Yamdrok Lake is located less than 100 kilometers away from Lhasa. It is a sacred place for Tibetans. It is one of the three holy lakes in Tibet. Some Tibetan Buddhists circle the lake on horses once a year. It takes them about a month. They believe that it is an alternative to the pilgrimage to Lhasa. In the eyes of the Mongols, Yamdrok Lake is the incarnation of the daughter of the dragon, also the place where the guardian goddess for Tibet lives.
Yamdrok Lake Lhasa is over 72 kilometers (45 miles) long. The lake is surrounded by many snow-capped mountains and is fed by a lot of small streams. The lake has an outlet stream at its far western end. Around 90 kilometers to the west of the lake lay the Tibetan town of Gyantse and Lhasa is approximately hundred kilometers to the northwest.
There is a power station that was completed and dedicated in 1996 near the small village of Pai-Ti at the western end of Yamdrok Lake. This power station can be regarded as the biggest one in Tibet.
The lake with an area of 621 square kilometers and the unknown depth is fan-shaped, spreading to the South but narrowing up to the North. The mountainous lake has a dozen of islands, the largest of which is about 3,000 square kilometer. The lake freezes up in winter. Like mountains, lakes are considered sacrosanct by the Tibetan people, the principle being that they are the dwelling places of protective deities and therefore invested with special spiritual powers.
There are shoals of fish living in Yamdrok Yumtso lake, which are commercially exploited by local people. From April to October, the yamdrok lake fish caught from this lake are sold at markets in Lhasa. Moreover, the lake's islands serve as rich pasture land to local herdmen.
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