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  Crossing the Grasslands
Updated: 2004-06-25 15:30

Next, they had to cross over the grasslands. It was a five to seven day journey across an inland Sargasso Sea, which lies on the eleven-thousand-foot plateau between the watersheds of the Yangzi and Yellow Rivers. It looks innocent, but it was a deadly trap for the unwary. It was covered with flowers but beneath the flowers lurked bogs that could swallow a man in a minute. Also, there were no people, no food, and no firewood to cook. The temperatures were just above freezing. The grass roots shifted with each step. The muck was not only slippery, it was like glue. Once in it, you sank deeper and deeper. The more you struggled, the faster you went down. Once they found a pig and ate it. The following troops ate the pigskin left by the leading troops. Mao lost more men the in the Grasslands than in the Snowies.



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