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Mount Gongga

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Mount Gongga Introduction

In Tibetan language, "Gong" means "snow", while "Ga" means "white". Mount Gongga stands across Kangding, Luding, Shimian and Jiulong, the four counties in western Sichuan Province. It covers an area of about 60 kilometers from south to north and 30 kilometers from east to west. With the highest peak of 7,556 meters above sea level, Mount Gongga is the highest mountain in Sichuan and enjoys the fame as "the King of Sichuan Mountains ". As one of the four holy mountains and the temple of Heruka (one of the top five Buddha's warriors in Tibetan Buddhism), it also has a prominent position in Tibetan Buddhism. People often describe the climate and vegetation in extreme high mountains as "four seasons in one mountain". As for Mount Gongga, there are "four season in a place", and "four seasons in a day". When you drive into Mount Gongga area, you could see tropical plants such as cactus and palm trees in subtropical valleys like Dadu River, and catch the vision of vegetation and spectacular scenery in Frigid Zone when you arrive at mountains at altitude of more than 5000 meters.

Mount Gongga

Mount Gongga is located at the eastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau, between Dadu River and Yalong River, and is part of the Hengduan mountainous region. As one of China's well developed maritime glaciers, Mount Gongga plays a very important role in mountaineering and scientific research, and it is also a famous place for climbers and explorers. Mount Gongga scenic area consists of Hailuogou Glacier, Mugecuo Lake, Wuxuhai Lake and Gongga South Slope, which cover more than 10,000 square kilometers. There are about 145 icy peaks at altitude of 5000-6000 meters. The famous peaks in Mount Gongga include: Zhongshan Peak (at altitude of 6886 meters), Aidejia Peak (at altitude of 6618 meters), and Haizishan Peak (at altitude of 6070 meters). As the concentrated area of high peaks in Hengduan Mountains, Mount Gongga owns more than 20 high peaks at altitude of more than 6000 meters.

Mount Gongga

In the scenic area, there are more than ten plateau lakes, including Mugecuo, Wuxuhai, Renzhonghai and Bawanghai. Some of them are at the foot of glaciers and some are surrounded by forests, all of which keep their original natural features. There are also some hot springs here, of which the most famous are Hailuogou Hot Spring. The temperature of the hot springs always lies between 40℃ (104℉) and 80℃ (176℉). In addition, there are several Tibetan Buddhism lamaseries in the scenic area, such as Gongga Monastery and Tagong Monastery.

Mount Gongga 

Looking from distance, the mountain seems like appearing on indistinct boundless snow sea with solemn and mystery, which cause people's respect easily. Especially in fine days, the magnificent view that the mountain is dyed by rosy clouds can't be imagined except for a real experience. Because of its high altitude, the climbers should make full preparations before they start. According to previous experience, most climbers start from the northwest ridge route. The rocks in Mount Gongga are granite in light green. The perennial snow-covered peak is like a platform, with an area of ​​about 70 square meters. It is the changeable climate and the steepness in Mount Gongga that make it extreme difficult to climb.  

Mount Gongga 

This area belongs to the temperate plateau climate. The annual rainy season is from June to October, and the dry season is from November to May next year. The annual rainfall is 800-900mm, mostly concentrated in March, July, August and September. In summer, the cloud cover is large, making a large temperature difference day and night. In areas at 6000 meters high above sea level, the lowest temperature could be -20℃. While in dry seasons, the temperature is even milder than other regions at the same latitude. The hottest days appear in April and May. The best time for mountaineering is the alternating period between the dry and wet seasons. From bottom to top, there are 7 climate zones in Mount Gongga: subtropical zone, warm temperate zone, cold temperate zone, sub-frigid zone, Frigid Zone, cold zone, snow and ice zone. In such special geographical environment and climatic conditions, there develops multi-level plants and unique natural landscapes. In the high and steep Mount Gongga, the snow does not melt perennially; while the low altitude areas are heavily forested with almost all kinds of plant species from subtropical zone to mountain cold zone. There are more than 4880 species of plants and more than 400 species of wild animals, among which 400 rare species of plants and 28 rare species of animals are under national protection. In the eastern valley, there left a lot of old plants and old animals which are also known as the "living fossils".

Mount Gongga 

As one of the places where maritime glaciers originate, Mount Gongga is well-known for its 159 glaciers which cover more than 390 square kilometers. The most famous glaciers are Hailuogou Glacier No.1 and Yanzigou Glacier, with ice that can be 150 to 300 meters thick. The largest is Hailuogou Glacier No.1 at 6 kilometers long and 0.4 to 0.7 kilometers wide, which is believed to have formed 1,600 years ago. The large ice waterfalls all reach more than 1,000 meters high. Due to the intense activities of glaciers in Mount Gongga, the lowest end of some glaciers could extend to as far as 2600 meters above sea level. Formed in the glacier's movement, the glacier fracture zone is more than 100 meters long, 5 to 10 meters deep, and 0.5 to 2 meters wide, which looks like jade and crystal. During the melting of glaciers, there forms a magnificent spectacle with a mix of ice lakes, ice tables, ice caves, ice bridges and ice mushrooms.