The city government of Jiyuan, where the Wangwu Mountain National Geopark is located, has plans to apply for world geopark status for the park.
The national geopark is composed of four park areas: the Tiantan Mountain (Heavenly Temple Mountain), Heilong (Black Dragon) Gorge, the Three Gorges of the Yellow River, and the Wulong (Five Dragons) Estuary, with a total area of 1,170 square kilometers and a core area of 463 square kilometers.
Wangwu Mountain is known for its marvelous geological structure and landscape as well as its charming scenery and sites of human interest.
At the national assessment meeting on world geopark applicants held on October 16, 2005, Wangwu Mountain Geopark ranked second among all domestic competitors. Since then, the Jiyuan city government has been looking forward to add a world geopark title to its already long list of honours.
The geopark officials have submitted the required world geopark application material to the Ministry of Land and Resources. In addition, brand-new guide boards and signs have been planted in each of the park areas, with a few tour courses carefully designed for sight seeing and popularization of science.
The geological museum, which was built in 2004 in line with national geopark standards, is now undergoing improvement.
Relevant local departments have been motivated to renovate the surrounding areas of the geopark. A program has been launched to offer all-round training to local tour guides and guesthouse staff.
The geopark's authorities even plan to invite domestic geological experts to carry out a simulated field study to identify shortcomings and correct them at an early stage.
The Wangwu Mountain Geological Museum, situated at the foot of the mountain, consists of five showrooms and five squares. They are the exhibition halls of the earth, ocean and dinosaurs, a multi-purpose hall and a multi-media showroom, as well as the entry square, and the squares of the Proterozoic Era, Palaeozoic Era, Mesozoic Era and the Cenozoic Era.
The museum showcases the process of the earth's evolution and the geological history of the mountain.
One can learn of the long-standing geological history and splendid culture of Wangwu through a combination of display boards, models and multimedia.
Thanks to its role in popularizing geological sciences, the museum has become an important part of the geopark's experiencing education base for youngsters in Henan Province.
With some areas dating back more than 2.5 billion years, Wangwu earns a lot of attention from geologists. Its well-preserved strata provide rich information about significant geological events.
Mount Wangwu and the Yellow River are closely linked to each other as on one hand they are an integral whole geologically, and on the other ancient Chinese people worshipped mountains and rivers.
One of the nine famous mountains in ancient China, Wangwu remains a holy site of Taoism, an indigenous Chinese religion founded in the Eastern Han Dynasty (AD 25-220).
It is the mountain referred to in the household Chinese fable the Foolish Man Moving Mountains which advocates a spirit of perseverance. Today, the descendants of the "unwise" old man living at the foot of the Wangwu continue to foster this spirit, trying to tame nature and improve their lives.
In addition to the natural scenery and cultural landscape, the geopark is blessed with rich reserves of coal, aluminium, iron and copper.
It is also regarded as a huge gene pool of seeds, with various rare species such as maidenhair trees, mono maples and taxus.
Last but not least, 18 groups of more than 3,000 Taihang macaques live in the forests here, making it a State-class Taihang macaque protection zone.
(China Daily March 31, 2006)