The Tiemen Pass
The Tiemen Pass, following the gorge of the Peacock River, connects the Yanqi Basin and the Tarim Basin in Xinjiang province of China. And it’s about seven kilometers north of the city Karashahr. What’s more, the Iron Gate Pass plays a very vital role in protecting the ancient Silk Roads from assaulting nomads from the north because it was guarded carefully without difficulty. And the Iron Gate Pass was of great strategic importance because it formed a vulnerable bottle-neck on the Silk Road. And it was a place contested by all strategists from everlasting. However, nowadays, the pass is not part of the road infrastructure of that region any longer. Instead, it is regarded as a scenic and historical tourist attraction. And a great reservoir was built on the dam. Furthermore, fronting water and with a hill at the back, this gorge has a dense growth of evergreen trees and forms a “retreat away from the world”.
There was a legendary and tragic love story about the gorge of the Iron Gate Pass. According to the legend, it was said that a princess called Tzouhla who was the Kingdom of Yanqi had fallen in love with a poor herdsman called Tayir. However, the royal court strongly opposed them. As a result, the king believed the minister Karehan’s slanderous talk and had Tayir killed. As the princess waged a desperate struggle and tried to rescue her lover from the king's soldiers, both of them were killed in the gorge. A tumulus is said to mark the place in which the two lovers were buried opposite to the gate to the pass. People at home and abroad are deeply touched and encouraged by their constancy in love. And their pure love with each other will last forever.