intact but of course unreadable by now. It is just breathtaking. Diving deeper down the water gets a “white film or haze” possibly from all the oil dissolved in the water. It gives that part of the dive a little creepy atmosphere.
Coming back up the light greets us and we go and explore the bow of the ship. The huge bow gun is beautifully overgrown with coral and posing for pictures a curious eagle ray emerges from the blue and stays around for some minutes checking us out.
Another magical moment =).
Last but not least is the bridge, which holds an old radio equipment station and a beautiful telegraph. Everything is sugarcoated with coral and unfortunately our bottom time is up. There would be so much more to explore. So, I guess we just have to come back.