Even in the haze, the towering mountains by the Yangtze River were amazingly impressive.
From Shanghai we flew into Wuhan, Hubei province in central China, met by my host Dr. Guangming Hu who had been a visiting scholar in my department in 2013. Soon we were in a van heading to the Three Gorges Dam. We traveled through a landscape of rice paddies, rivers and lakes in a green and watery mosaic. The terrain along the Yangtze River is stunningly beautiful with steep slopes, limestone cliffs and villages with terraced fields. We toured the dam and lock system, then headed down the river gorge to see some geology.
My husband John and I enjoyed seeing the Three Gorges Dam. At the dam site itself, there were many tour groups of both foreign and Chinese visitors.
Below the Three Gorges Dam, cliff writings were carved into Cambrian limestones where a steep visitor staircase was cut.
Along the cliff carving path, nice herringbone cross bedding structures indicate an intertidal setting for the Cambrian limestones.
Several villages in the mountains have quarry storage areas for large stone monoliths for sale. I contemplate the large black shale concretions, and wonder about their formation…
Yangtze University has a strong focus on petroleum and energy. In their School of Geosciences I gave three days of lectures that included my two GSA talks, and additional lectures on hot topics in sedimentary geology, interactive learning styles, and skill sets for success. Yangtze University lies on a peninsula in a lake, with lots of new construction, flanked by farms on one side where chickens and ducks are heard. This is on the outskirts of our next stop, the big city of Wuhan.
A large monolith announcing the Yangtze University stands at the campus gate.
A large red banner greeted me across the entrance of Yangtze University. The banner announces part of the “Plan of World Famous Scientist Lecture- Marjorie Chan” (approximate translation of Chinese).
In the School of Geosciences at Yantze University, we pose by the GSA talk signs. My faculty host Dr. Guangming Hu specializes in sequence stratigraphy. One of my current M.S. students Kangcheng Yin (far left) joined us for part of the China portion of the trip to act as my translator (translating both lectures and conversations) – very handy for Wuhan.
The students were very interested in US graduate schools and application processes. The female students also wanted to know what the opportunities and challenges are for women scientists in America, and wanted to know my personal history.