Great Britain. Hydrographic Office.

The China Sea directory: Comprising the coasts of China from Hong Kong to ... online

. (page 15 of 72)
Online LibraryGreat Britain. Hydrographic OfficeThe China Sea directory: Comprising the coasts of China from Hong Kong to ... → online text (page 15 of 72)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

endeaTour to bring Fapew in line with the hollow between two hills
bearing S.S.E. ^ E., easterly, which is said to lead in the best wat6r
across the Second Bar and between the Kok-heu banks on the east shore,
and the Bobinson, Janus, and Webster rocks on the other, in 3^ fathoms.f
When the ruined obelisk on the west bank bears East, keep over towards
that shore past the small walled city of Fong-chuen (about 28 miles
above Tak-hing), 2 miles above which the Eiai, a tributary, falls into the
-iver, at the entrance of which is an earthwork.

After passing close under the bamboo plantation to clear the Twin
rocks in mid stream, keep close round the point and under the High bank.

* See Admiralty chart of Si-kiang, Sheet iii.
t Cruizp of the TTAompoa, November 1862.


zed by Google

120 THE SI KIANa OR WEST RIVER. [chap, il

and when Watchful rock is passed keep the bamboo plantation open of
the High bank near it, which carried the Whampoa across in 3 fathoms
to the third Joss house below Wu-chu, which is a prominent object on
the north side of the river. A search then made discovered nothing at
the places marked '' doubtful " on the chart, the pretended existence of
which are due to the pilot of the Watchful^ who pointed out, possibly
with a view to magnify his office, every spot of chow-chow water as a
rock. In sounding also between the third Joss house and Wu-chu fu^
3 to 4 fathoms were found at 100 to 150 yards from the shore, in which
case the 4-feet patch on the chart which obstructed the channel in 1859
must have disappeared.

wv-crxv or vo-ohv, the frontier city of Kwang-si, is 75 miles above
Shao-king. It stands at the confluence of the Fu ho, the stream on which
is Kweiling, the provincial capital of Kwang-si, and this communication had
the appearance, observed from the heights, of being easily navigable by
gun boats. Its latitude by observation is 2Z^ 28' N. (22 miles north of
Canton), and its longitude, approximately, 112°14'E., which must at
present remain uncertain, as gloomy, overcast skies prevailed throughout
the cruize, and the distances were only determined by the means of the
runs up and down, as shown by Massey's patent log.* The breadth of
the river at Wu-chA is about 3 cables between the sandbanks, and nearly
a mile from shore to shore.

The Si kiang is moderately deep from Shao-king to Wu-chu, having
generally from 3 to 5 fathoms water in the channels for nearly 60 miles
above Shao-king ; in a gorge in Yuet-shing reach a depth of 29 fathoms
was obtained. The navigation becomes difficult as Wu-chu is approached*
For the last 4 miles it is most intricate, and barely 7 feet was found
]l>etween the rocky ledges. The Woodcock grounded twice on rocks, and
the Watchful on a bank of hard sand a few miles below the city. There
are numerous villages along the river banks, and a military stati9n at every
3 miles. The walled town of Fong-chuen, and the walled city of Tak-hing
stand on the left bank, the former 12 miles, the latter 55 miles, below

I and cussawT. — The level of the Si kiang at this season
(February) at Wu-chu, was from 2o to 30 feet below the river banks j
probably 25 feet below the summer level in July and August. The

'*' The 75 miles of river from Shao-king to Wu-chu were accomplished in 3^ days of
12 hours a day ; this gives an average of 21^ miles a day, or If miles an hour. The
average speed of the gun vessels (40 H.P.) being about 4 knots, 92 miles of running
were required to complete the 75, showing an adverse current of 17 knots. The return
passage was made in 20 hours, the log showing 61 miles, i.e, 45 miles per day, or
Sf miles per hour.

Digitized by VjOOQIC


velocity of the stream never exceeded 2 J or 3 knots. The river, however,
seems to have been from 2 to 4 feet deeper in its higher parts in November*
Tbere was a rise and fall of 18 inches at spring tides. The stream never
tamed, but was checked during the flood.

mnr-cKV to tsvcuizsv.* — ^About 3 miles abo^e Wu-chu is a long
and highly cultivated island dividing the river into two broad channels*
The island is severalf miles in length, and not far above its upper extremity
we got sight of the first rapids. Seen from a little distance there appears
to be a line of pyramidal rocks stretching across the river. On a nearer
view, however, these pyramids are seen to be pUes of large stones built
upon the rocks, and serve as beacons to mark the various channels, and to
point out the dangers in the way of navigation. The current is strong, but
by no means excessive in November, and there was a good depth of water
between the rocks. The distance from these to the second row of reefs is
about 2 miles, and then a succession of reefs and rapids for more than a
mile, the current being stronger and the channel more intricate than at
the first barrier. Ahead, the river contracted greatly in breadth, and the
passage seemed completely blocked up by a mountain barrier. Jagged
basaltic rocks jutted out of the water in every direction. On the right
bank rose a perpendiculai' clifi*, topped by a fine crag about 1,500 feet high;
on the left a fine range of mountains, culminating in a t£ree peaked summit
estimated at 2,500 feet. This was named mount Triceps. Several large
passenger and cargo boats were in company, showing that there are no
real obstructions to navigation even in this apparently intricate portion
of the river.

Clearing the Yung-tam-shan pass, the river, making a grand sweep to
the north-west, widens into a breadth of 1 ^ miles, with several islands in
the middle, and reefs in some places forming almost a dyke across the
stream. At this part the absence of inhabitants and of all traces of culti-
vation were very striking. The river now expanded into a sheet of water
resembling a large oval lake with wooded shores, below Yan-whoa. Above
this market town is Tenghien, 25 miles from Wu-chu, at the confluence of
the Pak-lo-wa from the south, on the right bank of which are two pagodas,
one of which has the appearance of a church steeple. This city was iu
ruins, but had been once populous and thriving, with broad and well paved

* Notes of an exclusion up the West river by the Rev. J. J. Irwin, November 1S61.
t Three miles by Da Halde's map.

Digitized by VjOOQIC




Vabiation m 1874.
Hong Kong, 0® 30' B. ; Amoy, 0° 2(K W.

TATHOVO OHAimL, the eastern entrance to Hong Kong harb<Hur,
is formed between the east side of Hong Kong island, and the conspicuonA
island of Tamtu. Tathong point, the east point oi entrance, jnts out frosa
the main hodj of Tamtu in the form of a somewhat low rockj peninsula.

Tatbonr Sook, above water and steep-to, lies in the fairwaj of thi|
channel, about 1^ miles W. by S, of Tathong point and 4 cables off'twi)
rocky islets on the Hong Kong shore 1 J miles northward of Tylong hea<l.
The rock is dangerous only at night, for the channel between it and
Tamtu being a mile broad, it can easily be avoided by closing the Tanitt

Bokhara Sook. — ^This rock is a dangerous sunken pinnacle at the
southern part of the entrance of the Tathong channel, with 18 feet on
it at low water springs, very steep-to, and having 10 feithoms all round.
From it Tathong rock bears N. by W. ^ W. nearly 13 cables^ and the
lighthouse on cape D'Aguilar S.W. ^ W. 7 cables.

Buoy. — A. black and white chequered buoy has been placed over the
Bokhara rock, but it should be given a berth of half a cable to allow for
its shifting about.

BZStscTZOirfl. — If entering Tathong channel from the eastward in
thick weather or at night, hug Tathong point, the low, dark headland of
Tamtu, and pass it at 2 to 3 cables, on an E.N.E. course, which will leiid
in well to the northward of Tathong rock. Preserve this course until thfe
west point of Tamtu is abeam, when haul up N.N.W. ; but if it be not
desirable to proceed into Hong Kong harbour, haul out of the fairway, and
anchor over towards either shore, as convenient, in 9 or 10 faithoms;
This part of the harbour is of very even depth, and the soundings, except
within the line of projecting points will not be found to decrease, so that
caution is necessary when approaching the shore.

. If bound from Hong Kong southward, or proceeding through the
Shing-shi-mun pass, after passing eastward of Tathong rock, do not bring
it northward of N.N.. W. ; or keep it well shut in with cape Collinson until
Tytam head shews open of cape D'Aguilhar. The same directions will
serve if entering Tathong channel from the southward.

Ancborage. — ^Vessels having run out from Hong Kong road through the
Lyemim pass, and wishing for* anchorage, either for the night or in conse-

Digitized by VjOOQIC


quenoe of bad weather, will find a good berth in the bay on the north side
of Tamta in 6 &thomB; but Hot too close in, for the water shoals to
2{ &thoins at 3 cables' lengths from the Joss honse on the north side of
the bay.*

TAMTU or Tunglang island, 820 feet above the sea and 3 miles in
circimi&renoe} i» separated from the mainland by a channel oaUed
Fotaomun paes^ which is only 1^ cables wide between the rocks which lie
off both points, with 3 fathoms water in the channel. S.£. ^ E. 4 cables
from the north point of Tatntn lies a sunken rock, from which the west
end of Steep island (the first small islet to the north-eastward) just shows
clear of Yih hluffi a remarkable headland, bearing NJ^.E. ^ E.

To the southward of the west point of Taoitu there ia a flat islet or rock
lying a cable's length from the shore, with reefs inside it. Upon the first
point outside Fotaumun pass stands a ruined fort.

snasp a&d TKio ZBMTB.^— Steep islet is Ij^ miles northward of the
eastern entrance of the Fotaumun pass, and 4 cables from the shore ; and
H miles farther north are the Trio islets. There is an indentation in the

coast, with 8 fathoms water between Trio and Steep, but it is exposed to

easterly winds and swell.

mvBFZxr osovp lies 3 miles eastward of the Fotaumun pass.. The
two largest islets are north and south of each other, with a channel
between 2 cables wide. The southern face of the South Ninepin is a
precipitous cliff, 330 feet high ; off its south-west side is a smaller isleti
and towards its northern point the land becomes lower, with a peaked rock
in the offing. The surface of the North Ninepin is nearly of the same
elevation, with the exception of a cleft near its northern end ; an islet
lies off its jso.uth-west extreme.

vinepln rock, or East Ninepin, 222 feet high, is nearly a mile eastward
of the North Ninepin, and assumes the appearance that its name indicates
only when seen in a N.W. or l?.E. direction ; otherwise the name is. liable
to mislead. Close to its north-west side is a smaller islet, and there are
detached rocks upon its north-east and west sides.

Oae-ft^ot rook, lying S. | W., not quite 7 cables from Ninepin rock, has
only a foot over it at low water. The marks for it are, the south end of
South Ninepin in line with the shoulder of the hill northward of the
highest part of Tamtu, W. ^ S. ; and the right extreme of the rock lying
on the north side of the North Ninepin in line with the summit of

* See Admiralty Charts : — Hong Kong, No. 1,466, scale m — 2'4 inches ; Sheet 2
East coast ^of China, No. 1,962, scale m = 0*24 of an inch ; and Mirs bay, No; 1^964,
•cale m s * 8 of an inch. Also, Sheets of Views, Nos. 108S and 2,558.

Digitized by VjOOQIC

124 HONG KONG TO AMOY. [ohap. in.

Shelter island in Shelter bay, N.W. The south end of South Ninepin on
with Fotaumun pass, W. J N., leads south of it.

Vorcn f efc, Ijing N.W. ^ N. 9 cables from fHnepin rock, is nearly
awash. There is a reef^ which breaks at low water, nearly a cable south-
east of it.

TiDas. — It is high watoE, full and change, at the Ninepin group -at
lOh. Cm., and the rise is 6 feet. In the channel between the group and
Steep islet, at full and change in May 1845, the flood ran S.E., and the
ebb S.W., the former 0*3 of a knot and the hitter half a knot.

yo&T flHWbTBm. — ^To the northward of the Ninepin group the main-
land forms a deep bay, containing port Shelter and Rocky harbour. The
western of the two, port Shelter, runs back 5^ miles to the northward,
and its head is separated from the south-west portion of Mirs bay by an
isthmus l^ miles wide, oyerlooked by the Hunchback hills, 2,315 feet
above the sea, which with Sharp peak, 1,540 feet high, on the west side
of the entrance to Mirs bay, form conspicuous marks by which this portion
of the coast may be recognised.

When steering for port Shelter, pass eastward of Trio and Table islets,
as rocks extend 3 cables from the point to the westward of them. Nearly
one mile northward of Table islet is the southern point of Jin island, with
a Peaked rock 2 cables southward of it; and E. | N. rather more than a
cable from Peaked rock, is a rock awash at high water.

Shelter island, one mile north-west of Table islet, should likewise be left
to the westward when steering for port Shelter^ as the ground is foul
between it and the main. There is good anchorage on the north-west
side of Shelter island, in 8 fathoms, but give the north point of the island
a berth of a cable ; and avoid the 9-feet patch, lying 6 cables to the north-
ward in the centre of the bay, and from which Table island is on with
the north end of North Ninepin, bearing S.E. } S. ; the opening between
Eeui and Jin islands nearly East ; and Shelter island S. by E. southerly.
One cable from the west point of Shelter island is a rock awash at low
water ; and a patch of 2| fathoms half a mile westward of it.

Sharp island, lying North IJ miles from Shelter island, has fair
anchorage on its eastern side, but exposed to southerly winds ; and from
which, passing north of Keui island, is a junk or boat passage leading into
Rocky hai'bour.

SOCXT BABBOVR is formed by Keui and Jin islands on the west, and
by High, Basalt, and Bluff islands to the east and south-east. Anchorage
will be found in the N.E. monsoon on its eastern side, in the neighbour-
hood of a small cove northward of Green islet, where there is a mandarin
station and a village. Inside the cove the depth is 6 fathoms, but the

Digitized by



space is confined, owing to sunken rocks. In the S.W. monsoon vesseli
wilJ be better sheltered by anchoring to the north-west of Day islet. The
soathem entrance of the harbour between Bluff and Jin islands is a mile
wide ; the rock awash at high water off the latter, has been mentioned
above. Day islet, lying 2 cables from the eastern shore o{ Jin, is low
and flat.

Three-itoet patob. — ^Midway between Day islet and the north end of
Bluff island is a rocky 3 feet patch, from which the west point of Bluff
island is on with the sununit of North Ninepin, S. ^ E., and the southern
summit of Day islet W.N.W. The North Ninepin and Bluff islands
touching, leads westward of it ; and the west end of the islet lying off
the south-west end of North Ninepin, in one with the west point of Bluff
island, leads eastward ; also, a vessel will be northward of it when
Pyramid rock opens clear of the north-east extreme of Bluff island,
S.E. by E. i E.

Tbree-fothoms patcb lies 6 cables northward of the 3-feet patch, with
the summit of Day islet W.S.W., Pyramid rock S.E. ^ S., and Green islet,
the small islet on the eastern shore, E. | N., 3 cables.

The channel between Basalt and Bluff islands is 4 cables wide, and has
5 fiithoms in it at low water. The former island is 8 cables long, north
and south, and 572 feet above the sea ; the southern faces of both islands
are very precipitous.

The channel between Town and Basalt islands is also 4 cables wide, but
it should not be used without a leading wind or in a handy vessel, as the
chow-chow water,* or whirling eddies, might lead them into difficulty.
It is also obstructed by islets and a rock awash at high water ; and to the
eastward of the 3-feet patch in Rocky harbour, the ground is foul with
some casts of 3 fathoms.

High island^ 7^ miles in circumference and 910 feet above the sea, is
separated from Town island by a channel of 3^ fathoms water, but in some
places it is barely a cable wide. At 1^ cables eastward of the latter is
Hole island, so called from its being perforated. To the northward of
these islands are two low islets. The channel between High island and
the main has not more than a foot in some places at low water.

mro BAT. — Conic isle, lying close to the shore, N.N.E. 2^ miles fix)m
Hole island, has immediately westward of it a small bay 3^ cables wide
and three-quarters of a mile deep, which might be used in the N.E.
monsoon. Fung bay, the next inlet to the northward, is 1| miles wide,

* Chow-chow water is a term applied to those ripplings or eddies occasioned by the
meeting of adverse currents, the tide passing over nneven rocky bottom, or romid the
duBp bend of a river, &c., which are firequently so violent as to render a vessel
uninaiuigeable when within their inflnence.

Digitized by VjOOQIC

126 HONG KONG TO AMOY. • [chap. m.

^nd has two islets and a rock in the middle of it ; but is too mucli exposed to
tbe eastward to be of any use. Sharp peak, noticed in page 1 24, overlooks
this bay, and bears from lifinepin rock, Nixrth, easterly, nearly 10 miles.

^umm BAT is a deep inlet 15 miles to the north-east of Hong Kong,
and its entrance, between Fung head on the west and Mirs point on the
east, is 5^ miles wide ; its extent northerly is 11 miles, and in an east and
WBst direction 18 miles.*

ikm^tMi, a n)cky islet 90 feet high, liea about 2 miles within the
entrance, and S*W. by W. about half a mile from it is a rocky ledge, part
of which is always uncovered.

sontb €kMi toiaad, 96 feet high, is 1^ miles S.W. by W. of this ledge,
and half a mile off shore.

The hills near Mirs point rise to the height of 1,200 feet, and just off
Its south extreme is Griffin rock. To the eastward of the islet are some
rocks, a cable from the shore ; the first point to the northward of them is

omASfl zfl&A«2>« — The point on the west side of entrance of Mirs
bay, IJ miles N. by W. of Fung head, has two islets off it, and thence the
coast of the bay trends suddenly to the westward, then northerly 1^ miles,
where an opening 3 cables wide leads into Long harbour ; the navigable
channel however has only 2 fathoms in it, and is barely a cable wide, with
shoal water extending from both shores.

On the north side of the opening lies Grass Island, 420 feet high ; and
3^ cables eastward of this island is North Gau, a large black rock, with
a reef, awash at high water, lying N.W. ^ N. 4 cables from it.

PO&T zfl&Airo, 420 feet high, is nearly 6 cables northward of Grass
island, and its north-east point, which is narrow, projects 3 cables from
the body of the island.

urater. — There is a convenient watering-place on the northern side of
this island.

&oiro BABBOmt. runs in 3]^ miles in a southerly direction from its
entrance, 6 cables wide, which is a mile S.S.W. of Port island. Both
shores are steep-to, with the- exception of the south-west end of Grass
island, where there is a cove with a rock off its north point ; to the
northward of this rock, and half a cable from the shore, is a rocky patch
of 3:^ fathoms ; some rocks also, which show at low tide, extend nearly a
cable from high water mark at the south-west end of the island. South-
ward of Grass island, the harbour widens to 1 J miles, and then gradually
decreases towards its head, where it is separated into two coves, half a mile
from the head of which the depth is 4 fathoms.

* See Admiralty plan of Mirs Bay, No. 1,964, scale m = O'S of an inch. "^

. 1

Digitized by Google \] MIBS BAT. 127

the next inlet westward of Long liarbour» is a mile deep
N«N.i/.. and S.3*W.y and 3 cables wide ; bat it, as well as Long harbonr^ 19
open to a considerable swell from the N.N.E.

On the western side of the cove are three islets, and 2 cables north-
ward, of Flat islet^ the largest, are two rocks awash at high water, frou^
which the smnmit of Port island bears N.E. | H, and the north end of
Grass island E. f N.

- :ca&o tBSAffvini. lead^ into Tolo harbour, is the next inlet west*
WArd of . Jon^s coye. Jts entrance, between Port ialand and Blnff head, id
nearly 1^ miles wide ; thence the channel trends S.W. hy W. 7. miles t^
White head, forming a Sound not less than 7 cables wide, with shores
steep-to, the depth varying from 6 to 14 fathoms on the north shore ;
2 miles within Bluff head, on the north shore, is a small cove.

Within the channel 3| miles from Bluff head is Knob reef, with a flat
reef 2 cables S.W. of it ; and 2 miles farther in lies Bush reef, north of
wHch, 3^ cables, is Harbour island. The main land to the southward is
nearly a mile dist^t from this latter ree^ but the ^-fathoms line extends
4 cables from its shore. Although there is a navigable channel on either
side of these reefs, the one northward is preferred, being the wider, and
having 7 to 10 fathoms water. Abreast Knob reef, on the northern shore,
is a large cove.

At White, head (which is a peninsula with the Hunchback hills, 2,815
jfeet high, with very precipitous &ce, rising immediately behind it,) the
Tolo channel separates into three arms, Tide cove to the south-west, Tolo
. harbour to the north-west, and Plover cove to the north-east. Tide cove
is Similes deep, and the water shoals gradually from 5 fathoms to its
bead, whence there is a footpath to Kowloon village, the distance across
from water to water being 2^ miles, and the greatest elevation to surmount
920 feet In the middle of the cove, 2 miles within White head, is a reef
which covers at high water, and from which a remarkable waterfall on the
western shore bears S.W. by W. ^ W. Tolo harbour is also 3J miles
deep, and has in its entrance Centre isle ; and on the north shore are some
islands, with anchorage between them and the main. Plover cove would
in all probability be found the most eligible place to ride out a typhoon ;
it runs back 2J miles to the eastward beyond Harbour island, and carries a
depth of 6 to 4 fathoms.

2| miles from Port island, is Round islet, the easternmost of an extensive
group lying in the north-west part of Mirs bay 5 the largest of the group
are Double, Crescent, and Crooked islands. Double island, the southern-
most, lies N.W. 6 cables from Bluff head, and the channel which separates
its south-west point from the main is only large enough for boats. The

Digitized by VjOOQIC

128 HONG KONG TO AMOY. [chap. m.

passage between it and Crescent is a cable wide, and has 4 to 7 fathoms
water ; between Crescent and Crooked, the narrowest part of the channel
is 2 cables wide, and the depths 10 and 12 fathoms.

On the north-west side of Crooked island is a large village, and on the
east end a remarkable peaked head, between which and the main land, to
the northward, the depths are 9 to 4 fathoms, mnddy bottom. On the
west side of the island is Crooked harbour, a good anchorage ; and to the
southward, formed by Crescent and Double islands. Double Haven, a secure
basin, the northern entrance into which is 3 cables wide : within it the
depth is 7 fathoms.

ysvo-csAV Z0&A«2>, 3 miles in circumference and 148 feet high, is
in the north-east comer of Mirs bay, N. ^ E. 4^ miles from Gau-tau.
The geological formation of this island is totally different from the adjacent
land, being alluvial, shale stones forming its beaches. The distance between
it and the main land to the eastward is rather more than a mile, forming
a convenient anchorage sheltered from all winds. E.N.E. from the island
is East Cone, a remarkable peak, 750 feet high, overlooking Typung bay,
the distance across being 1^ miles, and the land but little elevated. Under
the peak is Namoa village, and in the bay south of it, a peaked rock and a
fiunken reef.

jajrcBOBAOB. — The north-west part of Mirs bay, northward of Crooked
island, gradually shoals to the westward, and affords good anchorage. The
northern shores of the bay are steep-to. Anchorage in the N.E. monsoon
will be found aU along the eastern shore of the bay to the southward of
Peng-chau ; but the number of fishing platforms on stakes in 8 and 9

Online LibraryGreat Britain. Hydrographic OfficeThe China Sea directory: Comprising the coasts of China from Hong Kong to ... → online text (page 15 of 72)