Fog Dancing over the Lake
By Gao Denyi
Prof. of Atmosphere Physics
Institute of Atmosphere Physics, Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing
Deputy Leader of China Great Canyon Expeditions (1980's)
One of the 3 scientists who discovered the Great Canyon
|Prof. Gao Denyi
As a famous atmosphere physicist, research on the
atmosphere of the pole & ocean regions, he was the first scientist in
China investigated North Pole, South Pole and the 3rd Pole (Qing-Tibet
Plateau) of the Earth. Vice-President of China Scientific Expedition
Painting-like view of Laniao Lake
The valleys of Yalung Tsangpu River in East Tibet have over 2,000 mm rainfall each year. In June 1983, we went to Tibet for the research work on its atmosphere conditions.
After 10 days drove on the
Sichuan-Tibet motorway, we (8 members) approached Laniao Lake - our first observation
It was June, but it was snowing. Our vehicle went into deep valleys, jumping up and down. I was almost sleeping. Suddenly a thunder sound, a huge rock fell down from the mountain into the valley, just a few meters in front of us.
After another turn, I looked out from the window, I could not believe my eyes; what a beautiful lake, The green water, t the forests, the snow mountains and the white clouds around it. "Look! those pretty islands in the lake."
Atmosphere Observation Stations
We built our Atmosphere Observation Station on a
half-island, about 5 km from the start of Peron Tsangpu River. An idea
We also delivered several types of atmosphere observe
balloons, recorded the atmosphere temperature, moisture, pressure, and
wind etc data from the lake level (4,000m elevation) to 12,000m
At the end of Peron Tsangpu River, we established another station. Use the same method and schedule to investigate its atmosphere data. The amount of water vapour through there was 400 gm / cm / sec. Slightly higher that its originate region.
Adventure in "Tiger
Then we decided to build our 3rd station at the join point of Peron Tsangpu River and Egu tsangpu River - Tongmai. When the team were moving to there, I , Ye and driver Zhang had to go Lhasa to get more equipments.
On the way back from Lhasa to Tongmai, there was a famous section of the road called "Tiger Mouth". it was the most difficult part of the road. We met a large rock fall there, 20 military tracks were block there. I saw the soldiers had to push the track over the hill of the rocks, one by one, for 4 hours.
It was 10pm already, our jeep
started to climb the rock hill. Driver little Zhang used the maximum force
to reach the top of the rock hill and now it's time to go down, but the
jeep was on a 30 degree angle, its head light towards the sky, driver
could not see the road.
Another 1 km, on a S turn of the
road, our jeep suddenly stopped, a strong head light came from the
opposite direction. A large track stopped in front of us, a distance of
less than 2 meters. We both side went down to the road, nobody spoke, but
looked at the dangerous situation. It was raining and dark, in this narrow
valley road, it was very difficult to find a place to allow the vehicles
At midnight, we completed the last 20 km travel (it seems lasted almost a whole century). Our colleagues at Tongmai welcome us warmly.
Our Tongmai Station establishes. It was for measuring the wet vapour transportation (towards the interior Tibet Plateau) in the top area of the Great Canyon of Yalung Tsangpu River. The result showed that it reached as high as 500 gm / cm / sec.
The Mystery of Egu Lake
From Tongmai, we moved to Egu
Lake. It was located in the middle of Egu Tsangpu River. With an
elevation of 2,200 m only, this region appeared like a sub-tropical zone.
Tibetan people built tea and fruit farms here. The dense fog dancing over
the lake all the time, It changes its shape, direction, and it was
reflected in the lake.
This was the 4th Station of our
expedition, and we delivered 90 atmosphere balloons. From the rich data we
knew that in this region the income water vapour was the highest one - 750
gm /cm /sec.
Prisoners of Egu Lake
During our stay in Egu lake, another big mud-rock glacier damaged the motorway. We could not go out to get foods and was unable to communicate with our head quarter of expedition.
Fortunately the nature provided foods , we went to the forests collecting mushrooms, medicinal plants etc, to exchange foods with Tibetan people. It was a very interesting experience.
The beautiful Egu Lake kept us for a whole month. I would never forget its beauty.
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Adventure Stories in The Great Canyon
Fight King Cobra
Adventure in Glaciers
Fog dance over the lake
Flying on String Bridges
Wander in the richest Fungi Kingdom
Photo Gallery of the Great Canyon
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