When I woke up in Mato or Maduo and looked through the window, I saw snowflurries blowing almost horizontally through the street. Outside, a fierce cold awaited me, and even though I saw a vague sun coming through the thick clouds after breakfast, it seemed unwise to visit Ngoring Lake. So I decided to leave the visit for later and continued to Jyekundo in the south. When, almost a week later, I was on my way to the lake, I was very happy with my decision. The sun was shining in a brightly blue sky, and the trip to the shore of Ngoring Tso was amazing. Barren landscapes, in which frosty rivers lay like dead, white snakes.
I saw herdes of Tibetan gazelles leaving behind small clouds of dust, and when I got out of the car to better enjoy the landscape, the cold surprised me. Despite the sun, the conditions seemed inhospitable; the dead animals, birds and dogs, I saw on the way, reinforced the feeling. Because of the animals, the trip to the lake seemed like a safari, but when I finally reached the shore, I was dumbstruck. In front of my eyes, a solid mass of ice stretched until the eye could see. The wind coming over the ice was bearable even at this altitude of almost 4,500 metres, and I went for a walk on the pebbly beach of the lake.
I tried to walk on the ice; the surface seemed very strong, if not solid. But the ice was old, the surface not smooth at all - after all, it was almost springtime. I could hear the ice working, moaning, cracking, and when I walked to the edgde of the lake, where the very young Yellow River flows into the landscape, I saw a small stretch of water, gratefully used by a lot of birds. I loved just listening to the lake, which did not seem to be silent. As we drove on the dirt road around the lake, up to hills with spectacular views over the enormous ice surface, I wondered how long it would take to actually melt. Apparently, the lake is covered by ice from September to June. It was not easy to imagine that millions of people downstream would use the water coming from this region to survive.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Ngoring Lake (China). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Ngoring Lake.
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