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        The Historical Vicissitudes of the AncientSalt-Sheep Road

        The east is famous for its Tea-Horse Road, while the west is paved by the Salt-Sheep Road!

        The salt lakes are absolutely our treasures. No matter what delights may be hiding inside them, nothing can compare with the salt we use for food. It is a genuinely phenomenal, plentiful, and boundless resource to us. All things we receive from the salt lakes are gifts bestowed by both the sun and the moon.

        Changme Village of Salt Lakes Township in the jurisdiction of Gegye County (Ngari Prefecture) is seated over 4,500 meters above sea level. Pumar, a 76-year-old local resident who is also an intangible cultural inheritor, was singing an ancient folk ballad known for generations among herders dwelling around the salt lakes.

        The biggest salt-lake system in western Tibet is named Dramchang Three Lakes, consisting of Numa Rinpung Tso, Gyigya Tso and Khachen Tso (with the Tibetan term tso meaning lake). The total area of the salt !elds blankets over 2,500 square meters, with an annual production of around 3,000 metric tons of salt. Migmar Tsering, a retired grassroots cadre of Ngari Prefecture, told us that this place was the origin of the famous Salt-Sheep Road more than 1,000 years ago. The salt lakes served as the central hub, with the road extending to Purang of Ngari in the west, Lhasa in the east, Shigatse in the south, and Xinjiang in the north, not to mention the foreign nations of India and Nepal. It is historically and archeologically attested, and not by little supporting evidence...

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        Text by Zhang Zheng, Liao Jiaxing, Tashi Padma, Yang Junlu

        China Tibet Online
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        Sponsor: The Journal Office of Chinas Tibet
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