Published: July 30th 2012July 30th 2012
Saturday, July 28th
was the start of an epic adventure – we hopped on a bus at 7:30AM and headed up to Qiatou, a village on the edge of Tiger Leaping Gorge. At Qiaotou, we dropped off the bulk of our stuff and began the 5.5-hour hike into the gorge. Tiger Leaping Gorge is the tallest gorge over the Yangtze River and the views from the top are just spectacular. Unfortunately, getting to them means dealing with a fair bit of hiking – which for about the first 2 hours is a strenuous uphill climb. For this reason, there aren’t a lot of Chinese people up on the top trail – most of them take buses along the road at the bottom. But we’re tougher than that!!
The first two hours or so were quite brutal but I’d say they were worth it for the views we got. There are many guesthouses at the top so you have options for places to spend the night. We made it to Halfway House which is AMAZING and has INCREDIBLE views. We even had an amazing view right out our window! And the prices were actually really cheap – which is
surprising cause clearly they could gouge us since we have few other options! We spent an incredible evening watching the light move across the mountain. We also hung out with some fellow tourists we’d met on the bus from our hostel to the gorge, so that was fun. We went to bed pretty early since we were really tired from the hike!
Sunday, July 29th
, we woke up early again, had breakfast at the guesthouse, and headed back on the path. Unfortunately, we missed a turn and ended up taking an hour-long detour which set us back a bit on our hike. We hiked for 3 hours (should have been 2!) and finally made it to Tina’s Guesthouse, which is on the lower trail. From there you can access the Middle Gorge Trail but we decided we didn’t want to do so much hiking (it takes you down to the river and back up again – steep hiking) so we just walked down the road and found a nice spot with a great view of the river. We stayed there for a bit before heading back up to Tina’s for some food. I ordered an omellette, thinking
it would be a good way to recharge after so much hiking. Boy was I disappointed!! It was by far the saltiest omellette I’ve ever had and it was GROSS! That just put me in a bad mood. I am getting really, really sick of Chinese food. It’s all soooo over-salted and greasy. It’s driving me crazy!! I don’t even own salt back home and I want to just rid this country of salt. I’ve decided it’s time to learn to say ‘no salt’ when I order though I feel that that might cause me to get stared at even more…
After lunch we sat down and typed up our blog entries about Yunnan thus far. No internet but we could still type in Word.
At 3pm, we got on a bus to our next destination: Shangri-La! But before we could get to the bus, we had to take a truck to where there was a massive landslide on the road. We then hiked over the landslide and onto our bus. The bus was a bit crowded, especially after we stopped in Qiaotou and everyone got all their stuff. But it was good enough
A horseman joins our group
hoping one of us would get tired and hire him...but none of us did!
and we had some spectacular views along the way.
Yunnan is still awesome!!
There are more photos below