The oldest and largest ancient building in the Three Gorges region, Huangling Temple, formerly known as Yellow Ox Temple, sits on a piece of flat land on the southern bank of the Yellow Ox Gorge within the Xiling Gorge.
Legend has it that Yu the Great was leading people fighting against floods. But for eight years, they could not find an outlet for the floods, which were always blocked by the mountains. Later, Yu the Great got help from a yellow ox, the incarnation of God of the Earth, who gored mountains apart, and ploughed up a gorge. Reluctant to leave the local people and the land that he had come to love so much, the god changed into a sky-high ox rock.
People offered sacrifices to the yellow ox in thanks and, to memorialize this event, built a temple called Yellow Ox Temple in Spring and Autumn Period. The main structure in this temple is the Hall of Yu the Great. The ox rock is over 1,000 meters high, seen from a distance in the sun rays, it looks like a dusky statue of a sturdy man heroically leading an ox forward.