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United States. Adjutant-General's Office. Military.

Military notes on the Philippines. September 1898 online

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screened toward the north shore between the bearings of S.
by W. and ESE.

A fixed white light, showing a sector of green light through
an arc of 75° or between the bearings of N. 47° E. and N. 28°
W., is exhibited from a light-house on Sangley Point (cli. 5,
p. 49), the outer extreme of the low land at the entrance of
Port Cavite. It is elevated 29 feet above high water, and is
visible in clear weather from a distance of miles. The light
is shifted as the point extends.

A fixed red light, elevated 51 feet above the level of the sea,
is exhibited from a white circular tower, on the northern mole
at the entrance of Pasig River, and should be visible in clear
weather from a distance of 9 miles.

A fixed green light is exhibited from an iron stand painted
red, on the battery of the southern mole, entrance of Pasig
River. This light is elevated 16 feet above high water, and
should be seen from off the entrance of the river between the
bearing of NW. and SE. at a distance of 1 mile ; it bears south
from the red light on the north mole.

Corregidor Island light, Manila Bay, has been replaced by
a provisional light of the same character, but of less power,
pending the installation of a new permanent light to be
exhibited on and after August 1, 1897.

The new light will be a flashing white and red light show-
ing white and red flashes alternately every ten seconds. The
light will be 633 feet above the sea, 42 feet above the ground,
and visible 36 miles in clear weather.

Soundings from 50 to 40 fathoms will be obtained when
within 7 or 6 miles of Corregidor, decreasing gradually to 27
or 26 fathoms about 2 miles to the westward of it.

Between Corregidor and the north shore the dej^ths are 50
to 48 fathoms within ^ of a mile of the island, 26 fathoms in
mid-channel, decreasing quickly to 16 or 15 fathoms, stony
ground, within ^ mile of the north shore.



50 LUZON— WEST COAST.

La Monja, the Nun, or Maycot-k, is a higli rock, bearing
from Corregidor light W. f S., distant 3 miles, with 27 fath-
oms water within ^ of a mile of it all round. The soundings
from it decrease regularly to 20 fathoms within -| mile of the
north shore and deepen to 29 or 30 fathoms near the north-
west part of Corregidor, close to which there are two rocks,
one of which is perforated.

El Fraile (the Friar) Rock or Islet, which appears like a
sail, lies 3f miles S. i E. from Caballo light, and nearly 2
miles from the south shore of the bay. Close around it are
depths of 10 and 11 fathoms, increasing to 17 and 23 fathoms
at a short distance to the westward.

Port Mariveles, on the north side of the entrance to Manila
Bay, is about a mile wide and 1^ miles deep ; with good an-
chorage, sheltered from all but southeast winds. Vessels of
any size may moor here, and procure excellent water. Some
rocky islets, Los Cochinos, with a rock awash just outside
them, project -i- mile otf the southwest point of entrance.
Vessels may anchor in 17 fathoms, with the village bearing
NW. by W., or they may run farther into the bay if neces-
sary, the bottom being good holding ground and the anchorage
safe. This is a convenient place for vessels to touch at when
in want of wood and water, the former being an expensive
article at Manila.

From Port Mariveles the coast trends east to Point Lasisi,
then NE. to Point Limai; between the two latter points the
shore is fronted by foul ground, and between San Jose and
Real points, fishing stakes extend 2 miles from the land.

Shoal. — A shoal of 12 feet water, on which the American
ship Sea Witch grounded in 1884, is reported to lie with Kau-
kauve Point bearing west, distant 6 cables.

Limbones and Karabao islets are two rocky islets on the
south side of the entrance ; between them is Patungan Cove,
which runs in 2 miles to the SSE. From Limbones Islet the
coast is high and cliif y as far as Marigondon River, which forms
the boundary of the highlands of the Sierra de Pico de Loro.

A semaphore station has been established on Point Restinga,
1 mile east of Karabao Island.

St. Nicholas Banks are two shoals lying midway between
Caballo Island and Port Cavite (ch. 5, p. 49). The outer shoal,
nearly a mile in extent, is the larger of the two, and has but
5 feet water on its shoalest iiart. From its outer or northern



LUZON— SOUTHWEST COAST. 51

edge, in 11 feet water, Corregitlor light bears W. by S. f S.,
and Cavite churcli E. by N. ^ N. Within a ship's length to
the northwestward there are 13 and 15 fathoms water, the
soundings being no guide in approaching it because the bank
is so steep. La Monja Island, in line with the northwest point
of Corregider Island bearing W. by S. | S., leads north of
the St. Nicholas Banks.

A beacon has been constructed on the northwest head of
the northwestern of the two shoals forming St. Nicholas Banks
in Manila Bay. The beacon stands in 13 feet of water at low
water and consists of a base of concrete showing 12 feet above
low water, in the form of a truncated cone, and surmounted
by an iron tower 23 feet high, on which will be placed the
lantern for the light which is to be established.

SOUTHWEST COAST.

Although this coast is out of the ordinary track of vessels
passing up and down the China Sea, yet it is of importance
when proceeding to or from Manila, inside the Lubang
Islands. Vessels navigating along it should keep near the
shore, in order to escape the tides which run from the
entrance of Manila Bay to the southwestward.

From Limbones Island the coast trends S. by W. about 7
miles to Point Fuego, and is intersected by various bays. It
is elevated, rocky, and very steep-to, with several islets in its
vicinity.

Port Jamilo, situated about 44- miles to the southward of
Limbones Island, is on the southeast side of the bay of the
same name, and runs in about 1^ miles to the eastward ; the
entrance is about 4 to 5 cables in breadth, with depths of 16
and 14 fathoms, decreasing gradually toward the interior,
where the soundings are 5i to G| fathoms, sand and mud.

The best anchorage is on the north side, in (3^ and 7^ fath-
oms. Mangroves grow near the mouth of the river, which
discharges at the head of the port, the shore of which is low.

Soundings. — The soundings off this part of Luzon are deep
ai'id irregular, 30 to 110 fathoms, and afford but little or no
warning when approaching the dangers, close to which are
17 to GO fathoms; consequently the navigator will have to
approach the coast with proper care and caution.

The coast. — Point Fuego is moderately high and rocky,
with an islet off its north side. Two other islets, connected



52 LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST.

by a reef, lie 1^ miles SSE. of the point, and have a pinnacle
rock, awash at low water, on their eastern side.

Nasngbu Bay, about 5 miles to the southwestward of Fuego
Point, is formed by low land, with a dark, sandy shore, which
is steep-to and wooded. About the middle of this bay the
river Lian discharges ; on the bar is a depth of 2 feet at low
water. The town of Nasugbu, containing 3,000 inhabitants,
is situated on the right bank of the river. Anchorage during
the northeast monsoon can be obtained in front of the bar of
the river Lian, in 5^ to 7i fathoms, sand.

Shoal. — A rocky shoal, 1 cable long, east and west, and i of
a cable broad, with 4^ feet water over it at the eastern extrem-
ity, lies 4 cables from Nasugbu Point ; from the shoalest part,
Fortune Island bears W. i N., Point Talin S. i W., and Point
Fuego NNW. f W.

Talin Bay, lying to the north of Talin Point, is 3| miles
wide and about 1^ miles deep, but open to the NW., and foul.
Its shore is composed of alternate rocky cliffs and sandy
beaches.

Talin Point is of moderate height, of rocks and short sand
beaches which serve as a base to several pyramidal hills very
slightly wooded ; it is surrounded by a reef to the distance of
one cable.

The coast. — Two miles to the south of Point Talin is a little
bay (Matabukai) ; from here the coast trends south for 8 miles
to Point Kalatayan, and is very low, with sandy shores and
mangB.ves; it is also intersected by several estuaries, and is
fronted by a reef which extends 2 miles to seaward. Sound-
ings of 14 and 17 fathoms will be obtained ^ mile from the
edge of the reef.

Cape Santiago. — The southwest extremity of Luzon Island
is moderately high, wooded, and surrounded by a reef which
extends about a cable from the shore, and dries. The sound-
ings at the edge of the reef are 4 to 5 fathoms, deepening
abruptly to 44 and 55 fathoms at a distance of half a mile.

Light. — There is a semaphore station on Cape Santiago, in
connection with Manila, and a light-house will shortly be com-
menced.

Minerva Rock. — Vessels passing eastward of the Lubang
group and apj)roaching Cape Santiago, or St. Jago, the south-
west point of Luzon, should be careful to avoid the Minerva
Rock, which seems not to have been noticed by navigators



LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST. 53

until the Minerva, of Alloa, Captain Robertson, bound from
Sydney to Manila, struck on it at 2 a. m. September 10, 1834,
although an American shij) had been wrecked on it several
years previously. It is said to be a coral rock, having 17
fathoms water near it, and bearing from Cape Santiago SE.
^ E., distant 4 or 5 miles.

The channel eastward of the Lubang Islands, and also
between them and Mindoro, is frequented by the Spanish ves-
sels when going to or coming from Manila. The Samarang
worked through this channel easterly, and Sir Edward Belcher
remarks : " It is important to remind seamen that from about 4
to (j a. m. those who frequent this coast state that sudden heavy
squalls may be expected offshore, and as vessels are compelled
to carry a press of sail to mpke j)rogress, they should shorten
before they round Kalavite; and this especially applies to
close working to get through the channel between it and
Lubang. Even Avith caution a flurry took two jib booms in
succession between G and 10 a. m. The advantage gained
by this channel, which is free from danger as to pilotage, was
manifest, as it enabled us, having cleared the channel at 3
p. m., to reach the entrance of Manila Bay with a free wind
at 10 p. m."

Fortune Island, situated 6i miles SW. of Point Fuego, is
about a mile in extent, bare, and steep-to, with some rocks off
its southeastern side. Sir E. Belcher observes: "The island
is safe to, and, like Cabra, requires but the seaman's
attention."

Simo Banks, about 14 or 15 miles northward of the Lubang
group, consist of two banks, with a least depth of 8 fathoms
on them. The western bank extends 2 miles north and south,
and lies 12 miles W. ^ N. from Fortune Island. The eastern
bank extends NE. and SW., and bears W. by N. 8 miles from
Fortune Island. There are irregular souiidings, 21 to 109
fathoms, near these banks.

Lubang Islands are a detached group of six islands that
front the southwest end of Luzon and the northwest end of
Mindoro. They are uninhabited, with the exception of Lu-
bang Island, which in 1879 had a population of about 3,000.
The only safe anchorage for vessels during all seasons is the
port of Tilig, situated on the northeast coast of Lubang
Island.

Cabra, or Goat Island, the outer or westernmost island of the
Lubang group, extends 2 miles from NW. to SE., and is a



54 LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST.

low, flat, wooded island, with a reef projecting -i- cable from
its north and northeast sides.

Sir E. Belcher remarks: "Some doubt existing as to the
true position of the dangers reported to extend off this island,
a day was devoted to establish this turning point of the navi-
gation of these seas."

The Samarang grazed the island on its eastern side, round-
ing to and anchoring off" its southern face. The distance
usually observed in passing land is the only question to be
noticed here. No dangers requiring express caution exist.
It has also been passed by the Samarang very close on the
west side, much within the range that any merchant vessel
could try without the appearance of danger. In the voyage
of H. M. S. Snlpliur it is observed: "Both the Starling and
Sulphur shaved the surf line of Cabra without obtaining
soundings ; therefore, the dangers reported to lie to the north-
ward of this island are incorrectly stated."

The channel between this island and Lubang is about 1\
miles broad, and may be navigated without fear, as the reefs
on the north side of Lubang always show. In this channel
the flood sets to the north and the ebb to the south.

Light. — Near the western extreme of Cabra Island is exhib-
ited a group flashing white light every minute, the duration
of each flash being eight seconds, the interval between each
two flashes of the same group seven seconds, and the interval
between the groups thirty-seven seconds. It is visible sea-
ward through an arc of 268°, or from the bearing of S. 49° W.
to N. 39° W.

The light is elevated 217 feet above the sea, and should be
seen in clear weather from a distance of 22 miles.

The light-house, 67 feet high, and constructed of brick, is
square in shape, with sloping base, and keeper's dwelling at-
tached on its eastern side.

Lubang Island, extending about 16 miles nearly NW. and
SE., is the largest and most important island of the group;
it is high in the middle, but low at each extreme.

Its coasts are protected by a reef which extends about i of
a mile from the shore; the southwest coast is rocky. On the
eastern and northeastern sides are several bays, more or less
protected, but diflicult to make, owing to the shoals and reefs
by which they are inclosed.

Port Tilig, on the northeast coast of Lubang, is the only
safe anchorage for vessels in all seasons ; it is sheltered from



LUBAN ISLAND



LOOC BAT







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S«<J» o/ B Cub!™






t


x-'V


■-[


A


^^




J


V


i


A



LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST. 55

all winds and completely protected from the sea. The hold-
ing ground is excellent. The entrance faces the NNW, and
is beaconed by the reefs on which the sea breaks during
rough weather. In the entrance there are dej:>tlis of 14 to 5^
fathoms in low water, in mid-channel, and the western shore
can be approached until the anchorage in front of the bastion
is reached, in 5^ to 3f fathoms, mud and sand. The bottom
of the bay is occupied by a shoal in the shape of a half moon,
showing at Ioav water, which divides the port into two dis-
tinct anchorages.

The San Vicente bastion is situated on the western point of
the entrance; it is a square tower of rough stone, upon the
parapet of which a wooden house has been erected.

Ingress and egress, unless in very favorable weather, owing
to its being on a lee shore, is questionable for a sailing vessel.

Cattle, pigs, and poultry can be obtained at moderate prices,
also a fair supply of water. There are no vegetables, and
fruit is very scarce.

Tides. — The tides are complicated. It is high water, full
and change, in Port Tilig at 9h. 30m. ; springs rise 5 feet.

Luk (Looc) Bay (ch. 6, p. 55), on the east side of Lubang, is
thus described by Sir E. Belcher: "On the eastern end of
Lubang Island, and covered by Ambil Island, is the very snug
port of Luk, which affords safe retreat in the event of accident
in passing Kalavite or during the navigation of Verde Island
Passage. It is pretty free from dangers at the mouth, and
good holding ground will be found in depths between 10 and
20 fathoms. Within the former depth it suddenly shoals,
and several lines of coral ledge bar the inner depths of the
bay from direct access, although excellent shelter would be
found by a vessel moored between these barriers to which they
might easily be conducted. At the village a brisk rivulet
supplies most excellent water, but boats can not fill except at
high water."

In approaching the bay caution must be observed, as a 3^
fathoms patch is marked on the chart about 2^ miles to the
eastward of the southern horn of the bay. Water, as well as
wood, is easily procured, but bullocks, stock, vegetables, etc.,
are at the same (or higher) prices as Manila.

From Luk Bay the coast trends to the NW. about 7 miles
to Port Tilig, and -is generally fringed with reefs. There are



No.G



LUBAN ISLAND



\



LOOC BA'

Surveyed, by
CATT" SIH.E ■ HE I A : HF.H, RJf. C J.

1846

SOUNDINGS IN FATHOMS
J
Jfatural Sca2e M.ioo



San Rafael ."i i\



Scale at 10 CaUes or 1 Sea i



LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST. 55

all winds and completely protected from the sea. The hold-
ing ground is excellent. The entrance faces the NNW. and
is beaconed by the reefs on which the sea breaks during
rough weather. In the entrance there are depths of 14 to 5^
fathoms in low water, in mid-channel, and the western shore
can be approached until the anchorage in front of the bastion
is reached, in 5^ to of fathoms, mud and sand. The bottom
of the bay is occupied by a shoal in the shape of a half moon,
showing at low water, which divides the i><-*i't into two dis-
tinct anchorages.

The San Vicente bastion is situated on the western point of
the entrance; it is a square tower of rough stone, upon the
parapet of which a wooden house has been erected.

Ingress and egress, unless in very favorable weather, owing
to its being on a lee shore, is questionable for a sailing vessel.

Cattle, pigs, and poultry can be obtained at moderate prices,
also a fair supply of water. There are no vegetables, and
fruit is very scarce.

Tides. — The tides are complicated. It is high water, full
and change, in Port Tilig at 9h. 30m. ; springs rise 5 feet.

Luk (Looc) Bay (cli. 6, p. 55), on the east side of Lubang, is
thus described by Sir E. Belcher: "On the eastern end of
Lubang Island, and covered by Ambil Island, is the very snug
port of Luk, which affords safe retreat in the event of accident
in passing Kalavite or during the navigation of Verde Island
Passage. It is pretty free from dangers at the mouth, and
good holding ground will be found in depths between 10 and
20 fathoms. Within the former depth it suddenly shoals,
and several lines of coral ledge bar the inner depths of the
bay from direct access, although excellent shelter would be
found by a vessel moored between these barriers to which they
might easily be conducted. At the village a brisk rivulet
supplies most excellent water, but boats can not fill excei)t at
high water."

In approaching the bay caution must be observed, as a 3^
fathoms patch is marked on the chart about 2|- miles to the
eastward of the southern horn of the bay. Water, as well as
wood, is easily procured, but bullocks, stock, vegetables, etc.,
are at the same (or higher) prices as Manila.

From Luk Bay the coast trends to the NW. about 7 miles
to Port Tilig, and -is generally fringed with reefs. There are



5() T.I'ZON — SOITTHWEST (OAST.

suiiu' small l);iys on this coast, l)ut tlu-y only afford protection
among the I'et^fs for small vessels with local knowledge.

Amhil, or Amul Island,, lying to the east of Lnbang, is about
4^ miles east and west, and is formed by a conical mountain
about 2,500 feet high with a plain on its western side. The
northeast coast is high and rocky, with an open bay, in which
are depths of 10 to 11 fathoms ; on the west side is a bay ^ mile
broad in which anchorage can be obtained in 4 fathoms, mud;
a reef extends 2 cables from the shores of this bay.

The passage between Ambil and Lubang is clear, but caution
is necessary on account of the reefs, which contract the chan-
nel to one-half its apparent breadth. The flood tide sets to
the south and the ebb to the north through this channel.

Afuera Bank, to the north of Lubang Island and 2^ miles
from Port Tilig, extends 1| miles from east to west and is f
of a mile broad, with deptlis of 2 to 4 fathoms over it. From
the bastion of Tilig the shoalest part bears between N. f W.
and N. by W. i W.

Ambil Bank, a crescent-shaped shoal, is 2 miles in extent,
with depths of 4 to 5^ fathoms on it, and a patch of rock in
the center, with 2 fathoms water over it. It lies NW. of
Ambil Island and close to it, the channel between the edge
of the bank and the NW. point of the island being 4 cables
broad.

Malavatuan Island, 3 miles to the north of Ambil, is about
3 cables in extent NE. and SW., and covered with brushwood.
It is steep-to, and has a passage 1^ miles broad between it and
Mandani Island, with depths in it of 5| to 7 fathoms. To the
north and northwestward of this island are shoal patches on
which the least water appears to be G fathoms, the soundings
round about being 36 to 50 and 90 fathoms.

■ Mandani Island, 1 mile north of Ambil, is rather more than
^ mile in extent, and composed of two small hills of unequal
height. On the southwest side is a shoal a cable from the
shore ; the other sides are steep-to.

Golo Island, a high but long narrow strip of land, 8 miles
WNW. and ESE., with reefs off its northeast, east, and south-
east points, adjoins the southeastern extreme of Lubang. The
south side of Golo Island must be approached with caution ;
coral reefs extend about 1 cable from the shore. H. M. S.
Teazer, 1872, anchored in 13 fathoms, mud, oft' this part of the



LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST. 57

island, with Cape Kalavite bearing S. | W., and tlie south-
east extreme of Golo Island SE. by E. f E. About i of a
cable nearer the shore 4 and 5 fathoms, coral, were obtained.

The channel between this island and Lubang is 4 cables
broad, with a rock nearly awash in its center. The flood
tide runs to the south, and the ebb to the north through this
channel.

Flying Cloud Rock. — The ship Flying Cloud, on the Ttli
of April, 1854, is reported to have struck on a sunken rock,
Avith (') to 12 feet water on it, and about 30 or 35 feet in diam-
eter; it is said to lie in latitude 13° 28' N., longitude 110° 34'
E. (approximate).

Cape Santiago is moderately high, wooded, and surrounded
by a reef which extends about a cable from the shore, and
dries. The soundings at the edge of the reef are 4 to 5 fathoms,
deepening abruptly to 44 and 55 fathoms at the distance of ^
mile.

Light. — There is a semaphore station on Cape Santiago in
connection with Manila, and a light-house will shortly be com-
menced.

Minerva Rock, on which the Minerva, of Alloa, is reported
to have struck at 2 a.m., September 10, 1834, is said to be a
coral rock, having 17 fathoms water near it, and bearing from
Cape Santiago SE. ^ E., distant 4 or 5 miles. The rock was
searched for unsuccessfully by the Spanish Hydrographic
Commission under Capt. D. Claudio Montero, and has been
erased from the Sj^anish charts.

. Pagapas Bay, between Cape Santiago and Point San Pedrino
to the northward, is very deep ; the shore is fringed by a nar-
row reef with soundings of 7 fathoms near its edge. Anchor-
age may be found on the eastern side of the bay in 7 fathoms ;
the western part is rocky. At the bottom of the bay is the
little port, Kalaboso, formed by a break in the reef ; the en-
trance is difficult and it is only frequented by coasters.

Point San Pedrino is surmounted by a hillock; it is well
wooded, and is encircled l)y a reef that extends to a cable's
distance from the shore.

Balayan Bay, the great bay between Cape Santiago and
Point Benagalet or Kalumpan, is clear of danger, with bottom
of sand and mud, but the shores are so steep that a vessel must
approach very close to get within 12 fathoms depth.



58 LUZON — SOUTHWEST COAST.

W^inds and tides. — The winds in this bay follow the mon-
soo]is generally ; the land breeze blows nearly every evening.
The Hood stream makes to the southward and the ebb to the
northward.

Balayan town, at the mouth of the river of the same name,
is situated G miles to the northward of Point San Pedriho ;
there is anchorage to the eastward of the river in 3 to G
fathoms, sand and rock, sheltered from all winds but those
from the southward ; only boats of light draft can enter the
river, as the bar has only 3 feet of water over it at high water.
Mount Balayan, which lies 3 miles NE. of the town, serves
as a guide to the anchorage. The town consists of 25,000 in-
habitants, and affords supplies of all kinds.

Taal lies 11 miles ESE. of Balayan; the coast between these
two towns is low and sandy, but steej)-to. This important
town is at the entrance of the river Pansipit, into which ves-
sels of 100 tons burden can enter. The best anchorage is to
the north of the mouth of the river near the shore in 7 fath-
oms, sand, with the fort of Taal in line with Mount Makalog;
it is sheltered from all winds from north to south through east.



Online LibraryUnited States. Adjutant-General's Office. MilitaryMilitary notes on the Philippines. September 1898 → online text (page 6 of 31)