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    監製:Chung Ka Wai

    11/08/2018
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    Although water is the stream of life, there are barely any signs of life in the salt lake situated in the Qaidam Basin of Qinghai Province. The salinity of the lake water here is higher than that of seawater, thus forming a thick white layer of salt crust on the lake’s surface. When the weather is merry, the blue sky reflects upon the water of Chaka Salt Lake as it does to a mirror, and this is how it comes to be known as the “Mirror of the Sky” in China.

    The place where perched the Qaidam Basin was once a part of the vast ocean eons ago, but diastrophism gave rise to high mountains which later formed the basin wherein the deposition and dehydration of seawater took place by which one after another salt lake was formed. Besides edible salts, the basin is abundant in valuable mineral resources that can be employed for development in aerospace technology, military affairs, medicine, etc. Therefore, highways and modern factories have been constructed in Qaidam Basin, the “cornucopia of resources”, in recent years.

    Although the Mongolian people who live in this arid land of desolation share a place with such treasures, they still follow the nomadic lifestyle of their ancestors and move in pursuit of water and grass. For them, horses are the treasures that matter most. Nevertheless, the red and black goji berries bred by this alkalinity-rich land also bring them wealth.

    It seems that people under the boundless firmament lying above such spacious land always acquire the treasures meant for them.

    Assistant Producer: Mandy KWOK
    Producer: Christine YU


    集數

    EPISODES
    • Epi4 Mirrors in the Highlands

      Epi4 Mirrors in the Highlands

      Although water is the stream of life, there are barely any signs of life in the salt lake situated in the Qaidam Basin of Qinghai Province. The salinity of the lake water here is higher than that of seawater, thus forming a thick white layer of salt crust on the lake’s surface. When the weather is merry, the blue sky reflects upon the water of Chaka Salt Lake as it does to a mirror, and this is how it comes to be known as the “Mirror of the Sky” in China.

      The place where perched the Qaidam Basin was once a part of the vast ocean eons ago, but diastrophism gave rise to high mountains which later formed the basin wherein the deposition and dehydration of seawater took place by which one after another salt lake was formed. Besides edible salts, the basin is abundant in valuable mineral resources that can be employed for development in aerospace technology, military affairs, medicine, etc. Therefore, highways and modern factories have been constructed in Qaidam Basin, the “cornucopia of resources”, in recent years.

      Although the Mongolian people who live in this arid land of desolation share a place with such treasures, they still follow the nomadic lifestyle of their ancestors and move in pursuit of water and grass. For them, horses are the treasures that matter most. Nevertheless, the red and black goji berries bred by this alkalinity-rich land also bring them wealth.

      It seems that people under the boundless firmament lying above such spacious land always acquire the treasures meant for them.

      Assistant Producer: Mandy KWOK
      Producer: Christine YU

      11/08/2018
    • Epi3 A Floating Wonderland

      Epi3 A Floating Wonderland

      Located at the northwest of Hunan province, Wulingyuan, Zhangjiajie has a total area of approximately 397 square kilometres. The region was listed as a World Natural Heritage in 1992 by UNESCO. Mountains in Zhangjiajie appear as pillars, with the three thousands of them seemingly floating in the air, an extraordinary landform named “Zhangjiajie Landform” by the International Association of Geomorphologists in 2010. The area of Zhangjiajie was an ancient ocean about 380 million years ago before a tremendous amount of terrigenous clasts sedimented to form the parent rock of Zhangjiajie – quartz sandstone. Later, deformation of the earth’s crust lifted the area as land. After several million years of erosion by water and wind, mesas were transformed into buttes and peak walls, which then broke into a forest of over three thousand overlapping peaks of peculiar shapes.

      Deep inside the Wuling Mountains is a secluded village of the Tujia ethnic group called Shiyanping Village. Among the population of only over six hundred people, two-thirds of them carry the surname “Quan”. With a history of more than six hundred years, the village preserved numerous stilt houses built during late Qing dynasty that seem to bring us back to the ancient past. The village’s oil pressing plant also dates back to over a century ago. That they still adopt the traditional, manual way of pressing oil is rare in this modern society. Lamentably, the decreasing number of young descendants staying in the village means these ancient village cultures are at risk of being lost.

      The Zhangjiajie Landform has reached its maturity by now after nurture and development. However, no flower can bloom forever, and nothing in nature can escape from withering or ageing. Zhangjiajie is no exception. Perhaps one day she will return to the sea and to the past.

      Assistant Producer: Dorothy YIP
      Producer: Tom CHAN
      Executive Producer: CHUNG Ka-wai

      04/08/2018
    • Epi2 Land of Fire and Ice

      Epi2 Land of Fire and Ice

      The northeastern part of Heilongjiang Province is the coldest area within China where the Wudalianchi volcanic cluster perched at Heihe City covers an area of over 800 km2, which is composed of volcanic cones that taken shape after the eruptions in different periods. With its well-preserved craters, various volcano-tectonic structures, magnificent lava flows, lava seas, etc., it is hailed as a volcanic marvel and was designated by the UNESCO as a World Geopark in 2004.

      Prof. BAI Zhi-da from the School of Earth Sciences and Resources at the China University of Geosciences, says that the volcanos of Wudalianchi volcanic cluster are still regarded as active, and are therefore closely monitored by the China Earthquake Administration. The cluster’s latest volcanic activity occurred in 1719 - 1721 which we can only imagine the consternation of the dwellers nearby who knew nothing about volcanos in the face of a sky overspread by soot and cathartic blares! The eruption that happened 300 years ago was not only documented by words but also gave rise to Mount Laohei and Mount Huoshao. The lava flows effused also segmented Baihe (White River) nearby into five sections which then formed five beaded volcanic barrier lakes, hence the name Wudalianchi (five successive lakes) volcanic cluster.

      The dark volcanic cones offer a stark contrast in vision to the snowcapped Northeast during winter while the volcanic rocks and spring water offer the locals with economic benefits. Legend says that the ancestral hunters of the Daur people went after a wounded deer to the spring next to the volcanos where they discovered the deer healed itself without any medication, they therefore regarded this mineral-rich spring as a medicinal spring for treating illnesses.

      The Daur people originally live in the Stanovoy Range region located on the northern coast of Heilongjiang Province. During the Kangxi period of Qing Dynasty, all Daur people were ordered to migrate south to Nenjiang plain because of the border disputes between the Qing Government and Tsar-Russia, and the place where they initially settled down for agriculture is today’s Aihui District in Heihe City. Even to this day, the Daur people still erect large Ovoos (yurts) in the autonomous village of Aihui District for offering rituals and benediction, which also serve as a symbol of their kind who scattered across China and Russia.

      The Oroqen people were also among those minorities who were ordered to move southward. They live on hunting, and this was why they chose to settle in the Xinsheng Village situated in the forest. Every time before they go uphill for hunting, the Shamans (wizards) in their tribes would guide the clan to worship the God of sky, the God of fire and the God of mountains for luck and abundance. While gun hunting is already forbidden and the Oroqen hunters having become performers for attracting tourists, the traditional roe deer hide crafts of the clan are still well-known throughout the country and have become a cultural heritage on this permafrost land in Heilongjiang Province.

      Assistant Producer: Cindy CHAN
      Producer: Joseph HUNG

      28/07/2018
    • Epi 1 The Sands of Time

      Epi 1 The Sands of Time

      Situated in northwestern China at the centre of Tarim Basin, Xinjiang, Taklamakan Desert covers a total area of approximately 330,000 square kilometres, making it the largest desert in the country and the second largest sand-shifting desert in the world. With little sign of life, long daylight and extremely high temperature, humans can only survive in oases that provide them with water.

      Keriya River means “to drift without settling” in Uyghur. Named for its frequent flow diversion due to seasonal floods, the stream comes from the main peak of the Kunlun Mountain, flowing into Taklamakan Desert from south to north. The river is a nurturing ground both for plants, which give rise to a green corridor in the middle of the desert, and for Keriyan people, who are isolated from the rest of the world.

      In as early as 1896, Swedish expeditioner Sven HEDIN went deep inside the desert, discovering the heritage of Dandan Uiliq and Ka La Dun from Han and Tang Dynasties amid the desert’s vastness. There is an extensive forest of populus euphratica, in which he even met a group of people who lived along the river in the primitive way of grazing. His travel journals became the earliest written record of Keriyan people’s lives.

      With the current population of around 1,500, Keriyan people are among the few groups of Chinese who still reside in the desert. Mainly found in oases near the Keriya River with the distance between households ranging from several to thirty or forty kilometres, these Islamic residents lead simple and unadorned lives. As they have been excluded from the rest of the world for a long period of time, they still keep the habits of their ancestors. Their adaptability to the unforgiving environment is reflected in everything from their lifestyle and food to architectural style and more.

      However, with economic development and construction of highways in Xinjiang, Keriyan people are getting closer to urban areas gradually. As modern cultures and technologies infuse into their everyday life bit by bit, we cannot help but wonder: can we still find traditional Keriyan people amidst the great wide desert after some years?

      Assistant Producer: Dorothy YIP
      Producer: Leo LAI

      21/07/2018