of the river 4 miles above Shan-tau-pien is the Ta-tung or Kwadung
rapid, where a small island of rock stands in mid-stream.
IbUMAM a&d MTrjkM oomOBS. — ^Three miles above Ta-tung rapid, a
precipitous range 3,000 feet high crosses the river, through which the
river fiows for 2 miles by the imposing gorge of Lukan, the sides of which
rise vertically in huge walls of rock to a prodigious height. A little above
this gorge is the village of Tsing-tan and a rapid of considerable strength,
and 2 miles above is the Mitan gorge which hems in the river for another
couple of miles between vertical cliffs 900 feet high, whence a further
4 miles of stream very full of reefs and rocks above water, which, early in
April, caused almost the whole to be a rapid, carries yon up to Kwei,
where are a number more reefs. There is also a pretty strong rapid when
the water is high opposite the place.
: is a small walled town standing on sloping ground on the left bank,
42 miles above Ichang, but having neither trade nor anything else to give
it importance. About 2 miles above, coal is worked on the hill side on the
elseif (getClientWidth() > 430)
south shore of the river, and 4 miles above Kwei is the Yeh-tan rapid,
where there is an islet in the centre of the river. The New-kau rapid
is 5 miles farther up abreast a village with a pagoda above it on the north
bank. Patung, 5 miles above this, the last town in the province ofHupeh,
is a small place without a wall, situated on rather steep sloping ground on
the south bank, and on the opposite side stands a joss house at a con-
siderable height above the river.
oo&GB. — Six miles above Patung after passing one rapid,
the mouth of a gorge is entered, between high precipitous mountains on
either hand, where are situated the rapid and village of Kwan-du-kow.
This gorge, the longest on the river, is continuous as far as the city of
Digitized by VjOOQIC
€HAP.vni.] ICHANG-FF TO KWEI-CHAU FU. 433
Wushan, a distance of 23 miles. This is a walled town on the north bank^
the first met in Sz'chuan, and a small tributary flows into the Yangtse on
its east side.
vnJBBiJEL'xr to X'WBZ-CHOixr TV. — Three miles above Wushan is the
Hea-ma rapid, above which the river is clear for 10 miles, to the entrance
of another gorge known as the Fung-siang or Wind-box. At its lower
entrance is a rock, awash (April) in mid-channel, and a sand-bank off a
mountain stream on the south side. One part of the pass is not over
150 yards wide, and the cliffs tower to a prodigious height. An isolated
rock stands out nearly mid-stream ; and on emerging from the gorge a tall
white pagoda comes in view, and Kwei-chow is seen 3 miles above.
At Kwei-chow fu the Admiralty survey terminates, but the explorations*
of Capt. Blakiston and Colonel Sarel extend 500 miles beyond into the
remote parts of the province of Sz'chuan, 1,570 miles from the sea, but the
river above Kwei-chow has no nautical interest as it is not navigable even
by small steam vessels. The principal towns they visited are Wan hien
57 miles, Chung-king fu 256 miles, Siu-chow fu 458 miles, and Pingshan,
their ferthest, 496 miles above Kwei-chau fu.
Exploration of 1869. — A narrative of the proceedings of the Special
Commission to examine the Yangtse as high as Chung-king fu, in 1869,
conducted by R. Swinhoe, Esq. H.M. Consul, is published (with map) in
the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society, Vol. XL. for 1870, page
268. The reports of the naval officers attached to the expedition, as to
the navigability of the river above Iching, are given in the Appendix
to this volume, p. 578.
* Five Months on the Yangtse, by Capt. Blakiston, R.A.
10251. E E
Digitized by VjOOQIC
COAST OF CHINA FROM THE YANGTSE EIANG TO
INCLIT^ING THE EASTERN AND YELLOW SEAS, SHANTUNG PRO-
MONTORY, YELLOW RIVER, THE TREATY PORT OF CHIFU, PE-CHni
STRAIT AND THE SOUTH COAST OF LIAU-TUNG.
Vabiatioh in 1874.
Yan^rtBc Kiang Entrance, 2*» 2(/ W. | Pc-chili Strait, 3° 40' W.
The VUVO-XAX, or Eastern Sea of the Chinese, although recognized
by geographers, is scarcely known by that name to navigators. It com-
pri$H.^s the space lying between the Yellow sea and the Pacific, being
separated from the former by an imaginary line joining the mouth of the
Yangtse and the Korea, and from the latter by the chain of islands stretching
from Kiusiu (Japan) to Lu-chu and Formosa. Its climate is temperate,
though subject to gales and occasional snow storms in winter ; the summer
season is fine, and it is not within the limit of the typhoons. Its currents,
beyond the influence of the Yangtse and coast tides, seem to be irregular,
except in its eastern part, through which the Japan stream flows north-
eastward from Formosa towards the Pacific along the southern sbores of
Japan, and northward with some regularity, especially in the summer
season, through Korea strait.*
Tbe IWAITG HAZ, or Yellow Sea, is bounded on the west by the deep
bight of the coast formed between the Yangtse and the Shantung
promontory, and on the east by the coast of Korea. It is mostly muddy
and of a yellow colour in its southern part, even far out from the estuary
of the Yangtse, its discoloration being due to the mud brought down by
that and the Yellow river, from which latter it formerly derivedf its name ;
but north of this river the sea water is clear, and knovTn to the junkmen
as the Black- water ocean.
This sea was little frequented by foreign vessels pBjjjous to 1858, but
since that year all the prominent features of its coast have been surveyed
or examined, and the dangers of it are now sufficiently well known, to
answer the requirements of safe navigation between the treaty ports of
China and Japan. The Korean coast and 200 miles of an unapproach-
able shore north of the Yangtse still remain unexplored, but they are
* See Admiralty Chart :— China, from Hong Kong to Liau-tung, No. 1,262; scale,
■f Of late years the Yellow river has discharged itself into the gulf of Pe-chili.
Digitized by LjOO^IC
CHAP. IX.] YELLOW SEA — ^WINDS AND WEATHER. 435
rarely approached by the mariner, and it is to be hoped that a better
knowledge of these localities may lead to the discovery of some new
harbours, of which the coasts are somewhat deficient, although there are
many excellent anchorages. There is a considerable coasting trade carried
on principally with Shanghai, Ningpo and Tientsin, and also with Ta-ku-
san in the Korea.
"wnrBS and "WViLTHEB. — The climates of the Eastern and Yellow
seas are in most respects identical, although there is considerable variation
between their remote extremes, viz^ the region about Formosa and Lu-chu
in the one, anS that of the coast of Shantung in the other.
Zb tiie Yellow sea, near the coasts, the winds throughout the greater
part of the year are local. Between Shanghai and the Korea, and almost
embracing the Shantung promontory, in December and January, it blows
almost constantly from the north-west, (seldom ranging beyond North
and W.S.W.,) with gales of long duration from North to N.W., sometimes
with fine, but generally with overcast, gloomy weather attended with rain.
Towards the China coast the wind follows more the trend of the shore,
and between Shanghai and the gulf of Pe-chili, Captain Goodenough, of
n.M.S. Renardy which ran the mails in that season, states that a fresh
N.N.E. wind blew almost incessantly until the end of February, when it
veered more to the eastward.
There are, however, breaks in this regularity ; December 1861 set in
with a N.W. gale which continued a week, succeeded by a South gale
veering to West and returning to the former quarter, after which the
wind was variable until the 16th, but chiefly fine, when N.E. winds set
in, threatening snow. Snow is rare at Shanghai, but the mountains and
coasts of Shantung and the Korea are covered with it in Januaiy,
February, and part of March, and high lands remain covered later.
Ta tbe Sastem sea. — In the spring and until June, moderate winds
from East prevail, bringing rain and drizzle, generally when the wind
veers a Httle to the northward, also occasional stiff N.E. breezes ;
S.W. winds occur but rarely, but bring fine weather for short intervals.
Later in the season the winds are variable, inclining chiefiy to S.E., with
occasional N.W.'Bl:eezes. Towards Japan it is recorded that westerly
winds prevailed at the end of July. Early in September, the winds pre-
vail between E.N.E. and South, and strong East gales have been known^
bu are very unusual.
n tbe Sliantimgr coast the wind during the spring and summer
m( ^ths is' variable, and there is but little rain. In May the wind was
N. V. to N.E. 9 days; East to S.E. 7 days; South to S.W. 10 days;
W t, calm, and variable 5 days. There wai fog on 7 days, and rain
£ £ 2
Digitized by VjOOQIC
436 YAXGTSE KIANG TO PE-CHILI STRAIT. [chap.ix.
on 5 days. East winds brought rain and gloomy weather ; southerly
winds the fog. After Maj the winds along the coast became more
variable (chiefly south-easterly), light easterly winds prevailing with very
dry weather, gales or strong winds being of rare occurrence, and those
lasting but a few hoursy seldom twelve. Sudden and heavy squalls and
thunderstorms also occur in the summer months. A sudden fall of the
barometer with the wind easterly is almost sure to be followed by a short
gale, sometimes not commencing till the barometer has risen considerably.
VIDBS Mid omuunnn. — ^The tidal wave appears to come in to the
Yellow sea from the south-eastward in the form of a tongue, making high
water at the Shantung promontory only 2 hours later than at GntzM
ishind, although it is several hours later on the intermediate coasts. The
rise at Gutzlaff is 15 feet, but at the promontory only 6 feet ; whilst
opposite on the Korean coast it rises to 20, and in one place even 30 feet;
a phenomenon almost exactly similar to that which occurs in the English
and Irish channels.
The flood sets West, and the ebb East, along the Shantung coast, to
within 100 miles of the ancient or southern outlet of the Yellow river ;
but the rotatory tides of the Yangtse have been observed off shore, 120
miles north of the latter. In lat 33° 15' N., long 122° 16' E., 70 miles
from the coast, and 127 miles North (true) of the Ariadne rock, it was
high water, fuU and change, about 1 o'clock, and the rise and fall abont
9 feet. During the whole rise and Ml of the afternoon tide, it set from
N.N.W. to N.N.E. at a maximum of nearly 2 knots, and being nearly
slack for 2 hours ; and during the whole ajn. rise and fall, it set weakly to
the southward for 13 hours ; making one complete revolution in 24 hours.
These tides were observed in December, and are recorded chiefly with
the hope that more light may be thrown upon them by others. A stiff
S.W. wind was blowing at the time, which may account for the weakness
of the southerly current, as it is well known that in the northerly monsoon
the southerly set predominates.
PASSAGB between SHAwghaz and TAPiur. — Sailing vessels bound
from Shanghai to Hakodadi or to Nagasaki (Japan), in May and June,
should endeavour to make as much easting as possible, as they are liable
by standing long on the starboard tack to be set to the northward amongst
the Korean groups by the prevailing easterly winds. By making a
landfall about the south part of Kiusiu, they will sometimes have the
assistance of that arm of the Japan stream which sets to the north-
ward by the Korea strait.
If bound southward from the above ports in the winter months, it should
be recollected that a continuance of north-westerly winds may set a vessel to
Digitized .by VjOOQIC
CHAP. IX.] THE YELLOW RIVER. 437
leeward of Video, as happened to H.M. surveying vessels ActcBon and
Dove in December 1859, on their passage from Tsa sima to Shanghai.
If bound from the gulf of Pe-chili to Shanghai in the northerly monsoon,
care must be taken not to overrun the distance (see p. 355).
Tiie Tfi&KO'vr BiVEit or "WSiLiTG BO^, is little inferior to the Yang-tse
in magnitude, being nearly 2,500 miles in length, but beyond 250 miles
from the sea it is totally unnavigable, and is alike, at present, the most
useless and impracticable river in the world. Flowing through the midst
of a densely peopled and highly cultivated country, this remarkable river
offers no facilities for navigation throughout a great extent of its course,
and it has gained the apt and striking name of " China's Sorrow," on
account of the exposure. of the Great plain (which its lower course
traverses) to disastrous inundations, which are a perpetual source of
wasteful expenditure to the government and of peril and calamity to the
In the lower part of its course from the cities of Hwai-king andKai-
fong to the sea, a distance of 350 miles, this great river has no permanent
bed,f alternately changing its direction through the Great plain, north or
south of the mountains of Shantung, and has for ages been dependent on
the exertions of the government in keeping it within vast embankments,
to prevent the periodic desolation of a province by its inundations j the
most terrible of. these occurred in 1642, when the city of Kai-fong was
submerged 20 feet, and 200,000 persons are said to have perished.
The source of the YeUow river is in the region of the Ko-ko-nor, on the
eastern borders of Tibet, and close to the upper waters of the Yang-tse
kiang. On the northern side of the mountain range of the Bayankara,
in lat. 35** N., long. 96° E., beyond the frontier of Sz'chuen, a number of
springs or lakelets, in a plain called Sing-su-hai or Sea of Constellations,
unite in two larger ones called Ala-nor. From these the river winds in
a most crooked course for 300 miles about the gorges of the mountains,
and then runs north-east and east to Lan-chu fu in Kansuh, having flowed
about 700 miles in its devious course.
Thence turning north-north-east for 400 miles (250 of which is along
the Great wall), the river bends eastward by the Inshan range, along the
edge of the table-land of Mongolia, for 200 miles, when, in long. 110° E.,
it is deflected to the south for 400 miles, forming a rectangular bend, at
th northern part of which, for more than 500 miles, it receives not a single
sti sam of any size, while it is still so large and rapid in Shansi as to
de land great precaution when crossing it in boats.
* Williams's Middle Kingdom, Vol. I, p. 16.
t See note on next page.
Digitized by VjOOQIC
438 YANGTSE KIAXG TO PE-CHILI STRAIT. [chap.el
The river then enters the Great plain, 1,100 miles below Lan-cha fu.
In this part of its course it becomes tinged with the clay which imparts to
it both name and colour. At the south-western part of Shansi it receiVes
its larpost tributary, the river Wei, which comes in from the westward
after a course of 400 miles, and which is more available, as far as means
of navigation are now had amongst the Chinese, than the whole of its
mighty competitor. From this angular turn the parent river flows east-
wanl to the sea for 600 miles, being in some parts of Honan above the
plain on its sides, and finally disembogues in about lat. 34° N.,* bearing
the character of a mighty, impracticable, turbid, furious stream throughout
moMt of itH long route.
The area of its basin is estimated at 700,000 square miles, — aboa* the
same as that of the Tang-tse. It is but little used by the Chinese for
navigation, and the cities on its banks are in constant jeopardy o£ being
submerged. Foreign skill and science are necessary to teach the people
how to restrain its fury, and western steamers alone can stem its im-
petuous current and make it a channel for commerce. In its progress the
Yellow river receives fewer important tributaries than any other large
river in the world, except the Nile ; the principal being the Wei and I<u
in Shansi, and the waters of lake Hong-tse in Kiang-su.
8AWB-BAVK0 XTOSTB of Hm TAlTO-TSJi. — ^The coast for the 150
miles between the entrances of the Yangtse and Yellow rivers is low,
and intersected by numerous streams. The Grand canal • connects the
two rivers at their nearest point of approach to each other, where they
are only 75 miles apart. The canal is raised considerably above the plain
at Whai-ngan on the Yellow river, a little below the Hung-tse lake, and
45 miles above the river's mouth, and thence falls to the level of the
Yang-tse at Chin-kiang fu.
The whole of this low coast is fronted by extensive flats and shoal
banks, projecting in some places above 60 miles fix>m the land, and
rendering the approach dangerous for vessels of large draught unt^ better
known, although there may probably be channels among the banks in the
neighbourhood of the coast frequented by the native trading vessels.
They all lie west of the meridian of 122° E., except off* the northern
entrance of the Yang-tse and Tsung-ming. H.M.S. Highflyer^ July 18^9,
had soundings of 12 fathoms, abreast of and 100 miles from the mouth
of the Yellow river. These shoals are thus described in a Chinese
itinerary : —
" To the north of Yushan, which is Shaweishan island, at the entrance
* This refers to the southern outlet of the river, but in 1850 it burst its embankments,
and the lower part of the river ^as diverted to the northward of the Shantung
peninsula, its present outlet being the Li-tsin-ho, in lat. 38° 20' N. The new course
of the river is described on pageb 510 and 581.
Digitized by VjOOQIC
CHAP. IX.] COAST NORTH OF OLD YELLOW RIVER. 439
of the Yang-tse, there are several long belts of sand, and to the westward
of the same the sand-banks all assume a more compact form. They are
very numerous, but the figures are various ; hence the different names."
Of these belts, six are represented lying north one of the other, but
gradually receding to the westward, viz. : — the Pan sha* nearest Shawei-
shan ; then Hi-tei sha ; these lie off Liau-kio-tsui, the northern cape into
the river. North of these is the Liu-szi kiang, a channel having 7 to 8
fathoms at its outer part, and then the Wu-nan sha and Lankia sha, vrith
a channel between them of 8 to 9 fathoms water : the Chin-kia lies north
of these, its eastern point in 5 fathoms being probably that which is in
lat. 33° N., long. 121° 55' E. ; and lastly, the smallest of these, the
Hwan-tsi sha, rather to the north-west. To the north-west of these belts
are nine irregular banks towards the mouth of the Yellow river, vdth
passages marked between them and the coast, but some of them are
Tbe TA SHiL or Great sand-bank stretching off the coast to the south-
ward of the entrance of the Yellow river, is 80 or 90 miles in length, east
and west, and probably 30 miles broad. In 1861 H.M. survey ing7vessel
Dove sounded on its eastern extreme in 5 fathoms, in lat. 34° 24f N.,
long. 121° 40^ E. ; also in 7 fathoms 22 miles S.S.E. of the above position.
The junks are said to ground frequently on this bank, from which it may
be supposed there are breaks in it, which they attempt to pass through
Junks making passages always pass well outside it. There are probably
channels near the shore, for many of the sand banks are named.
FOUR zs&AlTBS. — On various Chinese maps four hills or islands are
represented af from 30 to 50 miles northward of the Yellow river entrance.
Two of these were sighted by the Dove on making the coast in December
1861, and their positions approximately fixed. The north-eastern one is
in about lat. 35° N., long. 119° 40' E., and probably agrees with the
Chinese Ying-yu-mun. . It is about a mile in extent, has a fiat rugged top
with abrupt sides as if of sandstone foiination, and is 100 or 200 feet
A smaller islet or rock, of conical shape, probably the Chinese Nai-nai-
shan, was also seen from the mast-head, about 10 miles south-west of
Ying-yu-mun. If the other two exist, they are Mun-li-shan lying south
of Ying-yu-naun, and Kai-shan, south-east of it and the more distant of
the two. To the south and east of Kai-shan (probably Yu-chu of the
Admiralty chart), and between it and the Ta sha, many ridges of sand are
delineated on a Chinese map.
Tbe COAST north of these islands, though not steep-to, may be ap-
proached with a proper degree of caution. The water is clear (as to
* Sha signifies sand, or sand bank.
Digitized by VjOOQIC
440 YANGTSE SIAXG TO PB-CHILI STBAIT. [chap.ix.
8€4llmcntiiry matter), and the bottom gravellj to the northward of the
banks above mentioned.
The southernmost point of the coast of Shantung approached bj a
European vessel is in lat. 35° W N., long. 119° 18' E. The shore here is
low and undulating, with detached hiU ranges, 1,000 to 1,500 feet high,
which recede from the coast at a point 10 miles north of this, and were
ah«o seen stretching to the southward, to within 60 miles of the Yellow
river. A track survey* only was made from this to Kyau-diau bay, and
many of the names on the Chinese maps could not be identified.
The character of the whole of the shore^ hereabouts, is generally low
at the coast line, with projecting reefs ; there are sandy bays between the
points ; and isolated hills standing on low plains, which gradually attain
toward the northward the altitude of mountains.
TOWBIft POXVT is so named from a conspicuous square tower standing
on a low hill. The small town here is probably Shi-kien so or Jih-chau
hien. The point is low and rocky, and two reefs extend a considerable
distance off it, but they may be passed at a mile in 7 fathoms. At 4 miles
south-west of the point are some earth cliffs, probably the Shan-nan tau
(Hills' South head of the Chinese) lying under a sharp hill which has
a tower on its eastern spur ; off these cliffs an extensive reef dries out
a mile, and shoal ground, 5^ fathoms, rock, was passed over at 2^ miles
from the shore.
There are also reefs of considerable extent skirting the coast for 6 miles
north of Tower point. About N.W. by W. 12 miles and N. by W. 6 miles
£ om the point are two conspicuous isolated hills, 6 miles apart, respec-
tively 1,000 and 800 feet in height ; that nearest the coast slopes towards
the sea, and terminates eastward in a bluff, which is the southern point
of entrance of a large open bay 9 miles across and 7 miles deep, the
north-eastern point of which is low and very rocky, with an island off
it similar in character. West 3 miles from the latter point a reef was
seen fully a mile in extent, and beyond it, under some low cliff-sided hills
on the north shore of the bay, a jimk anchorage, and what may have been
the entrance of a river. This anchorage is the Seching-tseih of the
Chinese (West city gathering), and possibly an excellent harbour.
'WAVO-XZA-TAZ BAT. — North-cast of this reef point is the anchorage
of Wang-kia-tai, a long narrow bay having very shallow water ; its shores
are low and rocky, with long projecting reefs, and must not be approached
on either side. The bay affords shelter from north and north-east winds
* By Lieut. Chas. Bullock, R.N., 1861. The doubtful names mentioned in the follow-
ing description are taken from a Chinese map, but the features of the coast line thereon
are too distorted to admit their being followed accurately.
Digitized by VjOOQIC
CHAP. IX.] WANG-KEA-TAI. — TO-LO-SAN ISLAND. 441
in firom 3 to 5 fathoms, mud ; but it is quite exposed to the southward,
and even in 2 fathoms, which is outside where the junks were lying, it is
open from S.E. to S.W. There were 30 junks lying here in December
1861, but the junkmen were under no apprehension with regard to the
weather, and considered the anchorage a safe one at that season. There
is trade with Shanghai, but chiefly with Ningpo. Junks were lading with
salted pigs, cotton, cabbages, and radishes. The temple of Lung-wang
on the shore of the bay, is in lat. 35° 39^ N., long. 119° 48' E.
-It is high water, full and change, in Wang-kia-tai bay, at
about 6 h. m. ; springs rise 12 feet, neaps 9 feet. The stream during
the whole ebb sets to the north-east along the coast, and the amount of tide
was 6 miles. It may therefore be assumed that, as at Staunton island,
the flood sets along the coast to the south-west.
&JLiro-'n TAV. — The shores of the headland east of Wang-kia-tai are
low and rocky, except on the sea coast, where there are two hills 600 and
400 feet high (the latter or south-eastern having a hippie on it), the
termination of a low range of hills. Lang-yi tau lies off* shore, a mile
distant from the base of the nipple-hill, and has a broad looking channel