Saturday, August 22, 2009

Mt. Zhara Lhatse

This post shall give a short introduction of one of the most sovereign mountains of the area between Gyarong and Kham: Mt. Zhara Lhatse (5820m)
(in Chinese: Yala Shenshan)

He pops out behind the rolling hills of the Tagong Grassland and the eastern part of the Tibetan High Plateau. But actually he still belongs to
the rough and bizarre mountain range of Danba/Gyarong. He appears very sovereign from all perspectives, as he stands quite separate from other high mountains of this range. This makes him to the most sacred mountain of Tagong and Bamei.

This picture was taken from Garthar Gompa - a big monastery (chin. Huiyuan Si). It lies about 25km to the NW.

From the same spot I also had a great view of Minya Konka which is more than 100km away. When the sight is clear, it is unmistakably that these two mountains are the protectors of Eastern Kham and Minyak Area.

When approaching Zhara Lhatse from the North, you can appreciate some great views into the side valleys. Lots of hot springs are scattered in their bottoms.

This is a glimpse of the huge glacier on the east face of Mt. Zhara Lhatse

The Gelugpa (= Yellow Hats) Monastery named Garthar Gompa is the biggest monastery in this area. Recently, monks and local people are badly concerned about present matters of Mt. Zhara Lhatse: several huge mineral deposits at its foot are planned to be exploited.

The front view of Garthar Gompa with a long line of Choerten

This is the main prayer building of the monastery

The wooden dormitories of the monks encircle the central yard in front of the prayer hall

The yard of the orphan school attached to the monastery

Monks are fitting prayers into the recently purchased Buddha statues. Before they will be placed in their final position inside the temple hall, the faces of the Buddha statues are covered with cloth in order to protect the filigree against the sun.