Gaotai itself is a small town which has nothing special to boast. However, its memorial park of the West Route Red Army, which was surrounded and massacred in the city by local bandits, tells a story of bloodbath in the history of the Red Army. The battle happened around 1930s, and an army corps of the West Route Red Army was chased and surrounded in Gaotai by the nationalist army. Despite the fierce resistance, they were all brutally killed. The commanders were beheaded and their heads were wired and hung up for public display. The story of the doomed West Route Red Army merits a book, and I am no expert to tell you the whole story. Anyway, the memorial park is a place to feel the cruelty of the history.
My trip to Gaotai gave me a rare opportunity to observe the total eclipse of the sun. This is a highlight of my travel in the Wild West.
The Black River: just moments before the eclipse. This river is the second largest inland river in China. The unusual rise of the water level resulted from the rain in the previous day.
A Bright late afternoon sunlight turned into dawn hours in a transient moment during the eclipse.
I was at 100 kilometers away from the best observation spot of this eclipse.
The Arizona style dry land along to the road to Gaotai.