Tuesday, June 10, 2008

China Day 11: A Dam Site Bigger than Any Dam I Saw Before

Now it's time for our tour of the Three Gorges Dam. The Chinese people are extremely proud of this thing! We left our boat and climbed a steep set of steps
then walked through an alley which had been colonized by vendors before boarding the bus that would take us to the dam site.

The tour was interesting, if a little too heavily sprinkled with Dam jokes from "Kevin", who "hoped when we're done you'll say I was the best dam guide you've had," and so on. This was the first place since the Forbidden City where we had to go through security to get into somewhere: the bus pulled up to a military post
and everybody had to get off and go through a metal detector.

At the dam itself they had a little visitor's center
where there was a model of the dam as it will be when it is completed.
The white bit on the far left of the photo is the main dam with its sluices and turbines (I don't really know the correct terminology); in the middle is a channel leading to the yet-incomplete ship elevator, and at the right is a wider channel leading to the ship lock.
You can see that the lock has five levels; only four are complete as of now but that's plenty!

Dad and I then wandered around the site, climbing up to an observation point where you could see for miles around:
Well, I climbed up it;
Dad stayed more sensibly at ground level.
Last, they took us closer to the dam itself. Here it is, up close and personal, from the upstream side:

Reading List:

Barry Hughart - the Number Ten Ox series
Lisa See - Peony in Love
- Snow Flower and the Secret Fan
Amy Tan - The Kitchen God's Wife
- The Bonesetter's Daughter
- The Joy Luck Club
Robert van Gulik - the Judge Dee novels

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