the Degree Confluence Project

Japan : Kyūshū

18.8 km (11.7 miles) S of Hetsuka, Kimotsuki-chō, Kagoshima-ken, Kyūshū, Japan
Approx. altitude: 0 m (0 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest Multimap world confnav)
Antipode: 31°S 49°W

Accuracy: 50 m (164 ft)
Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: View North (Osumi Peninsula) #3: View East #4: View South (Tane-ga-shima) #5: View West (East side of the Cape Sata) #6: GPS Reading #7: Captain Yamazaki & Me

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  31°N 131°E  

#1: General View of Confluence

(visited by Sho S. and Captain Yamazaki)

English Narrative

08-Aug-2004 -- 北緯31度東経131度(経緯度交差地点)は鹿児島は大隈半島の南東にあり、種子島の北にあり、佐多岬から東に30kmの地点にある。海上の交差地点ではあるものの、陸地は容易に確認できる。

私は佐多岬近くにある大泊港から船で東に移動するプランを考えた。これは目的地から最近接の陸地には大きな港が無く、そこに至る道も細かったので到達することは難しいと考えたからである。 2004年8月8日、大泊港に到着した時点での問題は交差地点まで到達可能な漁船が出払ってしまっていることであった。周辺を観光しながら午後2時まで待つと、山崎船長の船が港に戻ってきた。漁協の人の話では彼の船ならば目的地点まで行けるとのことだったので、こちらの目的を話して彼に依頼すると快く引き受けてくれた。

彼のとった航路は目的地点の北まではほぼ半島沿いに行き、そこから南下するという航路である。黒潮の分流が流れてくるこの海域では海流が早いため、このような航路の取り方をする。 目的地付近まで近づいてからもこの海流に悩まされた。私達は北緯31度東経131度から最も近いときで6mまで近づくことができたものの、写真を撮るまでの間に流されてしまい、写真に収めることができたのは40m離れた地点であった。

海流には悩まされたものの天候には恵まれ、南に種子島、北に大隈半島を容易に確認でき、西には佐多岬の東側を見ることができた。当然であるが、東側には海が広がっていた。 帰路には船の方向と実際に進む方向との差で海流の速さを再認識しながら、往路より多くの時間を費やしながら大泊港まで無事に帰着した。

English Narrative

08-Aug-2004 -- The confluence 31N 131E is located southeast of the Ookuma peninsula in Kagoshima, north of Tanegashima, 30km east of Sata Point. Although it’s a confluence in the sea land can easily be seen.

I thought of a plan moving east from Daihaku harbor near Sata Point. The reason is that I thought it might be difficult to reach the point since there is no large harbor on the land closest to the confluence and the roads are narrow.

8/8/2004; the problem when we reached Daihaku harbor was that there was no fishing boat available which could possibly reach the destination. After 2 hours of waiting while sightseeing around the nearby area, Captain Yamazaki’s boat returned to the harbor. According to a fisherman his boat could take us to the confluence point. I then talked to the captain about our purpose and he pleasantly accepted it.

The route he took was to go along the peninsula to the north of the confluence point, then to go southward from there. The route is used due to the rapid sea currents in this area caused by the divided current of the Karoshio Current.

This current troubled us even when reaching the nearby destination point. Although we could get to within 6m or 31N 131E we were carried away while trying to take some pictures. In the end we could only take some pictures from a point 40m away.

Despite the troublesome current we had good weather and were easily able to see the Ookuma peninsula in the north and the east side of Sata Point in the west. Of course there was only sea in the east.

On the way back we say the speed of the current by the difference between the direction the boat was pointed and the direction the boat was actually headed. We spent much more time on the return than on the outward trip and arrived safely back at the harbor.

(Translation to English by Noriko Tygart)

 All pictures
#1: General View of Confluence
#2: View North (Osumi Peninsula)
#3: View East
#4: View South (Tane-ga-shima)
#5: View West (East side of the Cape Sata)
#6: GPS Reading
#7: Captain Yamazaki & Me
ALL: All pictures on one page (broadband access recommended)
In the Ōsumi-kaikyō strait, about halfway between Kyūshū and Tanega-shima, with a view of land in both directions.