Event Detail

6
May
2008

Exploration

Wong How Man
Tuesday, 6 May 2008
THE ROYAL GEOGRAPHICAL SOCIETY HONG KONG presents "To the Source of the Mekong" by Wong How Man on Tuesday, 6 May 2008 The Hong Kong Fooll Club, Causeway Bay 6.30pm Drinks Reception; 7.30 pm Lecture We are delighted to welcome again Wong How Man, one of our most popular lecturers, to speak on his recent exciting expedition to find the soursce of the Mekong River. Following discovery of a definitive and scientific source for the Yangtze in 2005, the China Exploration & Research Society team returned to the Tibetan plateau in Qinghai to pursue their next geographic feat in 2007, the long sought source of the mighty Mekong. The source of the Mekong has been wrapped in mystery and under dispute for many years. The Mekong flows through six countries, China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Defining the source has always therefore been of international importance. Explorers from France, UK, Japan and China all attempted to define it over numerous expeditions. Rafting expeditions had also challenged its headwater region. Using satellite images and with technical assistance from former NASA scientist Martin Ruzek, CERS followed the headwaters to both the spiritual source for local Tibetans and the geographic source at a glacier tongue. This involved the planning of a tenday horse ride. A sudden heavy summer snowstorm almost ended the expedition prematurely, but the weather cleared up just enough for the team to make it to the source. A variety of fascinating wildlife was also observed, led by CERS Science Director Dr. William Bleisch. Interviews were also made with nomad families at the source of the Mekong. At the tent belonging to the "first family" along the Mekong, a litter of Tibetan Mastiffs were bought and resettled at the CERS kennel on the edge of the plateau. These become part of the breeding stock of a CERS project to reintroduce thoroughbred mastiffs into more accessible parts of the plateau which have been depleted of its former stock. As always with Mr. Wong's lectures, this lecture is illustrated with stunning photography and also a short film. Wong How Man is Chairman of the China Research & Exploration Society. Being "China's most accomplished explorer", Time Magazine honoured Wong How Man as one of their 25 Asian Heroes in 2002. In a career spanning thirty years of exploration in remote China, Wong How Man is a veteran at the National Geographic, having led six major expeditions for the magazine. In 1985 and 2005, he discovered new sources for the Yangtze River. In 1986, he founded the China Exploration & Research Society, which expanded his exploration work to conservation of China's natural and cultural heritage. He has authored many books and his work has been featured often on CNN, National Geographic Channel and many other media. Members and their guests are most welcome to attend this lecture, which is HK$50 for Members, HK$100 for Members' guests and HK$150 for others.

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