29-Jun-2014 -- Story continues from 40°N 124°E.
The journey to our next confluence took us past the city of Dāndōng (丹东市), a must-stop tourist destination. After a rainy start early in the day, the sun was now beating down quite strongly. We ate lunch at a restaurant in the city, then headed down to the famous Broken Bridge (断桥), the remnants of a bridge that was repeatedly bombed by the United States during the Korean War in the early 1950s. A newer, complete bridge has been built next to it, and we saw several tourist buses making their way across it.
Tourists are free to walk out on what's left of the old bridge, halfway across the Yālǜ River (鸭绿江) to North Korea. We could clearly see a derelict-looking Ferris wheel on the North Korean side, as well as a pair of well-patronised water slides.
The whole area on the Chinese side of the river was geared up for tourists, with a multitude of stalls selling all sorts of tourist junk, including many items that were exactly the same as those Andy and I had seen in Chiang Mai several weeks earlier. We even saw a straw hat for sale bearing the word "Thailand"!
Enough of tourist diversions. It was time to get on with the real business at hand. We drove northeast to Kuāndiàn County (宽甸满族自治县) to spend the night. On the way, Andy confided in me, "I like Peter. He's a good driver." This was just as well, because Peter was the only one of us who had a Chinese driver's licence, so he was lumbered with all the driving.
We slept late the next morning. It was a hot sunny day.
We parked on a track near a hennery (empty) and a farmhouse (apparently empty), then set off on foot for the remaining 400 or so metres to the confluence. After following one rocky track uphill for about 200 metres, we realised it was not the right one, so had to backtrack and start over.
The correct track took us to a small clearing within 50 metres of the point. The point was located to the left of the clearing, up a heavily vegetated slope. We climbed up among the trees, but the satellite reception was poor, and we ended up chasing the point all over the place before eventually deciding to give up on securing all the zeroes. I kept snapping the GPS, trying to get the lowest possible sum of distance plus accuracy. Peter took the north-south-east-west photos, then we all posed for a team shot in the clearing.
This was our first visit to a previously unvisited confluence this trip. Afterwards, Peter remarked, "That really felt like a virgin: hot, steamy, and a little bit mysterious!"
Story continues at 42°N 125°E.