The glaciers of Yulong Snow Mountain (玉龙雪山), one of Lijiang's top tourist attractions and a major source of water for the region, are disappearing quickly due to global warming, according to information released by the Frigid and Arid Zone Environment and Engineering Institute of the China Academy of Sciences.
Between 1982 and 2002, Yulong Snow Mountain's largest glacier, Baishui Number One Glacier, receded 250 meters. The glacier and other glaciers on the mountain also became thinner and have been accumulating less snow, the institute said. The above photos compare the mountain several years ago (top) with how it appeared this past Sunday.
Yulong Snow Mountain is a mountain massif, or small mountain range, which is seated 25 kilometers north of Lijiang's old town and forms the southern side of Tiger Leaping Gorge, one of the world's deepest gorges. It spans 13 kilometers from east to west and is home to 19 glaciers covering a total area of 11.6 square kilometers.
Yulong's glaciers are crucial to the surrounding area's ecology and they are also a major tourist draw for Lijiang, one of China's most popular travel destinations. The photos below compare how one of Yulong's peaks looked in November 2004 (top) and last Saturday.