Kure Atoll

Kure Atoll, otherwise known as the Ocean Island refers to an atoll found in Pacific Ocean just a few km beyond the Midway Atoll found in Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Green Island is the only piece of land in the atoll of a significant size and it is a habitat for thousands of seabirds. The island also has a short, unmaintained and unused runway as well as a coast guard station that has since been abandoned. Kure Atoll is well reputed for being the coral atoll located in the northern most part of the world. The atoll majorly comprises of a 10 km circular barrier reef surrounded by several sand islets and a shallow lagoon. The Green Island is found on the atoll’s southeast side.
Green Island beaches are highly frequented by various Hawaiian monk seals that keep hauling on the beaches and are a great attraction. Kure Atoll has a rich geological history and attracts a significant number of geologists, archeologists and scientists. Ideally, its geological history is more or less similar to that of Midway even though the atoll closely lies to the Darwin Point. The growth of reef at the atoll has been found to be equal to the destruction of the same reef by a number of physical forces. Kure Atoll has experienced a lot of human use and exploration and like other northwestern islands; Hawaiian mythology associates the atoll with Kane Milohai.
The island has been neglected to some extent and the U.S Navy patrols used to visit the atoll routinely during the era of World War II. This aimed at ensuring the Japanese army didn’t use it for flying boats from the submarine tankers or refueling submarines. This contributed greatly in preventing attacks along the Hawaiian chain. As such, the atoll was of great significance during the world war era and one aircraft bomber even crash landed just near Kure Atoll after the US fighters damaged it. Being located within one of the major currents in the Pacific Ocean, most of the debris are washed up from Great Pacific Garbage Patch like cigarette lighters and fishing nets and can be found on deposited along the shores.
Washing of debris to Kure Atoll poses a great threat to local animals, particularly birds and their skeletons are found frequently with their stomach cavity having plastics. Due to the remoteness of Kure Atoll, the location is one of the scenes where a number of expeditions on amateur radio DX have been initiated. The path of radio propagation between Europe and Kure runs over North Polar Region and thus Kure offers great opportunities for effective distant communication and this makes it pretty popular among the European amateurs. While there are no major tourist attractions available in Kure Atoll, the place is worthy a visit especially if science and geology are something you are interested in. The place offers a great destination for learning about bird life in the area and it is thus a perfect destination for scientific researchers.
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