Tiger Leaping Gorge
The First Bend of the Yangtze River
Tiger Leaping Gorge is one of the most thrilling and breath-taking scenic canyons in the world. Located along the Jinsha River, a primary tributary of the upper Yangtze River, the name comes from a legend of a erce tiger leaping on a boulder to cross the raging waters to escape a hunter. 寬敞的金沙江在繞過長江上遊第一灣之後，突然擠進落差高達3,790公尺的大峽谷。峽谷中最窄的地方僅30余米寬，悠悠江水頓時像千軍萬馬一洋，在震耳欲聾的呼嘯聲中排山倒海，聲勢壯觀。在這段江水中有一塊巨石，相傳一只猛虎下山，曾蹬踩巨石一躍跳過巨浪滔天的金沙江，該處就是著名的觀景地——虎跳峽。
Natural Dangers of the Jinsha River
The Yangtze River is over 6,300km long, making it the longest river in Asia. The section between China's Yushu Town of Qinghai Provice to Yibin City of Sichuan Province is known as the Jinsha River. As the Jinsha reaches Shigu Town in Yunnan, cliffs change the river’s course, forcing the water into a V shape which is the famous First Bend of the Yangtze River.
The legendary Imperial Chancellor, Zhuge Liang, during the Three Kingdoms period (220–280) was said to have begun his military campaign south of the First Bend.
After the First Bend, the next stretch of the river heads north and passes through a 16km long gap between the Haba Snow Mountain and the beautiful Jade Dragon Snow Mountain. The previously tranquil river turns wild here, featuring terrifying waves and powerful surges through what is known as the Tiger Leaping Gorge, 3,790 metres in depth and only 30 metres wide at its narrowest point. Average width is merely 60-80 meters. Imagine the power of the water as it’s forced through this bottleneck - such a thrilling and breath-taking sight!
Tiger Leaping Gorge: not for the faint-hearted
This gorge is the one of the deepest and most spectacular river canyons in the world. Ever since ancient times, adventure seekers are lured here to feel the power of mother nature and to be enveloped within the thunderous roar of the surging water that vibrates throughout the valley, engulfing all man-made sounds. Within the Gorge is a distinctive landmark - a huge boulder with a fascinating story. Legend has it that a hunter chased a fierce tiger into the gorge. The tiger used the rock to launch himself across the raging river and disappeared on the Haba Snow Mountain. The hunter was left in awe of the tiger’s jump, hence naming the canyon - Tiger Leaping Gorge.
全長 6 千 3百多公里的長江是亞洲第一長河，自青海玉樹至四川宜賓一段稱之為金沙江，在途經雲南麗江石鼓鎮時，滾滾長江被山崖阻擋，急轉成一個「Ⅴ」形大彎，這就是著名的萬里長江第一灣。
虎跳峽兩側巖石為片巖和大理巖組成，寬度僅60 至 80 米，最窄處約 30 余米。
Scenic Areas of the Gorge
As the number of tourists has increased year by year, three new viewing platforms have been built to accommodate the demand. There is a viewing platform at the upper, middle and lower section of the gorge.
The upper viewing platform is the most popular. Tourists can climb a 100-foot stone staircase leading to a clear viewing platform where they can enjoy a unique perspective of the surging waters and the famous Tiger Leaping Rock.
The middle platform is about 5 km away from the upper area and provides the perfect spot to get up close to the roaring waters and the Tiger Leaping Rock from a transparent platform underneath one’s feet. The lower platform is at a depth of around 1 km and is closer to where the river exits the gorge. This platform affords a wonderful view of the entire gorge.
Conquering Tiger Leaping Gorge
Tiger Leaping Gorge came onto the world stage when rafters from all over the world became determined to conquer the untamed upper reaches of the Yangtze River. In 1985, 32-yearold Yao Maoshu resolved to beat the foreigners and rushed to be the first to triumph. Unfortunately he did not succeed, tragically drowning in the attempt.
In 1986, the Loyang Yangtze River Raft Expedition Team set off with the mission to bring glory to the nation. Despite the loss of two team members, they succeeded and were the first team to navigate the extreme rapids of Tiger Leaping Gorge.
Tiger Leaping Gorge has remained an impossible challenge for the majority of rafters due to its sheer unpredictability. In the 33 years since Yao’s first ill-fated attempt, less than 150 people have managed to conquer these wild rapids.
中虎跳距離上虎跳約5 公里，江面落差大，滔滔江水奔騰而過， 相當壯觀。