At 8:00am, on August 01, 2011, we set off from Xiahe Civil Aviation Hotel in Xiahe Countyfor Langmusi. It was a 230km drive which, later on, took us about 4 hours.
Our bus driver turned out to be a very cautious person keeping a stead driving speed of 80km per hour all the way. On the way, we stopped two times at Gas Sations for using toilets, adding up to the total time of 4 hours for the whole trip along the National Highway No.213.
For the 230km road trip, we drove along the National Highway No.213 passing by Hezuo City, Luqu County, experiencing mesmerising views of alpine meadows, grassslands, grazing yaks and sheep, and Tibetan living houses, unfolding a “water colour” picture of the pristine life in Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.
Our Xiahe Langmusi road trip can be divided into 4 sections: Xiahe – Wang Ge Er Tang Town 30km, Wang Ge Er Tang – Hezhou 32km, Hezhou – Luqu 79km and Luqu – Langmusi 90km. The road sightseeing in the later two sections are beyond words.
Xiahe – Wang Ge Er Tang ( 30km), a special road
This is the only non-National Highway section for the 230km road trip. The 30km road is a special road forking from the main road National Highway 213 at Wang Ge Er Tang and leading toXiahe. Parallelled by Daxia River, the road is nestled in a valley bound by the mountains with good views.
This is the only non-National Highway section for the 230km road trip.
Parallelled by Daxia River, the road is nestled in a valley bound by the mountains with good views.
Wang Ge Er Tang – Hezuo ( 32km ), along National Highway No.213
We entered the National Highway 213 at Wang Ge Er Tang Toll Gate starting our long trip along the national highway.
This 32km section road was a transit area between the loesss plateau and Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau. The Tao River originating from Luqu County runs parallelled by the highway. We felt our coach climbing up all the way to our destionation Langmusi on the edge of Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau, higher and higher.
We entered the National Highway 213 at Wang Ge Er Tang Toll Gate.
The Tao River originating from Luqu County runs parallelled by the highway.
We felt our coach climbing up all the way to our destionation Langmusi.
Hezuo – Luqu ( 79km ), along National Highway No.213
Now we were inside the jurisdiction area of Hezhou, is the capital city of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gansu Province.
It is located at the southeast fringe of Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau in the cross-border areas of Qinghai, Sichuan and Gansu provinces. The national highway No.213 runs through the city of Hezuo, which is 62km west of Xiahe, 260 km south of Lanzhou and 860km north of Chengdu with a average altitude of over 3000 meters.
Now we were inside the jurisdiction area of Hezhou.
We were passing by Hezuo Milariba Buddha Pavilion.
We were driving through the city center of Hezou. White clouds, blue sky, green alpine meadows and grasslands with wildflowers
A pradise on earth
Some people couldn’t help stopping here taking pictures.
A local Tibetan house
Yaks dotted on the road sie grassland
A group of yaks were wandering on the highway.
Luqu – Langmusi ( 90km ), along National Highway No.213
Now we were entering Luqu County. Luqu is a county under the administration of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gansu Province. It has a population of over 30,000 with 84% being Tibetans.
A large part of Luqu county is at the sea level between 2900 and 4287 with the yearly average temperature at 2.3 degree and the sunshine time of 2222 – 2351 hours. Luqu County is about 78km away from Hezuo, the capital city of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gansu Province. Langmusi Town is under the administration of Luqu, 90km to the southeast of Luqu.
We were driving through a small village called Gaxu.
Again white clouds, blue sky, green alpine meadows and grassland wildflowers.
It is amazing!
We were passing by Gahai Lake. Gahai Lake is the largest fresh water lake in Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, an important wetland in the east of Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau. Gahai Lake is a part of the National Gahai Zecha Natural Reserve. Gahai Lake is under the administration of Luqu County, which is situated 90km north of Langmmsi and 260km south of Lanzhou.
Gahai Lake is surrounded by the mountains with an altitude of 3480. Gahai Lake has rich water resources with water coming from three streams from the nearbye mountains as well as the underground sprinsg. It is a pefect habitat for over 100 migrant birds like swans, black-neck cranes…
Now we were passing through the one street of Langmusi. Langmusi” in Chinese literally “Langmu Temple”. But actually it is the name of the small town bordering Gansu in the north and Sichuan in the south. “Langmu” in Tibetan means “Fairy”. The legend has it that once a fairy was discoverd in a cave near the village.
With a population of over 3,000, the town is now mainly inhabited by Tibetans, Han and hui. The town of Langmusi is only composed of one main street with a streem known as “White Dragon River” passing by the street. The area of north of the streem belongs to Gansu Province while the south to Sichuan.
The rual town is nestled in a valley between the north and south hills along steep grassy meadows, evergreen forests and snow-capped peaks. Langmusi has two Tibetan Temples and one Muslim Mosque. They are:
Sertri Gompa – The temple is located on northern hill ( on Gansu side ).
Kirti Gompa – The temple is on the southern hill (Sichuan side)
Hui Mosque – located close to the Sichuan side temple near the enterance gate to Kirti Temple