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    Shaggy Ridge Madang Province Papua New Guinea (PNG)
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Australian Army 1943

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Phil Bradley 2003

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Phil Bradley 2003

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Phil Bradley 2003

Shaggy Ridge is a four mile knife-edged ridge line in in the Finisterre Mountains (Finisterre Range) in north eastern New Guinea. Located inland from Dumpu and Madang, situated between the Mene River and Faria River. At one end is the Kankiryo Saddle, linking the ridge to the Faria Ridge and Faria Valley. From the Ramu Valley, Shaggy Ridge is oriented north-northwest with the highest elevation at 4,900' / 1,497m at Lat 5°46.36'S Long 145°44.23'E.

During World War II, named "Shaggy Ridge" in honor of Captain Robert "Shaggy Bob" Clampett "A" Company commanding officer from the Australian Army, 2/27th Infantry Battalion. Saggy Ridge has three conical outcrops: The Pimple, Intermediate Snipers Pimple and Green Snipers Pimple.

Wartime History
By October 1943, during the Australian Army advance in the Ramu Valley, their next Allied objective was to capture Shaggy Ridge the advance towards Bogadjim and Madang. The advancing Australian Army 7th Division included the 21st Brigade and 25th Brigade, and were later replaced by the 15th Bridge (Militia) and 18th Brigade.

At Shaggy Ridge, the Japanese Army had established positions at Shaggy Ridge and Kankiryo Saddle to block the Allied advance. Defending was 78th Infantry Regiment, supported by the 26th Artillery Regiment and the 27 Independent Engineer Regiment, which formed part of a detachment under the command of Major General Masutaro Nakai. The Japanese were at roughly half strength.

A series of minor engagements followed in the foothills of the Finisterre Range before the Australians came up against strong resistance centered around the Kankiryo Saddle and Shaggy Ridge, which consisted of steep features with heavily defended rocky outcrops.

After a preliminary assault on a forward position dubbed The Pimple in late December 1943, the Australians renewed their assault in mid-January 1944 and over the course of a two week period captured Shaggy Ridge and the Kankiryo Saddle, after launching a brigade-sized attack in three prongs.

During December 1943 until the middle of January site of the Battle of Shaggy Ridge. In total, the Australians suffered 46 Killed In Action (KIA) and 147 Wounded In Action (WIA) Australians. Japanese casualties were approximately 500 killed. Afterwards, the Australians pursued the Japanese to the north coast of New Guinea and later captured Madang where they linkied up with U. S. Army and other Australian forces.

The Pimple (Sniper's Pimple)
The most important of the ridges was known as The Pimple and it was a rocky pinnacle sprouting perpendicularly from the main mountain spur. Strong posts and foxholes made it a formidable fortress within which two other conical outcrops, a few hundred yards away.

Australian Army - Shaggy Ridge
Shaggy Ridge 19-31 January 1944

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Last Updated
January 11, 2018


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