The other day I was reading a news article about Oman's plan to build a railroad to bypass the Strait of Hormuz. The Strait of Hormuz is likely the world's most important maritime chokepoint - some 17 million barrels per day (about 20 percent of the world's traded oil) flows through the gap between Oman and Iran. And that gap is really tight, in a marime sense. As the Energy Information Administration puts it, "at its narrowest point, the Strait is 21 miles wide, but the width of the shipping lane in either direction is only two miles, separated by a two-mile buffer zone. The Strait is deep and wide enough to handle the world's largest crude oil tankers, with about two-thirds of oil shipments carried by tankers in excess of 150,000 deadweight tons."

But how deep? I've found a handy depth chart for the Strait of Hormuz. So if you love maps like I do, go ahead and lose yourself in this for awhile.

Click through for a larger version from Wikipedia (I know, I try to avoid Wikipedia but this is a pretty sweet map!)