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Record: oai:ARNO:505985

AuthorG.A.F. Molengraaff
Title26. Saba, St. Eustatius (Statia) and St. Martin
JournalLeidse Geologische Mededelingen
AbstractThe author has paid a short visit to the island of Saba in the month of April 1885. Saba is the northernmost of the curved row of neovolcanic islands, which stretches from Saba towards Grenada and the Grenadines. This row of islands together with a more or less parallel, though much less marked, outer curved row of non-volcanic islands separate the Caribbean Deep from the Atlantic Ocean.
The island Saba is the upper portion of a much denuded volcanic cone, which rises to a height of 850 m. above sea-level, from a depth of over 600 m. Saba lies at a distance of 4 km., from the northeastern rim of the Saba-bank. The latter forms a remarkable submarine plateau, about 2100 km² in extent. The Saba bank is very flat, and shallow, its depth being partly somewhat less than 20 m. and nowhere more than 50 m. The channel separating the bank from the island of Saba is 4 km. wide and its depth avarages from 600 to 650 m. The submarine slope of the island is steep in all directions, the isobath of 200 and of 500 m. lying at distances of no more than 1¼ and 3½ km. resp. out of the shoreline. The island covers about 16 km²; its slopes are steep in all directions, and it is surrounded at most places by inaccessible, often almost perpendicular escarpments, leaving little room for a narrow beach invariably covered with huge boulders. It stands to reason that the island is difficult of access. There is not one perfectly safe anchorage; the best anchorage is found on the westcoast in a place which is more or less sheltered from the prevailing easterly tradewinds. Rowing boats can attain the land there safely but, even in fair weather, it is rarely possible to reach the shore without getting a wetting from the breakers. From this landing-place a steep path leads to the principal settlement, called the Bottom, lying at an altitude of 215 m. This path is called „the Ladder” and hence the landing-place itself is generally known as the Ladder.
Document typearticle
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