Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Anhui, part 5: Up Huangshan

We awoke to pure quiet and stillness. The highway outside our Tangkou hotel was empty. An hour later, there was an occasional horn honk, but not much at all compared to the night before.

We had a breakfast of porridge, egg, pickled vegetables, and shouting people. Chunlin wasn't satisfied, so she went to buy more bread, etc. Fried dough.

Soon our tour group from the day before (all staying at the same hotel) was herded up the street toward the bus depot. While on foot, it was easier for me to see which construction scaffolds were built with steel and which with bamboo.
l2 - Lashed Bamboo
Important stuff for an architect, you know.

At the bus depot, we met dozens of other with our same red hats and hundreds of other tourists in different colors, all filing onto the dozens of buses. Huangshan is a big production.

l4 - The Yellow Hats

We were taken to the New Yungu Cable Car and given the option of walking up the hill (about 4000' gain) or taking the cable car. We took the cable car.

l5 - New Yungu Cable Car

l7 - Up through the Mountains

l10 - New Yungu and Heavenly Capital Peak

l11 - New Yungu almost to White Goose Ridge

At the top, on White Goose Ridge, we followed the flow of humanity down the paved trail.

l13 - "Trail" Down from White Goose Ridge
Sometimes the trail isn't so much a trail as a long balcony full of steps. They managed to make it paved the same on top, so when you're walking, it always looks like you're on solid ground. It wasn't until we rounded the bend that I realized for how far we had been cantilevered.

The scenery was, as expected, exquisite.

l14 - Stalagmite Peak in the Distance

l17 - Down the Valley Southward

l23 - Stalagmite Peak Valley

l25 - Stairs and Beginning-to-Believe

l29 - Beginning-to-Believe Peak Trees

The tour guides were terribly loud, however, what with their electronic megaphones.

Lots of staircases. Crowded staircases. So be careful and show some comity!
l18 - Act of Comity

I've posted more photos on flickr, if you'd like to see them...

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