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  • It's one of the world's greatest engineering wonders the great wall of China

  • They say it can even be seen from space

  • It's a military masterpiece that has witnessed hundreds of battles yet it still holds many mysteries

  • British writer and Historian William Lindsay has lived in China for 20 years exploring the great [wall] has become his lifetime obsession

  • Lindsay has spent thousands of days on has walked thousands of kilometers [and]

  • Is the great [war] really how many years did it take to build?

  • And why was it built to talk crap on [salary] or Roll to your quarters?

  • It's only a short trip from beijing to one of China's most popular attractions

  • Millions of tourists come here every year to see the stone dragon the great wall of China

  • Most of the people walking on the great war here today will go home and say I've been to the great wall of China

  • But the great [wall] is not a place it ranges across the sub-continental expanse of [North] China

  • And along its course

  • many of the locations seldom visited

  • And some virtually unknown

  • in 1987 [busy] fulfilled his childhood dream

  • He walked on the Chinese war two thousand seven hundred kilometers

  • Only a few pictures remain from this adventure because his films were repeatedly confiscated foreigners were barred from many parts of China

  • Those times have long changed

  • China has opened up to the world and an adventure has turned into a scholar

  • [Lindsay] now seeks out traces of the [great] [wall] of [China] right across the country

  • 23 years after his first trip he sets off again

  • during the same

  • exploring 23 years later is really a testament to the

  • immensity of

  • What we call the [great] [wall] of [China]

  • [will] be [our] [hearts] in the last two-and-a-half decades. I explored the warm or 1700 days

  • [I've] discovered. It's the world's most famous building, but the least-known there's always something new to discover

  • there is

  • there is no single great warm there are lots of words in Northern China built by different dynasties for more than

  • 2,000 years

  • William Lindsey is taking us to one of the most remote places

  • 2300 Kilometer Drive, West of Beijing to the City of doing one

  • into the Gobi desert

  • [clearly] that 75 miles Northwest of don't want

  • And it's a nice sunny day in the gobi doesn't perfect conditions for exploring the great wall

  • In the shimmering heat the dark Ribbon along the Horizon at first looks like a mirage, but these really are the remains of a war

  • literally in the middle of nowhere

  • Well one of the most precious parts of the [great] [wall] of [China]. This is the hand war hell 2100 years ago

  • And [I'm] not the first traffic to come here. This is the silk Road

  • So merchants would come from the deserts in Central, Asia

  • entering [China] at this point and then

  • Proceed East to the Heartland of [China]

  • So it's going to take a closer look

  • Built over 2,000 years ago this wall looks completely different to the familiar Great [warley] efficient. It's not built of stone

  • But this construction material has kept its strong for Millennia read and gravel

  • But who [is] this war meant to protect so far from Civilization?

  • the Han Dynasty

  • Rulers wanted to open Their empire to trade with the West

  • So they secured control of the eastern end of what became known as the silk Road?

  • the Han Chinese

  • occupied the vital [if] [she] colony

  • That runs along the road between them more than steps and the [himalayan] hotels

  • It's a real border not just between peoples, but between lifestyle

  • the Nomads of the Step vignettes traditional round tent

  • They live entirely from their livestock [wandering] over the step they pitch there. Yes, wherever they find grazing land for their herds

  • after enduring long hard winters in the steps these nomadic warriors ransacked China's Northern provinces

  • Year after year they killed [road] stealing food and metals everything their lifestyle prevents the producing

  • The Chinese regarded their empire as the cradle of civilization

  • According to their confusion philosophy it was the cultural center of the world

  • Appeasing the Barbarians along the water by trading is out of the question

  • [all] was too expensive so the harm emperor decided to build a wall

  • How many people were involved in the construction of the harm or no one knows for sure?

  • Reliable sources quote the calculations presented to the emperor

  • If one soldier can build three [places] of war in one month than 300 and build three [leap] about one-and-a-Half kilometres

  • That means a thousand Li were about [500] [30] kilometers would take a hundred thousand men one month to complete

  • So far so good

  • and so many

  • Most of the soldiers were stationed at the towers the towers had a dual use that made the most effective defense

  • [the] Beacon town behind me was not only the perfect vantage

  • Point [four] guards on this frontier to watch for the enemy coming from the north [it] was a signaling station

  • So when the animal was cited this beacon would have been ignited

  • This is how it worked as soon as a guard spotted nomadic warriors

  • He transmitted smoke signals by Daylight, or Beacon fires at night

  • The alarm was communicated along the wall to [Garrison's] located in the Hinterland

  • How long is the ham war only recently have [Chinese] experts started to find?

  • Join the local archaeological survey ting

  • taking part in a national survey

  • to locate dynasty

  • A team is heading out into the [gobi] desert. They need a whole summer just to measure this section

  • At noon the temperature can decline to the 40 degrees celsius?

  • Today the team is exploring a fortification that lies in the hinterland of the [hardwar]

  • This could have been a Garrison for support Troops

  • Today the remains are hardly visible

  • Right here, and [that's] all you guys hear this tower has a name

  • it's called half Tower obviously because half the tower is missing the team here today to locate the

  • Fortifications with GPS and wondering how they're going to measure the height because it's so Crumbly, [Alaska]

  • needs a [Ma]

  • Their dog are high challenge you [were] you another Paula [only] all [touchy] you are so that?

  • You can get that [other] [players] are

  • Only used for year [and] [will] not cold weather are

  • So they don't have to have to climb up the tower to measure it. They have a device here

  • [right] here

  • Hey the laser rangefinder Connects the data

  • It will be a Few years before the results of the survey are

  • summarized and a figure can be given for the length of the harm war

  • The challenge opens a lot of your body are [organized] [or] so from here to the Jade gates is about

  • 45 50 kilometers

  • And there are three sections of war that are quite visible

  • And in between there's virtually nothing although the archaeologists may find traces

  • Mr.. Young is very little reluctant to give a guesstimate of how many kilometers of hand wall standing

  • [GPS], team Leader, Mr.

  • [jung] has given William

  • directions to a place in the desert where the wall has a unique shape it's a 16 kilometres hike so william is buying provisions for

  • The trip but don't [want] market

  • well

  • Roll Mate would be very good chance in the desert

  • [yeah]

  • A lot of what he sees doesn't seem too useful for a desert trick, but he finally finds what he needs

  • successful shopping trip for 199 also put supply of High-energy foods

  • Delicious.

  • Next morning, and find the clock [Lindsay] sets off for the hike

  • also select

  • It's 14.4 K so it's about

  • 99 miles or more he's not walking alone in the desert it would be too dangerous

  • With him is his Chinese friend

  • El cajon [sun] coming [up] that their GPS says they will reach the unique strip of wall in five hours

  • [yeah]

  • It's cool. No, but the Sparse vegetation is [tinder-dry] there hasn't been any rainfall here for months

  • [then] walking in the featureless landscape can see a solitary tree over

  • in 87

  • [I] just had a big [mouth] for the whole country

  • Basically my journey along the wall from the desert to the sea

  • Was like that

  • 1700 miles not the ideal [Map] for [Hiking] across desert Grassland

  • It's nearly noon and the sun is burning, but finally they arrived at the place. They've been looking for there it is

  • right that

  • [lasted] [A]

  • great

  • Act brand for William it's already worth the trip even the five hours back amazing. Hey

  • Look at that fantastic

  • Of all the faces that the great wall of China house, this is the rarest of [them] [off]

  • This wall is made of wood

  • He has six layers of branches there

  • and

  • And in between minimal use of the gravel, so I'm really glad I've come here today well worth the 10 mile track

  • Leaving the doing one region and making his way D stand on the ancient silk Road Williams aiming for a town called [John] [Glenn]

  • The Historic site is five kilometers out of town

  • And the best view is from the sky

  • a giant castle guarding the [wall] built in 1539 by judging emperor of the Ming Dynasty

  • The main Emperor's contempt for the Nomads reached protest proportions with the demand that the character [g]

  • Standing for Barbarians should be written as small as possible

  • After the han Dynasty other dynasties rose and fell many of them built walls, but none of any significant length

  • Me emperor [genius] [ended] the Dragon throne in 1521

  • He renewed the [hun] tradition established in ancient times

  • Constructing a long wall of the Northern border with its westernmost point at the jog one pass

  • [Jaguar] translates as a barrier to the Pleasant Valley and Pleasant Valley means China

  • This gigantic fault is built in the foothills of the himalayas

  • In the courtyard the mighty walls form a kind of maze to stop invaders in their tracks

  • And there's a wonderful legend about its construction

  • To Avoid wastage of materials prior to construction of the fortress the architect was asked to calculate exactly how many bricks

  • required be computed

  • [999999] the Bricks were delivered the fortress built and at the end the chief of works

  • Confronted the architect with a brick and said this is wasted, but the architect was too smart

  • He said no I factored that into the equation

  • That brick should be placed over the portal and it will bring

  • All the guards in the fortress and all of those travelers passing under its portals good fortune

  • 600 Years later the Leftover Brick still remains

  • [yeah]

  • [yeah]

  • Next to the fort is the starting point of the wall constructed by the [way]

  • This wall has nothing in common with the brick and stone

  • [it's] made of rammed the [loads] more than 400 years old and still in good shape and [its] still wide enough to walk

  • [yeah]

  • On his walks along the Walls [William] [Lindsay] soon Learned. He could count on receiving warm hospitality from the farmers among the wedding

  • Before coming to China my family and friends were very concerned in

  • 1987 going to [China] the big

  • Communist country on the other side of the world all the people going to be friendly

  • And I didn't have a support crew with me on [dependent] on Farmers. [I] discovered very early on the farmers were my

  • great

  • allies even with very little [Chinese]

  • But a lot of sign language and smiling [I] got what I needed food water shelter without them

  • I couldn't have been successful Asean come on

  • I seea even if many is unkind understand why a foreigner should be so interested in the wall

  • Then this is no monument, but simply a part of the village and one with a perfectly practical use

  • I was asking my er the these holes in the wall. I thought they were nasty but in fact

  • Previously the farms were right up against the wall, so [they're] wooden

  • Beams going into the wall, but the great wall experts the cultural heritage protection authorities

  • requested the Farmers to

  • Destroy those buildings and move back in [order] in order to protect the national heritage if you want to know how many

  • Dynasty [Mason's] constructed their [wall] more than 400 years ago [what] you have to do is keep your eyes open

  • even today

  • Chinese Farmers build walls of the same way their ancestors did they tempt the earth in a wooden case [if]

  • temp put layer on layer

  • They even sing the traditional folk songs passed down from their forefathers

  • A house is not complete without a wall around it

  • [says] an old Chinese proverb

  • My friend Tran is building this wall to and closed his compound, so this is the final piece of work

  • and

  • This is embedded in Chinese

  • Architectural tradition

  • whether it's a compound

  • For a village or a kingdom it must be enclosed

  • completely safe

  • They built up most of the men wore just like this is a [rounder] [swore]

  • Imagine how many billion [birds] it took?

  • [Georgia] guns on each [Unger] Tower 10 sure

  • Busy Long-ago

  • Oh, I hated [husband] the singing is an important part of the work. It keeps all the rappers

  • And staff the beat

  • So another [Lauren] step going along the wall [get] into a rhythm

  • and

  • the actual content

  • or

  • I've been trying to 23 here is where this guy has [a] really [heavy] [accent]

  • [it's] a bit difficult, but that it's definitely a kind of wrap

  • [it] changes the words and occasionally hear them chuckle

  • So I think [he] gets a little dig in about those that are kind of falling behind in

  • Distance or maybe he can tell by the [third's] if someone is answered

  • This group of about twenty farmers mostly women took a day to erect about 27 meters of war

  • We don't know if their ancestors could have worked better or faster

  • But we do know they would have used the same materials and tools

  • except [for] the tractors carrying the clay

  • and the cell phones [by] [Dover]

  • [Scylla], Ola

  • [yeah]

  • On his Journey along the Walls of China

  • Williamses looking eastwards out of the [He-she] corridor and turning North along the great wall of the ming Dynasty

  • into the [great] [gloop] of the [Yellow] [River] the cradle of China's civilization

  • This has always been the Gateway for the Nomads to Enter China

  • Here the wind and weather have done their worst the wall and its towers can still be made out on the cracks of the river

  • The Garrison Forts with the outpost of this defensive outer warm today. They use is strictly [non-military]

  • [yeah]

  • [yeah]

  • [ok]

  • [I] love staying in the countryside

  • This building. It's made of thick blocks of limestone and on the roof this stuff when you come here winter

  • [no] good method for keeping you warm see this

  • [it's] not that it's called the Camp [Kng]

  • And they put the fuel and here light it can do the cooking here

  • You've got a nice warm bed for the night

  • So I got full board and lodging

  • Breakfast morning and dinner this evening and lunch coming up soon for less than ten dollars

  • [ha]

  • I should apologize for the slurping it's part and parcel of eating in China

  • Considered sound of an appreciation

  • The ingredients of the Lunch [William] is appreciating today also the reason the Nomads raided the land of the yellow River throughout

  • the 16th Century

  • [yeah] in the year 1549 the barbarians come to plunder