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Underground Ice River in Heihe City

 2014-06-02    sonrisabai    Sights    Heihe    626  

Underground Ice River is located in the west side of Heihe City, Heilongjiang province. It is a snow cave that is filled with frost and snow, and in the bottom of cave, there is an icy river that could be traced back to around ten thousand years ago. It just became a popular tourist spot in recent years.



One thing worth mentioning is the cold degrees in the cave, it’s about 5 degrees minus all the year around, definitely the perfect place to go if you need an escape from burning sun and uncomfortable summer heat.
The total length of ice river is about 512 meters long, with a depth of 25 meters. The design is very human, 380 meters for sight-seeing and 150 meters is for adventures-heaven of risk-takers.

During the formation of icy river, the surface of burning-hot lava concreted into hard shell cuz the cold air, yet the lava underneath the surface was still flowing. When there wasn’t enough lava flowing, a hollow was forming gradually. Then there was lava tunnel, blessed by the special frozen soil in this area, plus spring snow-melting and summer rains, thus we could see the bending ice river today. It is also the longest lava underground tunnel yet discovered in China. Nature wonders just never stop to amaze us.



For a cold animal like me, visiting there could be a real challenge. I grabbed a thick coat before going out that day in case I might be freezing to death. The entrance ticket wasn’t very expensive in my opinion, about 30RMB per person.

Like any other underground tourist attractions, the entrance was small and narrow. It was less than one meter in width and1.6m in height, I had to bend over a little bit to pass through. It was so cold! Thank god I brought my thick jacket. A dozen steps later, the view was getting broader and wider. Inside this water-eroded cave is a spectacular world of various stalactites, stone pillars and rock formations created by lava. Lava stalactites in various forms and shapes were such a treat to the eyes, all pure white, I felt like I was in some Ice Palace.



Following by the man-made leading tunnel, we came to the entrance of lava cave. The height of it was about 1.4 meters, and was about 2 meters in width. You really need to be extremely careful along the wooden deck. Wanna try on slippery ice? Only if you were a cat with nice lives to lose. Though I got my thick coat on, I was still feeling cold after 15 minute walking inside the cave.

The top of the cave was covered by beautiful white ice flower, looking like icy branches from distance. It became more mysterious with small colorful lights shining. Ice tubes hanging on the cave wall, crystal frost was everywhere, clear waters flowing under feet, everything was freezing! This was like a real world of ice age, just more colorful than that Hollywood cartoon movie.
  

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