May 30, 2012

Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

crescent lake desert oasis dunhuang china Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

Photograph via UrinalCakes on Reddit

 

 

Located approximately 6 km (3.73 miles) from the outskirts of the city of Dunhuang in Western China, lies Crescent Lake, an incredible oasis in the Gobi desert. Known as Yueyaquan in Chinese, the crescent-shaped lake is a major tourist attraction where one of the world’s great shrines to Buddhism resides.

Designated a World Heritage Site, the lake has been shrinking since the 1970s and is now about a third of its original size. In the last three decades alone, the lake has dropped more than 25 feet. However, it has been reported that the government has recently taken steps to preserve the site and restore the depth of the lake to previous levels (unsure how well that initiative is going though).

An ancient city that once served as China’s gateway to the West, Dunhuang is now threatened by very modern demands. A dam built three decades ago to help local farming, combined with a doubling of the population, have overstressed a fragile desert hydrology that had been stable for thousands of years. As more people arrived, the underground water table that is the city’s main source of drinking water started dropping. [Source: New York Times, Wikipedia]

In the photographs below you will see both aerials and closeups of this incredible desert jewel. Let’s hope the lake doesn’t dry up and can be enjoyed by many future generations to come.

 

 

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Crescent Lake

 

 

 

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Crescent Lake

 

 

 

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???, Crescent Lake

Photograph by black_lava on Flickr

 

 

 

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China - Crescent Moon Lake

 

 

 

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Silk Road China 2009 - 030 - Pagoda at Crescent Lake

Photograph by newlite on Flickr

 

 

 

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crescent lake desert oasis dunhuang china inside building Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

 

 

 

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???

Photograph by FeverZ on Flickr

 

 

 

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china crescent lake desert oasis Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

Photograph by Alex Kwok

 

 

 

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Crescent Moon Lake, Dunhuang

 

 

 

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Crescent Lake

 

 

 

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Crescent Moon Lake.

Photograph by CHAAAAAAR on Flickr

 

 

 

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??? ?

Photograph by FeverZ on Flickr

 

 

 

 

 

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great dune of pyla tallest sand dune in europe 2 Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

 

 

 

 

ellora caves india mountain temples 20 Crescent Lake: A Desert Oasis in China

 

 

 

 

 

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