The Zhi Qu (Tibetan) or Tongtian River (Chinese: 通天河; pinyin: Tōngtiān Hé), is a 1,012 km (629 mi) long, flows within Qinghai Province of northwest China. It is begins at the confluence of Tuotuo River and Dangqu River, it flows towards southeast and becomes a Jinsha River near the border of Qinghai and Sichuan. It is within the Yangtze River Basin—Chang Jiang drainage basin.
The Chinese name comes from a fabled river in the Journey to the West. In antiquity, it was called the Yak River. In Mongolian, this section is known as the Murui-ussu (lit. "Winding Stream"). and sometimes confused with the nearby Baishui.
The three principal headwaters—the Chumaer, Muluwusu, and Akedamu rivers—join to form the Tongtian River, which flows southeast to Zhimenda near the frontier between Qinghai and Sichuan provinces, where it becomes the Jinsha River (Jinsha Jiang).
The Jinsha River is a primary and westernmost tributary of the Yangtze River (Chang Jiang).
The Tongtian River is one of the five large rivers flowing from headwaters on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Its length is 1,012 kilometres, draining an area of 138,000 square kilometres. Pilgrims go to the river because it is mythical, but also it is known for its "sutra bridge" and "Gyiana Mani stones".
The Tongtian is planned for heavy development, primarily for hydroelectric power. As of March 2014 a total of 10 dams are planned for the river. Those dams are listed below from downstream to upstream.