An Amazing Wonder of the World-The First Bend of Yangtze River
Yangtze River, considerd the mother river of China, flows majestically through the center of China and is the third longest river in the world. Starting from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the Yangtze River surges southeastward until it meets the Hengduan Mountain Range. About 44 miles outside of Lijiang, unusual geological phenomenons force the Yangtze to make a sudden V-shaped bend and flow to the northeast. This extraordinary turn, nearly 180-degrees, creates beautiful and marvelous views that startle the imagination.
According to the geologist, the Yangtze flowed southwards along Hengduan Mountains to Jianchuan and Yangbi Gorge in ancient time; later, land movement resulted in the change of the landform, which forced the river to divert, forming the turn of its flowing direction from south to east.The topography in the area mad e the bend commercially and militarily important. Mountain peo plecame down to trade for tea and other products. The Chama Road that is also called the Southern Silk Road went up from Dali to Shaxi, and a branch went from the Naxi town of Shaxi to the bend of the river. A Naxi market town called Shigu was built here.
On the mountain besides the First Bend of the Yangtze, stands a small town which is named Shigu Town. That is because, in this town, there is a monument carved in the white marble in the shape of a drum, whose diameter is 15 meters and thickness is 0.7 meters.
It is for memorizing the victory of the outspread of power of Baizhuang, the Tusi of Mu Family of Lijiang, during Jiajin years in the Ming Dynasty.Until now, it is one of the stone monuments built in the earliest period in Lijiang.