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Tiemenguan, Iron Gate Pass, lies 8 kilometers north of Korla at the mouth of a 14 kilometer long precipitous gorge. The pass is part of a section of the Silk Road which one traveled to reach Tarim Basin The pass lies in Tieguan Gorge which has been of strategic importance since ancient times. The Tang poet Cen Sen wrote a poem depicting the steepness of the pass.

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