Two Visits to the Ancient Wild Goose Gate - Western Passes


Wenwang Predator

Visit the ancient Wild Goose Gate West Pass, at the Iron Gate.

Goose Gate Pass, the most fought pass in ancient China.

The most famous pass in Shanxi would be the Yanmen and Ping-type Pass! Pingxing Pass is famous because of the war, while Yanmen Pass is famous because of the war, and in the past people liked to listen to commentaries and watch operas, these commentaries In opera, the wild goose gate is a very important role, especially in the story of the Yang general, the strong west wind and the tragic story of the wild goose gate is always missing. The image of the figure, it, always seems to be accompanied by the remaining sun like blood or black clouds pressing the city, this image is deeply imprinted in the brain, leading to every wild goose gate, such as When it's cloudy, it's always with mixed feelings.

A visit to the Pingxingguan Pass, in the Pingxingguan Pass City Wang Pei photo

Searching for the Pinnacle Pass, at the Pinnacle Pass City Guo Jing photo

The Wild Goose Gate Pass (East Pass) today Guo Jing

For young people, the Wild Goose Gate might be famous for its martial arts! Qiao Feng's decisive leap has brought tears to the eyes of many martial arts fans.

Still from "The Eighth Part of the Dragon" Source from the web

As a lover of history, I will always look up those old stories, and as a Shanxi native, I will pay more attention to those related to Shanxi. Of course, this will not disappoint me, because there are always many things related to Shanxi in history, especially in times of war. The history of China seems to be a desperate, repetitive and reoccurring story of political struggle and military war. A tedious story. So, Shanxi will always keep appearing in the history books, and the ancient battlefield will always let you search endlessly.

If you are familiar with history, you should know that Yanmen Pass, which is now a scenic spot, doesn't really have many stories to tell. Li Mu killed 100,000 cavalrymen of the Xiongnu, Liu Bang's Battle of Baideng, Wei Qing and Huo Daosi's northern expedition to Yanmen, Zhaogun's departure from the Frontier, Wen Ji's return to Han, and the Tang Dynasty's establishment of a new empire. The stories of Yanmen Pass, Yang Ye's Yanmen Pass victory, and even the fictional Qiao Feng's Yanmen Pass cliff jump, etc., have nothing to do with the present Yanmen Pass. The current Wild Goose Gate Pass is the East Pass, while the Ancient Wild Goose Gate Pass is the West Pass, which is the real Wild Goose Gate Pass that has witnessed many important histories. For this reason, I have always wanted to see what the real Wild Goose Gate Pass looks like today. The reasons are always difficult to follow.

In April 2020, two visits were made to the Western Pass.

The first time was looking from inside the pass. The West Pass runs from east to west, with the inside of the pass on the east side of the pass and the outside on the west side. Starting from National Highway 208 and going along the abandoned village road, the road was so rough that at the end the car just couldn't go any further, look at the map. It was already close to the Western Pass, but it was getting late, so I had to stop, and my first search for the Western Pass was fruitless.

The ancient road in the Western Pass Guo Jing photo

A few days later, we were on the road again in search of the Western Pass, this time from outside the pass. We left early in the morning from Taiyuan and arrived at the old Guangwu City at about 9:00 a.m., where we visited the ruins of Liulang City. At this time, it was farming season in Yanbei, with farmland, castles and the Great Wall in between, a completely different scene in the north and south of Jinan. At the site of the famous Battle of Yubi in the Northern and Southern Dynasties, the ears of wheat in Jinan were sinking and nearly ripe, while beyond the Great Wall in Jinan's north, farmers were just Just sowed seeds.

Standing at Rokuro Castle looking out over the old Hiromu Castle. Photo by Wang Predator

A farmer ploughs the fields in Rokuro Castle.

A visit to the site of the Battle of Jade Biscuit, taken by Wang Pei

A visit to the site of the Battle of Jade Biscuit by Guo Jing

The wheat at the site of the ancient city of Yubi is almost ripe.

Driving along the ancient Yanmen Road, the villages are largely abandoned, so the road is sporadic, and there is a lot of sheep and goats on the road. The scenery is beautiful with the water flowing away from the mountain. The car soon can no longer move forward, only to find a place to stop and hike. Resting by the stream, I thought about the wartime jingoism and peace of the busy main road here in the old days. Crossing, when they came here again, they must have marveled at the fact that the road that was still possible by carriage today is almost No traces of the road can be seen.

West Pass ancient road Guo Jing photo

The ancient road outside the Western Pass Wang Pei photo

Soon there was no road and no internet signal on the phone, so it was good to learn from the last time, this time in the morning, there was plenty of time. With years of research on it, using the satellite map that I have seen many times in my memory to look for it, I finally found it. After climbing over two beams, I finally saw traces of the old road again, and the iron wrapped gate was also hidden in the distance, Yanmen Pass, the real Yanmen Pass. The Wild Goose Gate where countless generals have come, here we come!

The site of the ancient wild goose gate road, taken by Wang Pei

The ruins of the Wild Goose Gate Ancient Road, with the Wild Goose Gate Pass in the distance.

On the side of the cliff facing the Goose Gate Old Road, there are hidden traces of rammed earth, as if there used to be rammed earth walls on the side of the road, or these rammed earths are the The old road has been washed away by thousands of years of rain, and the road has become a deep ditch, but one side of the road has not been washed away to reveal its current shape? These may forever remain a mystery, but, that's what draws us to take the trouble to find it, it, there are so many unanswered questions that make the We go exploring.

The rammed earth wall on the side of the old road Photo by Wang hide

At the top of the mountain, that is the location of the ancient Wild Goose Gate West Pass, called the Iron Gate, Wild Goose Gate has always been known as the Wild Goose Gate Purple Cypress, whether it is Iron Gate Gate or Purple Cypress is related to its topography, the stones in this area are really special, they glow purple in the sun and are especially Loose and seemingly iron, but a layer can fall off when touched, such a strange stone is the reason why Emperor Wu of the Han Dynasty wanted to chisel it when he sent troops to the Xiongnu - It's so easy to chisel! According to the records, the Western Han attacked the Xiongnu out of Gou Chu Mountain (i.e. Yanmen Pass), and for the convenience of the army walking, a mountain pass was cut in Gou Chu Mountain. When you come here now, you can still clearly see the traces of the man-made excavation, and the rolling hills to this point clearly have a huge The hole, which shows that the historical record is true.

It is clear that there are traces of manual excavation.

The stone of the Western Pass is ochre, shining brightly, taken by Wang Pei.

The Western Pass has been an important pass between Zhao and the Xiongnu since the Warring States period, and was once guarded by the famous general Li Mu, who was responsible for the annihilation of 100,000 Xiongnu. Iron cavalry, the Xiongnu never dared to go south to herd horses in the war. In the Tang dynasty, Yang Ye officially built a gate here, and in the Song dynasty, Yang Ye was the guardian of Yanmen, and became famous for his victory at Yanmen Pass, which made him the most famous warlord in the history of the Northern Song Dynasty. Yang Ye was the only general of the Northern Song Dynasty who was feared by the Chinese people, and from then on, "Yang was invincible", until Yongxi died in the battle of Yanmen Pass, north of the Northern Expedition. In the Yuan Dynasty, this area was no longer an important border defense area and was gradually abandoned. Since then, the Western Pass has retired from the stage of history.

The ancient wild goose gate iron gate Wang hide photo

The Yuan Dynasty was abandoned, and now it has been 600 to 700 years, after which the road here is no longer repaired, and the ancient wild goose gate road is gradually with the mountains. fused into one. But even now, when we come to the Western Pass, although 600 or 700 years have passed, human activity can still be seen everywhere here traces - broken rubble, rusty nails, broken ceramics, and even picked up a mutilated one on the Goose Gate Trail The Jin Dai coin, with the handwriting of "Dading Tongbao" clearly distinguishable. I think, the owner must have lost this coin by accident, perhaps, he had searched for it in the ancient path and never thought of it. It's been lying here for over 900 years and was picked up by us 900 years later, even though it's rusted away with only half of it left, also Not much value, but it is a miracle, is a bridge between the ancient and modern people, history is within reach here.

Everywhere there are broken pottery and porcelain, Wang Pei photo.

Remnants of nails, photo by Guo Jing

A piece of bladed iron was found. Photo by Guo Jing.

A damaged Dading Tongbao coin was found on the Yanmen Ancient Road, taken by Wang Pei.

We keep shuttling back and forth in the iron gate, thinking about how Emperor Wu of the Western Han Dynasty chiseled it open, how Wei Qing and Huo Daosi once stomped on it, how Yang Ye commanded it with certainty, and how today, only the two of us are alone, and how the years have passed, and how a thousand years is just an instant!

This is the place where the West Pass was once a fortress.

On the hills on both sides of the Iron Wrapped Gate, it is already difficult to imagine what the pass looked like at that time, two mountains facing each other, with an artificially excavated passage in the middle, where the pass was set up across the two mountains, it is very majestic to think about, it was once an insurmountable natural danger for the nomads in the north, and also the last barrier for the defense of the Chinese Han people in the Central Plains, it, well fulfilled its mission, because there is hardly any record of crossing it by force in history.

There is a towering mound on the hill above the West Pass, which may have been the site of a beacon, but it also looks like the sealed earth of a tomb, isolated, with caves everywhere, as if they were robber caves, and one cannot find any record of what one has excavated here, it is as much a mystery as the West Pass.

There are such caves all around the mound. Photo by Wang Pei

Not far from the West Pass is a site where people excavate mountains for rock, and the occasional herd of cattle and sheep, climbing with herders, he said. There's nothing to see here, nothing at all! They do not know that there is a rich history here, but also the indomitable spirit of the Chinese people's struggle. The epitome of war history.

Goose Gate ancient road ruins Guo Jing photo

Ancient Wild Goose Gate Road Ruins Guo Jing

Graphic courtesy of Wang Pei

Graphic courtesy of Guo Jing

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