28-Jun-2006 -- 38N – 118E Shāndōng (山东), China
Line Hunting Date: June 28, 2006
A wet and muddy Confluence Point
This is the second confluence point we visited as part of our drive from Qingdao to Beijing. We found the first confluence point – 37N 120E – in a granite quarry around 10.30 am. It took us more than 4 hours to reach Dōngfēng Harbor (东风港), by the northern coast of Shāndōng, and this put us about 3.8 km from this confluence point.
The entire area near Dōngfēng harbor are reclaimed wetland from ocean with large tracks of rectangular ponds – each 200 meter long and 100 meter wide. The ponds are connected by cannels for aquatic farming and salt production. This predominate water environment made the final 3 km of the approach rather treacherous. Risking getting the car stuck in mud we managed to push 1 km closer to the confluence point and forced to go on foot for the last 2 km when we reached a cannel which can only has a foot bridge.
When we were about 900 meters from the confluence point we had to ford a canal about half meter deep. As we were crossing the canal, we noticed that two people started to open the water gate and water level raised rapidly. This presented a problem later during our return.
We reached the confluence point around 5.00 pm, and it is located in a very large pond about 500 meters in length. The nearest location on the bank was about 28 meters away from the all zeros point. As we were debating to venture further into the water, a local fisherman passing by who told us that the water in the pond will reach our chest. This pretty much settled the issue. Later we met the fellow tending the “confluence pond” and learned that this is a fishery operating from April to October and his main job is to feed the fish twice a day. Most of the smaller ponds nearby were mainly for raising clams.
By the time we resumed our drive it was already 6 pm, and we were less than half way to Bèijǐng. After a sea food dinner around 9 pm, we got back to the main expressway to Bèijǐng. We reached Bèijǐng just after 1 am. The detours we took for the two very interesting confluence points all together made this a 16 hours trip instead of 8. We were a bit tired but quite happy for the two very fine hunts.
Rating of this hunt:
Degree of Challenge:
3 – the final approach through an area full of ponds and canals was not straight forward (1= very easy - drive to the point; to 5= a death march – glad it is over)
3– Unusual wetland and aquatic farming areas (Scale: 1= not interesting at all; 5= take your breath away)
2 – Seasonal community for fish and clam farming (Scale: 1=dull; 5= most stimulating)