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Sector 2. The Line Islands, the Cook Islands, the Samoa Islands, and the Tonga Islands

scrubby trees and coconut palms visible for a distance of 12 miles.

2.8

There are several indentations in the coast. The Bay of

Wrecks, the largest, is on the E coast and Vaskess Bay is lo- cated on the SW coast.

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Bridges Point Light is a good landmark, as are radio masts

situated 0.2 mile N and 4 miles NNE of it. A tank farm lies N of the light, while a large sled lies 7 miles E of the light. Kiritimati Atoll has been declared a nature reserve. Per-

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mission to land on the small islands S of London must be obtained from the warden.

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Winds—Weather.—The general tendency of the winds

from November to May is NE and from June to October, SE, with an occasional squall from the N or S. North, NW, and W winds occur occasionally between March and June.

Rainfall at Kiritimati Atoll varies greatly from year to year. The weather is generally excellent for navigation.

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Tides—Currents.—The spring range here is about 7m. Offshore, the majority of the sets reported are between the

NW and SW, with a large portion of the rates exceeding 1 knot. A rate of 2.5 knots has also been reported. E sets appear to be infrequent from June to November, but may occur at other times, particularly from March to May.

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A strong NW current along the atoll’s N coast forms tide rips

N of the atoll’s NW extremity. A very strong W current sets onto the island’s SE end.

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During passages between Kiritimati Atoll and Tabuaeran

Atoll, a vessel reported currents to be variable, but not exceed- ing 1 knot.

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Anchorage.—There is good anchorage, in 33m, coarse sand,

with Bridges Point Light structure bearing 110°, 0.5 mile distant. Anchorage can be found anywhere W or NW of Bridges Point; however, anchorage SW of the light should be avoided as abandoned moorings lie about 0.5 mile SW of it. Caution.—Fish Aggregating Devices (FADS) have been moored about 2.8 miles W and 3 miles NW of North West Point. The fringing reef in the vicinity of South West Point was

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reported to be extending W. 2.9 London (1°59'N., 157°28'W.) (World Port Index No.

56035) is situated on the N side of the lagoon entrance, 3.8 miles SSE of the NW extremity of the atoll. The atoll is administered as a commercial plantation by the Government of Kiribati, through a District Commissioner, who is normally in residence here.

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Tides—Currents.—The current sets strongly into and out

of the lagoon, and may reach velocities of 4 to 5 knots, but does not affect the use of the port facilities. From November to March, NW swells are frequent and at times cause lines of breakers across the lagoon entrance making passage by small boats hazardous and sometimes impossible. W swells and fresh E winds cause the most dangerous conditions. During flood tides with strong E winds, waves up to 1.2m high are produced. Depths—Limitations.—Vessels proceeding to London

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Wharf should use Cook Island Passage, which has a least charted depth of 5.8m.

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London Wharf, has depths of 1 to 2.5m alongside. The

approach channel has a limiting depth of 2.1m. A T-shaped jetty is situated 1.75 miles NNW of Port London. The jetty is

Pub. 126

220m in length, terminating in a fendered berthing face 80m in length, with dolphins at each end.

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Caution.—Caution is advised as depths less than charted

have been reported in Cook Island Passage and London Passage. A sand spit E of the wharf is constantly changing. The lagoon is shallow and studded with coral patches which

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makes navigation difficult even for boats. 2.10 Jarvis Island (0°23'S., 160°01'W.), an island of sand

and coral formation, is located about 202 miles SW of Kiri- timati Atoll. The island is 1.8 miles long in a E and W direction and about 1 mile wide; it rises to a height of 6.1m.

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A narrow fringing reef, which dries in places and has break-

ers along the S shore, encircles the island. There are two breaks in the reef on the W side. A shoal, with a least known depth of 4.6m, extends about 0.6 mile from the E side of the island. The depths drop rapidly outside the shoal area.

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Jarvis Island is a U.S. possession and a National Wildlife

Refuge. It is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wild- life Service.

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The higher ground surface lies on the W end of the island.

Although low lying shrubs cover on most part of the island, it was observed without appreciable size of vegetation.

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Caution.—Jarvis Island has been reported to lie 1 mile NE

(1991), 1.6 miles E (1992), and 1.3 miles ENE (1996) of its charted position.

2.11 Malden Island (4°03'S., 155°00'W.) is triangular- shaped, of coral formation, and located 375 miles SE of Jarvis Island. The island is a wildlife sanctuary under the control of the Government of Kiribati.

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The island is about 5 miles long and 4 miles wide at its E

end, with the apex to the W. It is about 9m high, and visible for about 15 miles.

Malden Island is steep-to, with reefs extending from all its extremities for distances of 0.2 to 0.3 mile.

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The settlement was situated on the N side of SW point and the ruins still remain.

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Tides—Currents.—Between Malden Island and Starbuck Is-

land, currents with rates of 1 knot are usual, but may reach 2 to 2.5 knots. Between September and November, the highest rates occur, sometimes exceeding 3 knots. The usual direction of the set is W, but E sets have been experienced rarely exceeding 1 knot. Anchorage.—Anchorage is available, in a depth of 28m, off

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the W side, about 0.2 mile WNW of a tripod beacon, which is close SE of the landing place.

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Caution.—Caution is advised as no implicit reliance can be

placed on current rates and direction. Great care should be taken when navigating in this area.

2.12 Starbuck Island (5°37'S., 155°54'W.), a coral island,

lies about 105 miles SSW of Malden Island. It is about 4.6m high and has a few shrubs on its NW part, making it visible from aloft at a distance of 11 miles.

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A fringing reef, a large part of it awash, surrounds the island;

it extends about 0.2 to 0.3 mile offshore, except off the E end, where it extends for 0.7 mile. A wreck is reported stranded near the NW extremity of the island.

The approach to Starbuck Island, especially from the E, should be made with great caution due to the currents in the

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