Volume 5, Chapter 13: Defeat at Anze
Su Qing, hailing originally from Northern Han, enlisted in the army at a young age due to deep familial grievances. She possessed a resolve and daring that surpassed many heroes, accruing accomplishments until she became the head agent of the Northern Regional Department. She was always beloved by her subordinates. During the battle for Qinzhou, her history as a Fengyi Sect disciple was leaked. The Marquis of Chu did not find this disloyal and used her to command the entire army's scouts, allowing her to repeatedly perform great deeds.—Yong Dynastic Records, Biography of The Marquis of Cheng
Walking out of the cabin, the bright and beautiful sunlight of spring made Su Qing squint slightly. The delight at seeing sunlight again caused her to show a dim smile. Not far away, an urgent cry sounded. Su Qing raised her head and looked, catching sight of Huyan Shou standing there bewildered. He gazed at her as if he wanted to say something, but hesitated. A resolute and formidable man was actually extremely uncomfortable. Su Qing's heart stirred. Having spent much long in brothels, she knew that Huyan Shou had fallen in love. At this moment, Ruyue whispered to her, "Miss, that day, it was General Huyan who personally carried you back to the ship."
Although Su Qing was hard-hearted, she could not help blushing as she recalled the warm embrace she felt when she was unconscious. So it was this man who had held her. A warm feeling spread through her. However, after thinking some, Su Qing's face became cold and solemn. Although Huyan Shou was nominally a third-ranked general and his authority was below hers, as the vice commander of the Stalwart Tiger Guard and dispatched by the emperor to protect the Marquis of Chu, this man's future prospects were immeasurable. As for herself, although her position in the military was lofty, she was a subordinate of the Intelligence Management Section. In addition, with her secret exposed, even if the emperor did not investigate further because of her contributions, she would almost certainly be removed from her military rank. She couldn't care less about these matters. If she could witness Northern Han's fall, it did not matter if her future prospects were extinguished. However, it would not be good if she implicated others. Because of this, the two of them were definitely incompatible.
Having made up her mind, Su Qing impassively said, "Many thanks to General Huyan for the mercy of attending to me. This general is about to return to the army. We will meet again in the future."
Seeing that Su Qing's face was cold as ice, Huyan Shou felt as if the entirety of his being had frozen. However, thinking back to the scene from several days ago, he couldn't help being stirred. On that day, he had personally witnessed this woman's strongest and weakest moments. Her strong sentiments had left an indelible and unforgettable impression upon him. However, after thinking it over, not only was Su Qing beautiful, her martial arts skills were also spectacular, and her talents were outstanding. As for himself, he was only a lowly officer of the Imperial Guard. How was he a capable match for this kind of wonderful woman? He finally took a step back from Su Qing's emotionless gaze. Resisting his feelings of adoration with difficulty, he replied, "All war is dangerous. General Su, from this point forward, please be careful."
Smiling apathetically, Su Qing returned, "Many thanks for General's kind intentions. Su Qing will certainly treasure her life."
Su Qing was taken to shore of the Qin River by a skiff. Su Qing's subordinates were anxiously waiting there for her return. Seeing Su Qing come ashore, they all simultaneously kneeled and said, "Subordinates pay our respects to the general."
Seeing the faint joy in their solemnity, Su Qing knew that they had not become alienated. However, she was unwilling to reveal the frailties of her soul, only frostily stating, "We're going to Anze." Finished speaking, she took the reins of a horse handed her. Mounting, she took the lead and charged forth.
The scouts and spies exchanged looks. All of them were extremely overjoyed. To them, Su Qing's identity and past were unimportant. The important thing was that this woman had risked life and limb with them for years. This kind of camaraderie was something they valued greatly. Further, Su Qing's abilities filled them with admiration from the depths of their heart.
Standing before a porthole aboard the tower ships, I had a slight smile on my face as I observed what was happening outside. I inquired, "Xiaoshunzi, you have sparred with Su Qing. Why did you not discover that she had ties with Wen Ziyan?"
After falling silent for some time, Xiaoshunzi responded, "This servant has seen some indications for some time. Su Qing's swordsmanship was directly passed down from Wen Ziyan, and Wen Ziyan's swordsmanship was quite different from the other disciples of the Fengyi Sect. It was even more vicious and ruthless, ridding some of the ostentation. However, this servant recalled Wen Ziyan's firm resolution. Su Qing's temperament is quite similar to her master's. There is no way she would wallow in the mire1 with the Fengyi Sect. As a result, this servant did not openly try to uncover this matter."
Smiling, I asked, "Are you worried that I would seek to completely eliminate the Fengyi Sect?"
Xiaoshunzi dryly answered, "Young master probably wouldn’t go so far. However, it has always been in young master's nature to exploit someone thoroughly. General Su is not someone who can be so easily exploited or duped. This servant does not want to see the young master create a deep grievance with her. As a result, I did not reveal this matter."
I could not help somewhat flushing from embarrassment. Xiaoshunzi thoroughly understood my character. If I had learned of Su Qing's past early on, I would definitely have sent her to Southern Chu. At present, I truly felt that the restraints upon Southern Chu were too inadequate. Moreover, I would probably also keep many things from her. This was my usual practice when I employed people. Aside from my direct subordinates, I greatly disliked revealing the entirety of my plan to others. However, now that Su Qing's history was revealed in such a manner, I only had two choices before me—continue to employ or dismiss her.
As far as I was concerned, I did not have any doubts about Su Qing's loyalties. In addition, her status amongst the spies was quite impressive. As far as the lower-ranking officers and soldiers were concerned, they were far removed from the power struggles of the court. The connections between her and the Fengyi Sect were not enough for distrust to arise. The reason why those officers and soldiers were so shocked by the revelations about Su Qing's identity was because they were worried that Su Qing would be implicated. After all, acts of treason were punishable by the nine familial exterminations. Although they probably did not mind Su Qing's identity, they cared deeply about the purges in the rank and file of the military. After all, these purges would implicate many people, including themselves.
Pardoning Su Qing under these conditions was of benefit to Great Yong. However, this was only my opinion. The limits of my ability only ensured that Su Qing would not be dismissed as long as war raged in Qinzhou. The final decision would be left to the emperor. I could not guess how this would all play out. Although the emperor was usually magnanimous, he was ultimately the Son of Heaven. The Son of Heaven attached great importance to his throne and to the empire. At the time the Fengyi Sect plotted treason, Wen Ziyan had practically pursued the emperor to the border between life and death. Although the emperor had displayed his esteem for Wen Ziyan after her death, a dead enemy was the best enemy. If Wen Ziyan died, it was naturally of no importance. If Wen Ziyan survived, she would likely have been beheaded and her head displayed in public. As a result, Su Qing's fate had yet to be decided.
I looked at the secret memorial on the desk. In reality, I did not want to submit this petition at this moment. It was best to wait until the battle in Qinzhou ended. However, I would not assume that Xiahou Yuanfeng did not have any spies from the Bright Inspection Department within the military. In addition, the Stalwart Tiger Guard would also submit their petition to the emperor. Even if Huyan Shou had been clearly caught within the snare of love, it was better to report this matter as soon as possible than to conceal it. I could at least preserve Su Qing's life. The woman's heroism surpassed many men's, leaving me in great admiration. Even Xiaoshunzi was of mind to protect her, not to speak of myself.
At this moment, the dazed Huyan Shou walked in. He said, "There is a report from His Imperial Highness, the Prince of Qi, stating that the Anze garrison is extremely fierce and tough. Moreover, they have employed the navy. His Imperial Highness wishes to mobilize the fleet to provide assistance. In addition, His Imperial Highness asks daren to go to the army center to observe the battle."
I frowned slightly. Why was Northern Han resisting so heavily at Anze? According to reason, the fortifications at Qinyuan2 were high and heavy, making it easily defended and difficult to attack. In addition, it had a stable supply line. It was clear that the size of the Northern Han army was smaller than the Yong army's. Rather than wasting its limited strength like this, would it not be best to lure the enemy in deep and spring an ambush? It was best to cling stubbornly to the defenses at Qinyuan to reduce the Yong army's strength before using elite cavalry to fight the decisive battle. This was the most reasonable method of handling the Yong invasion. However, as I could not think this through, I temporarily set it aside. In any case, the Prince of Qi and company were all veteran commanders of the battlefield. They should be able to see through this suspicious fact and would definitely be on their guard. Gazing at the luxuriant vegetation of the mountains, I thought to myself, Northern Han is truly a tough bone to gnaw. I hope that my strategy will go off without a hitch. Of course, it was best if there was no need for it.
Staring with cool detachment at the thronging Yong army below the walls, Duan Wudi's expression was solemn. He frequently issued orders to maneuver the town's garrison to ensure that the defense was as steady as Mount Tai. The preparations made within Anze were quite thorough. In addition, there were abundant troops within. Combined with Duan Wudi's strict leadership, the defenses were quite tight. However, this was not enough to alleviate the exhaustion on his mind. It had already been four days. The Yong army had a vast numerical advantage, allowing them to rotate their forces to besiege the town. Their tempo was strict and fluent as they besieged the town around the clock. No matter how good he was at defending fortified positions, it was quite difficult for him to continue. The hail of arrows both on and below the walls were nonstop. The sounds of catapults, bowstrings, and crossbow mechanisms practically did not cease. Falling logs and boulders, boiling oil and water had ravaged the façade of the walls of Anze. At some locations were revealed the clay behind the bricks of the wall. If this continued, it would only be a matter of time before Anze fell.
Duan Wudi tiredly massaged his temples. After being poisoned last time, his constitution had taken a blow and he tired quite easily. Duan Wudi forcibly braced himself and gazed down from the battlements. At the center of the Yong army was an azure damask silk canopy. There was the chief commander of the Yong army, the Prince of Qi, Li Xian. He wore a set of golden armor and a red brocade battle gown. The prince was seated and deep in happy conversation with a scholar in azure robes. This kind of scene was a greater blow to morale than the interminable siege of Anze.
After watching with indifference for some time, Duan Wudi brandished his command flag. The Northern Han navy rushed out of Anze's western water gate, going around to the southern side where the Yong army was attacking. A burst of crossbow mechanisms clanked. The Yong army besieging Anze had prepared for this far in advance. Wielding their shields, they took shelter from the rain of crossbow bolts. However, with this, the siege naturally weakened. Anze had once again repelled a round of violent attacks from the Yong army. When the Yong fleet's warships appeared, they found it impossible to halt the withdrawal of the Northern Han navy. When the Zezhou fleet first arrived yesterday, Duan Wudi had used catapults to attack and sink one of the Yong warships. From that point forward, Yong warships did not dare to approach the water gate of Anze.
After seeing this Yong unit retreat and another unit slowly close, Duan Wudi breathed a sigh of relief, ordering the soldiers on the battlements to be relieved by other soldiers. The soldiers on the battlements had fought for half a day. It was time for them to rest. Duan Wudi raised his eyes and looked to the north. He thought, Why haven't the Grand General's reinforcements arrived yet? The Grand General said that it would be good enough for me to hold out for five days. However, today is already the fourth day.
Just as he was beginning to feel apprehensive, a bodyguard hurriedly ran over to report, "General, a messenger has arrived from the Grand General, asking that General act in accordance with the plan."
Finished speaking, the bodyguard handed over a letter. Duan Wudi rapidly opened the letter. After reading its contents, ecstasy bloomed within and a smile that could not be hidden appeared. Staring down at the Yong army below the walls, an icy killing intent appeared in Duan Wudi's eyes.
At this moment, I was quite uneasy below the walls of Anze. Something was clearly off. Duan Wudi was not a fool and Long Tingfei was not an idiot. With Anze's current situation, it was impossible for them to stop the Yong army's advance. If this were Qinyuan, it would be impossible to capture it without a month or two. As for Anze, although Duan Wudi's leadership was solid, the width and height of Anze's walls made it impossible to be tightly defended to wait for the arrival of reinforcements. Why did they not retreat back to Qinyuan? Between Anze and Qinyuan were a chain of mountain ridges and rolling hills. If they retreated step by step, based upon available fortifications and strongholds, it would be enough to delay us for at least a month. In reality, I had no intentions of using some cunning methods to attack Anze, let alone Qinyuan. These sieges would have to rely upon a forced attack by our soldiers.
Gazing at Anze, which was on the verge of collapse and still continued to stand upright, I found it difficult to hide my misgivings. I could not help asking, "Your Imperial Highness, has Su Qing relayed any intelligence?"
Frowning, the Prince of Qi answered, "Not yet. However, we received another batch of supplies yesterday. In addition, they delivered several Divine Armed Bows. We should be able to use them when we attack tomorrow."
I lightly nodded my head before gazing off into the distance. With the sun setting in the west, the color of the sky grew yellow. I had no intention of watching the siege continue into night. I hope that I will be able to see Anze fall tomorrow. Why has there been no news from Su Qing? I could not help coming up with a bad possibility.
In a set of ecru clothes, Su Qing stealthily advanced in the wilderness. Ever since she had returned to the battlefield, she had discovered that something was off. Although the Northern Han army had stopped the Yong army at Anze, Northern Han had arranged for numerous agents to intercept all Yong scouts that passed through the Anze perimeter. However, using her martial arts and familiarity with the terrain, Su Qing had snuck into this area. Fortunately, there was an endless stream of refugees who were passing through, having not yet completely retreated to Qinyuan. The oddness of the situation made Su Qing temporarily suspend plans of sowing dissension within Anze's garrison. After all, if unexpected happened, Anze would fall. As for her duty, it was to ensure that nothing unexpected occurred.
Fully employing her strafing movements, Su Qing flitted her way to a small hillside that was heavily defended. With the color of her clothes nearly the matching the soil and withered grass, she had finally found a suitable location to observe the situation. Behind the hill was the Qin River that ran through Qinzhou. An appalled look suddenly appeared on Su Qing's face. She had discovered what she was looking for.
It was a dam. There was nothing strange beneath it, but on top were drainage outlets. The Qin River passed through these outlets and rapidly flowed downriver. Behind the dam and connected to the Qin River was a large lake that spanned several li.3
Numerous emotions tumbled through Su Qing. In her memories, this lake was not this size before. She saw traces of fire on the perimeter of the lake, the result of Northern Han troops melting the ice during the cold of winter before digging this large lake. They had used the rising water levels that came with spring to amass the reservoir. As for the dam, its design was quite ingenious. As long as the lake had enough water stored up, the Qin River would continue to flow. With this, no one downriver would be able to notice the changes in the water level. After all, compared to the water that flowed via the Qin River, the quantity in the lake wasn't that apparent. However, if the drainage pipes of the dam were sealed for even one day and the dam was destroyed, by using the terrain and the power of the water, it would be enough to form a flood that could destroy an army. Twenty li4 downriver was Anze, where the Yong army was battling the Northern Han army. Once a flood rushed downriver, the Yong army would definitely be inundated. Behind the protection of Anze's walls, the Northern Han army would not suffer heavy losses.
Restraining the shock that she felt, Su Qing slowly withdrew. Her movements were extremely slow. She did not want to leave any signs of her presence at this crucial moment. Her luck had been quite good. Several days ago, this location was defended by a massive force. Now with battle joined and the dam about to be used, there weren't many Northern Han agents present in the area. The majority of them had gone to gather military intelligence or eliminate the spies among the refugees. This was a lapse by Xiao Tong. Xiao Tong expected the best scout within the Yong army, Su Qing, to be in custody and awaiting death. As for the other scouts, none of them had the ability to penetrate the heavy security layers to arrive at this location.
At last returning to her hideout, Su Qing did some calculations. Smiling bitterly, she used all of her strength to sprint to Anze. There was nothing she could do about it. There were numerous Northern Han falcons present, making it impossible to deliver a carrier pigeon. As for the other scouts, their successful return couldn't be depended upon. As a result, she could only rush headlong, as though her life depended on it. Although it was only a short twenty li,4 since she had to break through the heavy security, Su Qing did not have any excessive expectation that she would return to Anze very quickly. She could only pray silently, hoping that she could return to Anze before the Northern Han army utilized the dam.
Below the walls of Anze, the Prince of Qi was raging as he gazed at the water gate on the western side of Anze. Today, the Northern Han navy had repeatedly sallied forth. He found them to be truly irksome. Seeing that noon was approaching and there was no sign of the town falling, he could not help but steel his heart. The Prince of Qi issued orders for two of the naval units that had arrived at Anze to actively attack to ensure that the Northern Han navy was trapped within the town. However, to his surprise, with the newness of the Northern Han navy, it was actually cut off from its retreat by the combined attacks due to its inexperience, and began to fall back upriver. Having met their objective, the Yong fleet did not bother to pursue, instead blockading Anze's western water gate, using the catapults and ballistae on their decks to launch an attack on the western wall of Anze. Large boulders smashed down on and several ballista volleys shot towards the battlements. This attack was enough to cause the Anze garrison to experience a sharp drop in morale.
Seeing this scene, the entire Yong army was overjoyed, seizing the initiative and doing their utmost to attack. Numerous ladders and siege towers approached the wall. Soldiers in azure and black armor began to appear on the battlements. Delighted, Li Xian pointed to the battlements and said, "Were it not for the strategic terrain of Anze with its back to a cliff and with the Qin River to its west, we would not have required so much time to take it."
I smiled softly, feeling increasingly apprehensive inside. This was all too easy. What kind of person was Duan Wudi? I had read over the intelligence relating to him. It should be easy for him to defend Anze for more than a fortnight. Yesterday, the Prince of Qi had spoken of his intent to capture Anze today. I had simply treated it as fantasy. However, today, although Duan Wudi's keenness radiated, he had lost yesterday's brilliance. It was enough for him to defend the town. It made no sense that he had sallied forth. In addition, while the mistake by the Northern Han navy was reasonable, it unavoidably made me suspicious.
I gazed at Anze, deep in thought. If the Northern Han army truly had a malicious agenda, then how would they act? The Northern Han army was outnumbered. The siege did not have any lapses. No matter what methods the enemy tried to employ, it would be impossible for our army to suffer heavy losses, except for the mercilessness of the fire and the flood. Thinking of this, I could not help shivering inwardly. How had I not thought of this before? It was probably because I did not have any thoughts about victory.
I hurriedly commanded a subordinate to bring me maps of the area fifty li5 around Anze. After studying the maps carefully, my eyes fell upon the Qin River. The terrain in this area was precipitous. If water was held upriver, it would be possible to drown the Yong army. Although, according to my calculations, this project would be awfully large and would be impossible to complete in ten to fifteen days. In addition, beforehand, Qinzhou was frozen by the cold of winter. Employing this method was quite difficult. However, everyone knew of Yong's designs upon Northern Han and would not preclude Northern Han from accomplishing something seemingly impossible. Although I had discovered some clues, I could not help knitting my brows. Without evidence, how could I get the Prince of Qi to retreat and convince all of the generals? It would not be easy even if I just wanted to convince the Prince of Qi.
While I was hesitating, I saw the dust kicked up by horse approaching from a distance. The individual had a flag in the fashion of the house of the Prince of Qi in their hands. That was a token used by a scout that prevented anyone from attempting to obstruct their passage. The Yong troops before the rider originally wished to block the rider's passage. However, seeing the banner in the person's hand, all of them let withdrew. That individual rushed to the army's center. Dismounting, said person quickly kneeled and reported, "Your Imperial Highness, Army Supervisor daren, the Northern Han army has built a dam at the Flying Cloud Gorge.6 They likely seek to release a flood today!"
Although I had already discovered this, I still could not help letting out a cry of surprise. Looking carefully, I discovered that the scout was Su Qing. However, her appearance was haggard and her clothing was in shreds. On her arms were wounds bound with strips of clothing. It was clear that she had experienced untold hardships in order to return.
Hearing her report, Li Xian was also greatly alarmed. He suddenly rose to his feet and asked, "Is this the truth?"
Not waiting for Su Qing's response, I also solemnly stood and answered, "Your Imperial Highness, the Northern Han army's situation is strange. This subject believes that this is the truth."
A decisive character, Li Xian glanced at Su Qing before glancing at the maps in my hands. He resolutely ordered, "Right now, we don't know when they're going to release the flood. Our army cannot retreat carelessly. Xuan Song, you will command the officers and soldiers besieging the town into a slow withdrawal. I will personally command my bodyguards and serve as the rearguard. Once you have withdrawn from the banks of the Qin River, you must not be remiss. Command the fleet to follow the river down as fast as possible. Suiyun, you must not follow the fleet. Have the Stalwart Tiger Guard escort you to someplace nearby to temporarily hide."
At this moment, there was no time for me to be courteous. Xiaoshunzi helped me mount a horse. In a low voice, I whispered, "Your Imperial Highness, you must not take any risks. Later, there will be a situation that will require Your Imperial Highness's presence. By learning of the enemy's crafty scheme beforehand, it won't be impossible for us to reverse the situation even if we suffer heavily."
Pride flashed across Li Xian's eyes, as he replied, "I am not someone who doesn't know the gravity of the situation. I will not casually lose my life. You will go ahead. Once the army has begun to withdraw, I will also depart at the appropriate time. If I leave right now, I'm afraid the army will collapse. General Su, you are familiar with the terrain here. Go protect Jiang daren and ensure that we link up again once the floodwaters have receded."
Su Qing promptly nodded her head and remounted her horse. With this, my guard of over a hundred riders left the battlefield. None of us were a part of the army at Zezhou. Although our departure was abrupt, it did not garner the attention of the army's officers and soldiers. As we left, I heard a bugle horn blare behind me. It seemed like the Prince of Qi was reorganizing the army in preparation for the retreat. I prayed to myself that the Prince of Qi and the army could retreat safely. After all, if we suffered a calamitous defeat here, it would be impossible for my subsequent arrangements to be realized.
Once we had gotten twenty li from Anze, a loud and rumbling sound like that of rolling thunder crashed. I cursed mentally. It seemed like the Northern Han army had released the flood. In this short span of time, it was impossible to know if the Prince of Qi could escape safely. However, I did not have the chance to worry about the matters over there and could only allow my horse to gallop forward powerfully. Who knew how far the floodwaters would go? The farther I got, the better. As I mentally cursed Long Tingfei and Duan Wudi, I also cursed why I had not thought that the enemy would use a flood to attack. I spurred my horse to its greatest speed and galloped along. Fortunately, I had practiced my horsemanship during these days in the army, or else it would have been difficult for me to escape right now.
At this moment, the lands below the walls of Anze had become a hell on earth. Following the Qin River, the floodwaters deluged downriver. At the beginning, it was only a white line on the horizon. However, it wasn't long before it showed its true malevolent identity. The waves of the turbid floodwaters were several zhang7 tall, almost like a startled ferocious beast as it raced downstream wantonly. Between the Heavens and the Earth, the sounds of rolling thunder boomed, practically capable of rupturing a listener's eardrums. However, all those who looked up could see that the sky was clear.
When the floodwaters arrived, they brushed past the western side of Anze. In an instant, Anze was surrounded by the water. Although the western water gate had been sealed long ago, the floodwaters still rushed into Anze via the port, allowing the surging tide to wreak havoc within the town. Duan Wudi had long ago ordered all of the soldiers and civilians within the town to retreat to high ground and had prepared several openings to allow the water to flow out of the town. In fact, he had made several openings in the town's walls, only leaving behind their brick outer layer. Wherever the flood passed, large breaches in the walls ruptured and the floodwaters rushed out of the town. Even with this, Duan Wudi was still apprehensive, observing the widespread flooding from his position on the battlements. He had no desire to see Anze's soldiers and civilians buried alongside the Yong army. In addition, the Yong army had somehow learned of the flood beforehand and had actually begun to retreat. If he had not used the fire beacons to pass the news, the floodwaters would likely have only flooded Anze.
The Anze garrison could rely upon the walls of the town to scrape by. In comparison, the Yong army outside had suffered disastrous losses. Although the Prince of Qi had received the news in a timely fashion and ordered the cavalry to mount twos for the retreat, the Yong army had forty thousand horsemen and fifty thousand infantrymen before Anze. Although they had suffered some losses these past several days and the cavalry did their utmost to carry the infantry away, there was still five thousand Yong foot soldiers who had to retreat on foot. No matter how quick their two legs could run, it was impossible to escape the floodwaters. The majority of them were non-swimmers who did not know how to swim. Practically all of them perished amidst the floodwaters. The losses suffered by the Yong fleet were even heavier. Under the waves of the flood, the majority of the ships sank. Fortunately, the majority of the sailors and marines aboard knew how to swim. Due to their superb swimming skills and the flotsam, the majority of them survived. It was quite unfortunate that nearly all of the warships of the Zezhou fleet and almost all of the Yong army's supplies were essentially lost to the Qin River.
Footnotes:同流合污, tongliuhewu - idiom, lit. to wallow in the mire with somebody; fig. to associate with undesirable elements, follow others' bad example 沁源, qinyuan - lit. the source of the Qin; so named as the head of the Qin River within its boundaries; now a county that is located in Changzhi Prefecture, Shanxi Several kilometers (a few miles) About 11 kilometers (around 7 miles) 27 kilometers (about 17 miles) 飞云峡, feiyunxia - lit. flying cloud gorge Several meters (several yards)