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Sector 10. Micronesia, Palau, and Guam

10.44

Sar Passage (7°11'N., 134°25'E.), which connects with the

foul area W of Eil Malk, is deep and intricate. It is seldom used. Tidal currents set W and E through the passage at velo- cities of 3.25 knots.

Urukthapel (7°16'N., 134°27'E.) is densely wooded, rugged, and irregular in shape. There are a few beaches, backed by steep ridges covered with dense growth.

10.44

10.45 Malakal (7°20'N., 134°28'E.) is situated near the

middle of the N side of Malakal Harbor, and is joined by a causeway at its NE end to the N end of Auluptagel Island and Koror Island. The island has been expanded by extensive filling around its perimeter. The main commercial facility lies on the E side of the island and is described in paragraph 10.50. A rusty steel structure stands on the summit of Malakal. A com- mercial radio tower and construction quarry are conspicuous on the NW side of the island. A 305m quay wal. with buildings belonging to a marine research center, are conspicuous on the SW side of the island. The depths alongside the quay were dredged to 7.3m, however, miscellaneous debris has reduced the minimum alongside depths of the quay at several locations. It is not used for commercial operations.

10.45

Arakabesan (7°21'N., 134°28'E.) is wooded at its NW end.

A hill, 110m high, stands on the S side of the island. The island consists of limestone rock. The E and SE shores are lined with mangroves and there is some flat swampy land on the N shore. Part of the W shore consists of sharp bluffs. On the N side of the E end of Arakabesan is a seaplane ramp which is in good condition. On the SW side of Arakabesan a concrete pier, 23m wide, extends 146m to the SW where it ties to a small rocky island. At the NE end of the pier a seaplane ramp extends un- derwater to the W, and at the SW end another seaplane ramp extends underwater to the SE. The concrete pier is in fair con- dition, and the ramps are in poor condition. The pier is in too shallow water to be used by vessels.

10.46 Koror (7°20'N., 134°30'E.) is the national capital of

Palau and the administrative center and port of entry for the Republic of Palau. The S part of the island is rugged, steep, and densely wooded. The W part is mostly level, about 30m high, and bordered with mangrove swamps in places. The main settlement is situated on the N and W sides of the island. The charted positions of various buildings and towers are reported (1981) to be inaccurate. A bridge crossing Toachgel Mid con- nects Koror with Babelthuap.

10.46

Babelthuap (7°28'N., 134°32'E.) is the largest island of the

Palau group. The coastal lowlands are covered with mangrove, while most of the hilly interior is covered with numerous for- ests, the largest of which covers the N central and E central parts of the island. Babelthuap has an extensive coastline of 98 miles, of which all but 20 miles is bounded by mangrove. Dense mangrove swamps, ranging from 1m to as much as 0.5 mile or more in width, bound low parts of the coast. Babel- thuap has several lines of hills, which attain a maximum eleva- tion of 242m, extending along the middle of the island. Some of the hills in the N part of the island are barren.

10.46

An unlighted airfield is situated 2.5 miles N of the SE end of

the island and 1.5 miles inland. A green water tank stands on a hill WSW of the W end of the runway.

285

10.47 Malakal Pass (7°16'N., 134°28'E.), which leads from

Koror Road N to Malakal Harbor, has a minimum width of 90m and depths of 7.3 to 18.3m. It has been swept to 6.7m and 7m, within the limits shown on the chart. The narrow channel leads between the SE side of Ngadarak Reef and the reefs fronting Urukthapel Island. The pass is marked by day beacons and can be navigated by medium-size ships under favorable conditions of light. The best time for entering the passage is during LWS. Caution is advised as the beacons may be washed away.

10.47

The lighthouse that stands on the SW side of the S entrance

of Malakal Pass was reported to be a useful daymark for ves- sels approaching Koror Road (7°16'N., 134°29'E.) from SE. A ship report (1977) stated that ships longer than 65.5m

10.47

should not attempt this passage due to the narrowness and bending of the reef-walled channel and the swiftness of the cross-channel currents. An earlier report stated that a strong N set was observed when entering the passage. The ideal time to effect entrance was after 1000.

10.47

In Malakal Pass, the N tidal current has a velocity of 2.5

knots and the S tidal current has a velocity of 2 knots; it is reported, however, that they sometimes attain a velocity of 4 to 5 knots. In the narrow part of the channel, the tidal currents set directly through, and outside attain considerable strength. The S tidal current has been observed to set at a velocity of over 3 knots for 5 days after a new moon, causing a strong tidal race for some distance off the entrance. Strong eddies have also been reported to form within the channel itself.

10.47

Northeastward of Channel Point, on the E side of Uruk-

thapel, the tidal currents set across the channel. At about HW, the tidal currents do not always set in the direction of the channel.

10.48 Toachel Mid (7°18'N., 134°32'E.) is the passage

leading between the reefs fringing the E side of Koror and those fronting the S side of Babelthuap. The passage connects Arangel Channel, at the S end, with Koror Harbor and Komebail Lagoon, at the N end. The passage has a least width of 90m. The passage is marked with beacons in addition to the beacons at the S entrance. The beacons are locally maintained and unreliable. The bridge connecting Koror to Babelthuap crosses the passage, with a vertical clearance at the center of the span of 39m at MLW.

10.48

Toagel Mlungui (7°32'N., 134°28'E.) is the main entrance of

Komebail Lagoon and then to Malakal Harbor. The passage, which is deep and narrow, trends about 2 miles in an E direc- tion. A connecting channel trends in a SSW direction and leads to Kobasang Harbor, Malakal Harbor, and Koror Harbor. Ships should attempt the passage only under favorable conditions of light and tide.

10.48

The two white entrance range beacons, best seen on the

chart, are reported to be small and difficult to identify. The channel is marked by beacons and buoys.

10.48

Aiwokako Passage (7°38'N., 134°33'E.) has a least depth of

10.1m and has been swept to 7.3 to 8.5m over a width of 348m. The passage leads into Ngardmau Bay.

10.48

Kawasak Passage (7°49'N., 134°36'E.) extends along the W

side of Babelthuap inside the barrier reef. The passage is tor- tuous and studded with dangers. It has been swept to a depth of

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