Kitzugawa Maru


The “Kitz,” a Japanese freighter, was damaged by allied planes off the southern coast of Guam in 1944 and came to Apra Harbor for repairs.  The ship was part of a convoy that included the Aratama Maru which ran aground in Talafofo Bay. The Aratama sunk and there is very little left of the wreck due to storm action.

The Kitz was sunk while at anchor by torpedo bombing attacks during the pre invasion campaign. Due to her engine room flooding and settling to the bottom quickly, she sits upright with the bow facing to the east. Alternate spelling of its name is Kitsogawa or Kitsagawa.  The ship had 5-6 sister ships and was constructed in 1939. All of these ships were cheaply made and had coal burning steam engines.  Some of this coal can still be found on the wreck.

The forward mast is collapsed on the starboard side.  A large bow gun complete with ammunition cases and ammo, a kingpost and upright stern mast and the upper superstructure make this a very interesting wreck to dive on.  The hatches are empty.  The stern section (after the last hold) is heavily bomb damaged and collpased. Some areas on the wreck are accessible to experienced wreck diver.

The shallowest part of the wreck is the stern mast, which is at 65 ft. Divers should plan for average depths between 100-120 ft to see most of the wreck.  Directly behind the bridge area the compartment bulkheads (walls) have erroded away and you can see a bathing area used by the crew. This wreck is a very good wreck for NITROX divers because of the average dive depth between 90-120 ft.

CAUTION: Because of the changing visibility conditions on the wreck, which can be reduced to as little as 10-15 ft, divers should be very familiar with the location of the ascent line to the boat.

WARNING: DO NOT enter any shipwreck without the proper training and equipment. Six divers have paid the ultimate price of their lives while diving inside wrecks here on Guam.   Do not breathe the air trapped inside the wreck. It can be very toxic!  The ship is showing significant signs of ageing and all divers should use extreme caution when penetrating into or under overhangs or passageways.

Depth Ranges: 65-135'   Exp Level: Experienced   Access by boat    Avg Vis: 20-60'   GPS: 13.27.29N, 144.39.11E