The name “Dragon's Triangle” comes from a centuries-old Chinese legend of dragons living in palaces beneath the sea. The actual area encompasses a triangular line from western Japan north of Tokyo, to Guam to Taiwan. It, like the Bermuda Triangle, exhibits some magnetic anomalies, and vessels that pass through it have reported navigation and communication malfunctions. Reports of bright lights, volatile and sudden weather changes, unexplained sudden ocean swells, whirlpools, thick fogs, and storms coincide with disappearances of maritime vessels, aircraft, and tales of drifting, crewless ghost ships.
The Dragon's and Bermuda Triangles align point to point through the center of the Earth, with the same latitude and longitude. Both are located at the eastern end of large continental masses, where the sea's currents are colliding with warm and cold water, over volcanic areas. Deep trenches are another commonality, with the triangle in the Pacific Ocean featuring the Mariana Trench, the deepest known point in all the seas. The Dragon's Triangle in particular, reports an ever-changing seascape with professionally charted landmasses and islands literally forming and disappearing overnight.
Kublai Khan made two unsuccessful attempts to take over Japan in the 13th century, but both attempts failed on the trip through these waters and over 40,000 crewmen were lost in the first attempt alone. The Japanese people believed that Nature intervened to protect them and attributed the victories to the “Divine Wind”.
The famous Japanese Utsuro bune legend of 1803 describes a box shaped hollow boat, resembling a kou-hako (incense burner). Inside was a "foreign" woman described as having unique physical characteristics. There are many collected stories and books written describing this incident. The credibility of these books have been questioned, yet it has been verified that these books were written prior to 1844, long before the modern UFO era.
Modern linguist and author Charles Berlitz made his own mark on the topic in his 1989 book, The Dragon's Triangle. Of the many missing ships recorded — ranging from small fishing boats, large 200,000-ton (181,439-metric ton) tankers, American and Japanese warships and airplanes, and Soviet nuclear missile submarines — few revealed signs of wreckage, oil slicks or flotsam. Berlitz traces UFO and USO (unidentified submerged objects) activity in this area back to the 12th century.
The anomalies throughout history have inspired fascinating theories and lines of research. In 1950, Japanese authorities declared the area a “shipping danger zone.” In 1952, the government launched a research project to discover the true source the mysteries, but the research ship for this project, the Kaio Maru No. 5 disappeared to the same unexplained fate. The ship held 22 crewmen and nine scientists.
Many view natural environmental changes as the cause of the controversial anomalies. One of these explanations is the vast field of methane hydrates present on the bottom of the ocean in this area. Methane clathrates (methane hydrate ice) will “flash” into a gas when it rises above 64.4°F (18°C). The gas eruptions can interrupt buoyancy and can easily sink a ship, leaving no trace of debris. The gas will also explode if it comes within contact of an open flame. Other natural explanations involve agonic lines, volcanic activity and tectonic plate movement.
There has been much speculation on supernatural theories explaining the events in this region. Some have considered the region a gateway to another dimension, a parallel universe or a black hole. Atlantis technology has been suggested and of course, no conjecture would be complete without the possibility of alien involvement. Many submit the locations of the triangles cannot be coincidental, proposing these areas were at one time polar opposites.
Whether a person's preference is in scientific explanations of natural occurring events or of supernatural theories, the Dragon's Triangle is one of the world’s most intriguing mysteries. Perhaps, as science advances and the supernatural becomes more clearly understood, the day will come when the answers will unfold in the form of a combined explanation.