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Published: September 21st 2008
Tiger Leaping Gorge
The gorge view from the 28 bends
We left Lijiang in the morning and headed to the start of the Tiger Leaping Gorge. We knew we had to pack light but also with enough food and water to support us which meant we left the bulk of our luggage at the hostel in Lijiang. We set off at an easy pace in the morning and decided to do the high course instead of the low course. We were joined by Clancy (another Gapper) and two English speaking Shanghai people who were great because they spoke fluently and were very westernised. Me and Jess due to height lead most of the way walking up the incline at a fast past. On the way it was great because it was fresh air and no one trying to sell anything touristy. Unfortuently Hannah became ill on the journey and by the time we reached the first guesthouse we couldn't continue because she needed to rest. Which was actually good because it meant that we could relax and take it at a lesuirely pace for the rest of the journey. The Shanghai people continued on because of time restriction but we all ended up playing cards in the mountains
all night and then having an early rest before we started the dreaded and famous hardest part of the journey called the 28 bends.
We headed off after breakfast to the half way guest house, which is famous for its amazing views from all the rooms, in particular the toilet. When we approached the 28 bends it actually wasn't as bad as I had thought or anticipated. Every 5 or so bends I would take a quick breather but I got up there quite quickly. The view from the top of the bends made all of the walking worth it! It was amazing. The cliffs were great the view of the gorge was amazing, everything looked perfect like a postcard. After spending a good hour there we walked the rest of the way to our next stop over at the half way guest house. We took the couch and laid there and watched the mountains and the clouds slowly cover it all. Later a group of Gappers joined up which made a fun night. We had decided that the four of us wouldn't continue early in the morning walking with them but rather we would sleep
Standing on the edge
in and watch the view for the morning.
After eventually getting off the couch we said goodbye to our guest house and headed towards the end of the trek. We had to cross over this waterfall, which was yes very dangerous and explains why so many people die every year from climbing the gorge. But we did it at a slow pace. After reaching the end we relaxed as much as possible which was good because the car ride to the start of the trek was horrible. Land slide on the bottom where so bad that we had to get out of the van and climb over a landslide to get to a connecting van. And the van driver was going a million miles per hour and all we could think was this will be the end. Amazingly we made it in one piece but we were glad we would never have to do that again! We made it back to the start and caught another van back to Lijiang where we would basically sleep as much as possible!
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