The International Steam Pages


Shibanxi Magic - Bago Heritage - Huangcun Museum Underground

Click here for the main Shibanxi Holiday 2009 page.

Click here for the introduction to Bagou Heritage.


The mining museum charges serious money for admission, CNY 50 per person, with a minimum charge of CNY 150 for a group. I confess we went down initially, more in a spirit of helping subsidise what we thought was a worthwhile venture than because we thought it would be fair value. However, we spent well over an hour underground and returned well satisfied with what we had seen and would strongly recommend it to future visitors here. Fortunately, our visit coincided with that of the Head of the Jiayang Power Company, Mr. Fan Gang, who was entertaining the head of Qianwei County. He kindly asked Mr. Zhong and Mr. Yuan of the Public Relations Department to accompany us on our visit and they  proved knowledgeable and helpful guides, supplementing the standard excellent bilingual signs and, of course, Yuehong acted as interpreter where necessary. I haven't grown a beard, that's my old friend Peter Nettleship, with Mr. Fan and Yuehong.

Below is a map of the underground system, visitors/miners enter middle right and the other shaft (used to remove coal formerly) is near the middle top.

There are some 276 steps to descend, initially they parallel a railway incline (600mm), at a Y junction half way down is a representation of how coal was removed in pre-mechanisation days.

According to our guides, the whole tunnel complex was in a remarkably good state of repair, considering it had been abandoned for some 20 years and needed very little work done on it.

Equipment from small private mines is represented by this 300mm gauge skip:

This sign is couched in military style language and encourages safety, 
the mine's recent accident record would be entered on it:

This is the main ventilation shaft:

Needless to say a large mine used something more a bit larger than this:

Hence the need for this historic photograph:

Drilling into rock below a seam:

Traditional mining in a smaller mine:

Reconstruction of a small 300mm gauge underground mine

Reconstruction of a small 300mm gauge underground mine

Arched section with slogan (ca 1960s) exhorting the workers:
'Grab the revolution and increase production'

Thanks to a good pumping system, the mine is remarkably
dry but these small stalactites are growing in one part.

Model showing automatic unloading

I have seen a similar system on the electrified narrow gauge at Nanpiao 

The base of the main shaft:

Lady coal miner in action:


Click here for the introduction to Bagou Heritage.


Rob Dickinson

Email: webmaster@internationalsteam.co.uk