Yarchen Gar, founded in 1985, is the other great "monastic encampment" in the world after Larung Gar. It is located in an isolated valley at 4000 meters above sea level in Baiyu County, Sichuan Province, China. Encircled by mountains, it is a four-hour drive from the nearest town, more than a hundred kilometers of snow-capped mountain roads. Because of the remoteness, very few tourists arrive here, allowing monks to practice and meditate peacefully.
The only men allowed to live on nuns' island are children. They come to Yarchen Gar following their older sister or other female relatives in the family. Adult monks live on the other side of the Qushui River where narrow wooden bridges connect the two areas. Even in common lectures, monks and nuns are strictly separated.
In winter, when the school year is over, nuns must continue their practice of asceticism every day in a one-cubic-meter wooden hut located on the hillside faced to the island. Except eating and drinking, nuns sit and meditate during daytime, still and silent. The asceticism lasts a hundred days. Moreover, less than 1% of nuns earn the approval from Lama Akhyuk Rinpoche, Founder of Yarchen Gar, for having completed the practice. Most of the nuns spend between 3 to 10 years to practice asceticism.