inside thoughts on China and beyond

Portfolio – On The Road

Chinese roads are amazing. Some are new and hectic, others are ages old but quiet. Some are heavily used by cars, other will never be. Some wind across high passes, others cut through endless deserts and grasslands. But all have their own story to tell. All we need to do is travel them, listen, and learn.   As Aldous Huxley said long ago: “To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.”

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Kashgar, Xinjiang

Tea Horse Route, the ancient tea and horse traders route to Tibet and India, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Yunnan, China

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One travels more usefully when alone, because he reflects more   –  Thomas Jefferson

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Just a countryside road in south-west Guizhou, China

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Jiayuguan, the ‘beginning’ of the Great Wall and a fortress along the Silk Route, the passage to the MIddle-East and Europe, Ganzu, China

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A small path in a Qiang minority village that was completely distroyed during the 2008 earthquake, Sichuan, China

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Karakoram Highway, the connection crossing the Himalayas to Pakistan, Tashikurgan, Xinjiang, China

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Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it. – Jeremiah 6:16

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Women on the road to their fields in Dimen, Guizhou, China

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The Road goes ever on and on

Down from the door where it began.

Now far ahead the Road has gone,

And I must follow, if I can,

Pursuing it with eager feet,

Until it joins some larger way

Where many paths and errands meet.

And whither then? I cannot say.

JRR Tolkien , The Lord of the Rings

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Tajik shepards on the road in northern Xinjiang, China

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Monks on the way to a sky-burial on the Tibetan Plateau, Sichuan, China

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Like all great travellers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen   –  Benjamin Disraeli

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Local transportation near Erhai Lake, Yunnan, China

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Uighurs on the road in Aksu, Xinjiang, China

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A peasant using an ancient hollowed-out road in south-east Guizhou, China

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Peasants and their trade entering a village in south-east Guizhou, China

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Standing in the middle of the road is very dangerous; you get knocked down by the traffic from both sides. – Margaret Thatcher

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A road in south-east Guizhou, China

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Floods cover the road after heavy rain in south Hainan, China

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A yak crossing the road in the Tibetan area, Sichuan, China

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The safest road to hell is the gradual one – the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.  –  C. S. Lewis

The safest road to hell is the gradual one – the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.  –  C. S. Lewis.

An erosion affected road in south-west Guizhou, China

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Long working hours, aggressive drivers, bad roads; too many reasons for tragic accidents, Gansu,China

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Overloaded lorries plow ahead over the old road, while at the horizon the new highway G5 is being constructed, south Sichuan, China

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Unequals sharing the same road in south Guizhou, China

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The wholesale street in Chongqing, China

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Streets under repair in small village in south-east Sichuan, China

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Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.   – C. S. Lewis

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A congested bridge over the Yangze river in Chongqing, China

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Empty trucks returning from Urumchi on the way to cross the Gobi Desert, Xinjiang, China

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Curious young monks checking out the laowai along a road in the Tibetan area, Sichuan, China

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It is better to travel well than to arrive.  –  Buddha

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Local transport in south-east Guizhou, China

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A young road user in Jiuzhaigou, Sichuan, China

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The endless tarmac of the Karakoram Highway, Tashkurgan, Xinjiang, China

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A high mountain pass in Aba, Tibetan area, Sichuan, China

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But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life   – Matthew 7:14

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More photo impressions on this topic can be viewed on my photo site.

12 responses

  1. Pingback: Dutchinaman's Blog

  2. Great collection of photos here. China offers so many photographic opportunities and looks like you are taking them. Miss those days living in Zhejiang. Keep up the good work, I always enjoy your new posts.

    October 27, 2013 at 8:18 pm

  3. That looks like a nice long term project.

    October 27, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    • Yes, Nomadruss, correct; it stretches from 2008 to 2013. But the word ‘project’ is somewhat of an overstatement: it is a collection from photos that were part of many different projects and trips. It’s nice to ‘cross-examine’ earlier work and find common areas.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:01 pm

  4. Amazing images. Gives me itchy feet!

    October 27, 2013 at 9:39 pm

  5. Felt as if I was there. Wonderful photos.

    October 27, 2013 at 11:04 pm

  6. Fantastic Series!!!

    October 28, 2013 at 1:15 am

  7. I look forward to seeing these on my home computer. At work they’re blocked for some reason.

    October 29, 2013 at 1:59 am

  8. these photos are incredible. some of them look so ancient, like they are photos from china in the 1800s. but you say they were taken in the last 5 years? that’s amazing. i’m glad to know that there are some parts of the world that have been untouched by man, like those photos of the himalayas.

    in contrast to the photos of chonqing and the bridge in the forefront. is that smog obscuring the skyline?

    October 29, 2013 at 11:49 am

    • Yes, sadly but surely, it is smog.

      October 29, 2013 at 1:58 pm

  9. I entirely appreciate all that you do up here. Thank you 🙂

    October 30, 2013 at 10:06 am

  10. These are amazing photographs, and Thank you for sharing with us, it was a journey for me at my desk. With my love, nia

    October 31, 2013 at 4:15 pm

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