Litang County

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Litang County
County
Chinese transcription(s)
 • Simplified 理塘县
 • Traditional 理塘縣
 • Hanyu Pinyin Lǐtáng Xiàn
Tibetan transcription(s)
 • Tibetan script ལི་ཐང་རྫོང
 • Wylie li thang rdzong
 • Tibetan pinyin Litang Zong
Yaks in the Ganden Thubchen Choekhorling monastery courtyard
Yaks in the Ganden Thubchen Choekhorling monastery courtyard
Litang County (red) in Garzê Prefecture (yellow) and Sichuan
Litang County (red) in Garzê Prefecture (yellow) and Sichuan
Litang is located in Sichuan
Litang
Litang
Location of the seat in Sichuan
Coordinates: 30°00′N 100°16′E / 30.000°N 100.267°E / 30.000; 100.267Coordinates: 30°00′N 100°16′E / 30.000°N 100.267°E / 30.000; 100.267
Country People's Republic of China
Province Sichuan
Autonomous prefecture Garzê
County seat Litang Town
Elevation 3,954 m (12,972 ft)
Population (2001)
 • Total 47,500
Time zone China Standard (UTC+8)
Website litang.gov.cn

Litang or Lithang (Tibetan script: ལི་ཐང་རྫོང; Chinese: 理塘县) is a county of the traditional Kham Region of Eastern Tibet, currently located in the southwest of Garzê Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, western Sichuan province, People's Republic of China.

In 2001 it had a population of 47,500. Several famous Buddhist figures were born here, including the Kelzang Gyatso, the 7th Dalai Lama, Tsultrim Gyatso, the 10th Dalai Lama, four of the Pabalas, and it has strong connections with the epic hero Gesar of Ling,[1] as well as the 5th Jamyang Xaiba of Labrang.

Litang Town in the 1840s.

During the 1950s, the region around Litang was one of the main areas of Tibetan armed resistance to the presence of the PRC's People's Liberation Army (PLA). A resistance group called "Four Rivers, Six Ranges" was active in the area. In 1956 the monastery in Litang was bombed by the PLA.

Litang Town (the seat of the county) itself is located at an altitude of 4,014 metres. It is on open grassland and surrounded by snow-capped mountains and is about 400 meters higher than Lhasa, making it one of the highest towns in the world.[2]

In August, 2007, a horse-racing festival at Litang was the scene of an impromptu anti-government political speech by Runggye Adak, which was followed by protests calling for his release. A crackdown officially described as "patriotic education campaign" followed in autumn of 2007, including several politically motivated arrests and attempts to force local Tibetans to denounce the Dalai Lama.[3]

Modern Tibetan home on road Kangding to Litang

Administrative divisions[edit]

Litang County administers one town and 23 more rural townships:

Climate[edit]

With an elevation of nearly 4,000 metres (13,000 ft), Litang has an alpine subarctic climate (Köppen Dwc), with long, cold, dry winters, and short, cool summers with very frequent rain. The monthly 24-hour average temperature ranges from −5.8 °C (21.6 °F) in January to only 10.6 °C (51.1 °F) in July; the annual mean is 3.25 °C (37.8 °F). Over 80% of the 722 mm (28.4 in) of annual precipitation is delivered from June to September. With monthly percent possible sunshine ranging from 38% in July to 83% in December, the county seat receives 2,643 hours of bright sunshine annually, with winter by far the sunniest season.

Climate data for Litang (1971−2000)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 3.5
(38.3)
5.0
(41)
8.0
(46.4)
11.0
(51.8)
15.3
(59.5)
17.1
(62.8)
16.8
(62.2)
16.3
(61.3)
15.1
(59.2)
12.3
(54.1)
7.8
(46)
4.2
(39.6)
11.0
(51.9)
Average low °C (°F) −13.3
(8.1)
−10.6
(12.9)
−6.5
(20.3)
−2.9
(26.8)
1.5
(34.7)
5.4
(41.7)
6.3
(43.3)
5.8
(42.4)
3.9
(39)
−0.8
(30.6)
−7.5
(18.5)
−12.7
(9.1)
−2.6
(27.3)
Precipitation mm (inches) 1.4
(0.055)
4.0
(0.157)
10.1
(0.398)
21.9
(0.862)
52.5
(2.067)
134.4
(5.291)
185.1
(7.287)
155.5
(6.122)
115.2
(4.535)
34.0
(1.339)
5.2
(0.205)
2.9
(0.114)
722.2
(28.432)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 2.1 4.1 8.0 11.9 14.2 20.7 24.6 22.8 20.1 9.8 4.4 2.2 144.9
 % humidity 40 43 47 54 55 67 75 76 74 63 51 44 57.4
Mean monthly sunshine hours 259.7 231.8 248.4 228.2 235.1 186.4 161.9 168.3 177.7 233.4 251.0 261.0 2,642.9
Percent possible sunshine 81 74 67 59 56 45 38 41 48 66 79 83 60
Source: China Meteorological Administration

Transport[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Mayhew, Bradley and Kohn, Michael. (2005). Tibet. 6th Edition, p. 260. Lonely Planet. ISBN 1-74059-523-8.
  2. ^ Buckley, Michael and Straus, Robert. (1986) Tibet: a travel survival kit, p, 219. Lonely Planet Publications. South Yarra, Victoria, Australia. ISBN 0-908086-88-1.
  3. ^ "Crackdown in eastern Tibet."

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Tsering Shakya: The Dragon in the Land of Snows. A History of Modern Tibet Since 1947, London 1999, ISBN 0-14-019615-3