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Geology and Terrain
Geology and Terrain
Date: 2009-06-06
Both Kinmen and Little Kinmen islands are built on a base of granitic gneiss. The Mt. Taiwu area has a hilly terrain mainly composed of granitic gneiss, and Mt. Taiwu rises to a maximum elevation of 252 meters. Apart from a few hilly areas, most of the Guningtou, Gukang, Mashan and Lieyu (Little Kinmen) areas are made up of flattish plateaus largely covered by laterite. Along the coasts are cliffs and terraces formed by seawater erosion of the granitic gneiss, as well as some well-developed beaches. The alternation of rocky and sandy shores creates rich and diverse coastal scenery.

●    The coastal scenery of Kinmen and Little Kinmen islands

The coastal scenery of KinmenIn some areas of Kinmen, the bedrock is exposed. In addition, there are some large, well-developed sand beaches. In other areas, laterite has been partially eroded. The landscapes, cliffs and terraces created by geological phenomena and erosion make Kinmen a natural classroom for teaching geology and topography.

Granite Coast●    Granite Coast
Kinmen coastline twists and turns. The eastern and southwestern coasts of Kinmen, as well as the area between Little Kinmen’s northeastern and southeastern sides, have been partially eroded by ocean waves forming cliffs and terraces. The geological structure and eroded sections are revealed, including rock veins in the granitic gneiss. These rock veins include pegmatite-containing granite, quartz and lamprophyre, etc. Thus, Kinmen is a great natural outdoor educational area.

●    Terrain
Due to the terrain, most of the rivers in the Kinmen area are really nothing more than small streams. They are short in length with little flow. Kinmen Island has seven rivers, In the eastern half of Kinmen island are the Jinsha, Hoshui, Shanwai and Chienpu Rivers. In the western half are the Hsiaching, Hsipao and Wujiang rivers. On Little Kinmen island are the Hsilu and Nantang Rivers. Mt. Taiwau is the source of most of the rivers.

●    Chinsha River

Due to the topography, Kinmen’s rivers are short with little flow. The Jinsha River is no exception. The source of the Jinsha River is the southwestern foothills of Mt Taiwu. The upper reaches are at a steeper slope, so the flow is fastest there. After a storm, large quantities of water swell the river, but during the dry season it almost dries up. Downstream, the river is wider. In the Shamei region, this murmuring river meanders westward to Jinsha Harbor, from where it flows into the ocean.

●    Lake Ci

Little Kinmen islandsLake Ci was once a marine bay. But, in 1969, the armed forces of the Republic of China reclaimed it and built dikes, creating a beautiful coastal lake. The forests and sand bars surrounding the lake are wintering bird habitats. The variety of bird species makes this one of best birdwatching sites on Kinmen. Looking southwest from the Ci Causeway, you can see Lieyu (Little Kinmen) and mainland China.
Last Updated on Saturday, 04 July 2009 09:12
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Update on:2017-11-24