Thursday, August 19, 2010

Anhui, part 7: Turtle Cave

After lunch, our tour group hiked over to the Turtle Carrying the Golden Turtle, a curious rock formation.
l54 - At the Back of the Turtle

l56 - The West Sea Is Empty

It was actually easier to see the turtle-on-giant-turtle from back on Bright Summit Peak, but it was a nice outcropping for viewing the rest of the mountains. Views all directions from the vast expanse of bare rock.

l57 - Turtle Peak and Lotus Peak

Such as back to Bright Summit Peak...
l63 - Bright Summit Peak from the Turtle

And down to the trail we would soon be on.
l60 - Ladder on the Clouds
This particular section of "trail" is called the Ladder on the Clouds. There were no clouds around, but it sure felt like a ladder!

We decided not to climb to the top of Lotus Peak.
l61 - The Peak of Lotus Peak
Plenty others did, though.

Instead, we descended toward Turtle Cave.
l65 - To Turtle Peak or Turtle Cave?
In this small canyon near the head of the big turtle, we experienced a major traffic jam. Hundreds of people patiently (for the most part) waiting to get in a single line to descend the steep staircase.

l68 - Traffic Jam at the Turtle

l71 - Turtle Traffic Jam
Not even the Chinese subways had pedestrian traffic jams this horrible, although the automobile traffic on Beijing expressways was comparable...

Oh well. Look at the scenery.
l69 - Big Turtle Nose

l67 - Turtle Rhody

l70 - Rocks and Lotus

Chunlin occasionally had English come to her lips quicker than Chinese, even when she was trying to speak Mandarin. I would say "Chinese" to remind her...

Eventually it was our turn to descend the narrow, steep staircase to Turtle Cave.
l76 - Turtle Cave
The stair-trail doubled back just like it was in a building. We went through the cave and out the opening. With the steps and handrails and whatnot, the cave no longer seemed particularly natural.

And one more look up at nearby Turtle Peak.
l78 - Up to Turtle Peak

More photos on flickr, per the usual.

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