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Walking China’s Silk Road

Ever since I saw a detailed map of the Silk Roads of Eurasia in Berkshire’s Encyclopedia of Modern Asia, I’ve been fascinated by this ancient trade route that also served as a network for exchanging cultures, ideas, and technology. In his wonderful article Silk Roads in the Berkshire Encyclopedia of World History, historian David Christian called these roads, “One of the most important of all long-distance exchange routes in human history.”

So it was a real treat to find that I could take a virtual walk on China’s Silk Road, courtesy of America on the Move, a website that encourages Americans to get and stay physically active. Right now, I’m almost at Jiayuguan, which is described as “a booming industrial city” with a backdrop of snow-capped mountains. I’ve got four more weeks to finish the challenge and complete the walk spanning more than 1,800 “virtual” miles (though only about 90 actual walking miles).

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