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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 72.djvu/103

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A VISIT TO THE HANGCHOW BORE

Unlike the bores seen elsewhere, which generally occur intermittently, the Hangchow bore ascends the river at every tide, though its magnitude and speed vary considerably with the general state of the tides, and semi-monthly maxima are attained at the third tide after each new and each full moon. The latter affords a better opportunity to witness the bore under the more impressive and majestic stillness of midnight and the light and shadow of a moonlit scene. These semi-monthly maxima themselves attain greatest intensity at the times of greatest tides. Of these the autumnal equinox is preferable because of the cool and most probably fair weather and the absence of mosquitoes. The eighteenth of the Chinese eighth month is

PSM V72 D103 The shanghai bund with clock tower at a distance.png
The Bund at Shanghai. Clock Tower of Customs House shows in the Distance.

generally reckoned as the time of the greatest bore of the year. In the fall of 1906 the writer spent the first and second days after the seventh full moon (September 6 and 7) in close observation of one midnight and two noon bores.

Although observers sometimes go to Kanpu beyond the mouth of the Ch'ien-tang Kiang, and others content themselves with a view from Hangchow, from the first of these places the bore is seen when not fully formed, its two initial sections not yet united, while at Hangchow the effect, though still fairly remarkable, has completely lost its grandeur; and the best and most easily reached vantage ground is at the Haining Pagoda, though it is likely that at a point some five miles below the pagoda the bore is of even greater grandeur. This is close to where the two branches of the furious "Serpent's Head," as the