Lush Mountain Panoramas of Qiyun Shan
Trip Start Jan 01, 2005
756Trip End Ongoing
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Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya,
This night finds me out on the balcony of the Ancient Street Youth Hostel chatting to two very cute girls, one a traveller from Germany who is here for a month and the other a Malaysian medical student who has been here for three and a half years. The night is slowly becoming more and more humid not just because they are cute but there actually was a gentle breeze that was keeping us cool before but now it seems to have gone in search of a more cool place for itself to wisp, whirl and play..
The typhoon that hit and is causing widespread damage and death in southern China has sent its angry storm clouds our way. Last night and it poured and it has continued all day today.
This night (Monday, 10th) was supposed to find me in Jiangxi Province but when I woke this morning to find rain so hard that I couldn’t see out my window I rolled over and fell back to sleep until well after midday. By then there were no more buses to Wuyuan so once again I rolled over and fell back to sleep until six in the evening. I then decided that I really should rise, shine and do something with my last night in the Huangshan area.
Of course I didn’t do anything except slowly walk down town.
I then pulled up a chair on this here balcony!
For those who are thinking of coming to China and have only limited time then I do believe I have the place for you, Anhui Province! Base your self in Tunxi town and you will have something new to do each day for the next week or two. You can climb, you can raft, you can climb, you can hike, you can relax, you can climb, you can ride, you can eat western food, you can eat Huizhou food, you can climb, you can eat Chinese food, you can drink western beer and you can also drink Chinese beer.
And just in case I forgot to mention it, you can also climb.
You can pretty much do anything you wish here in southern Anhui Province.
I actually had no idea that it was going to be this way, I thought I’d come and climb Huangshan and then scamper to a new spot but here I can still be found nearly ten days later and there are still things I can see and do if I wished to stay longer. I don’t want to leave and I honestly will miss being here. It is not that often a 'spot’ hits me like this so it makes it all the more difficult to leave but tonight the bar will soon close and I will have to finish my last ice cold Corona with lime and then slowly wander towards home until a pedicab driver accepts my small payment of four or five Yuan back to the train station.
I will then silently sit in the back looking out at the world wondering if this really is me living this life or will I wake up when my alarm wakes me to get up for work back in the law courts in Australia. Let’s hope not shall we!
I will miss my slow and silent ride home that allows a soft breeze to ruffle my feathers.
I know some of you are wondering what in the world could be left for me to do here in the Tunxi area but today I had the most amazingly wonderful day climbing Qiyuan Shan mountain which just to let you know, can in no way can be compared to the mythical Huangshan.
Qiyunshan stands at only five hundred and eighty meters and is an easy climb and one can easily spent an entire afternoon walking its pathways. The climb begins at a small village where you will not be able to stop yourself from taking more than enough photos of and from the ancient stone bridge that takes you across the river. Once across turn right and say many happy hello’s to the local villagers in return for your passing through their village and then begin your journey up the mountain. The climb took just over half an hour and its not until you reach the top that you have to pay your 75 Yuan entrance fee.
I have no idea how much the cable car is as I walked both up and down.
The mountain, long venerated by Taoists, the reddish sandstone rock provides a mountain home to the temples and monks who tend to the, while mountain trails lead people such as you and I through some stupendous scenery (LP).
At the top I was surprised at what I actually found as I thought it would simply be a small mountain climb with a temple to visit and then back down the other side. After viewing the ruins of what was once a small yet grand palace I found that there were plenty of tablet and stone inscriptions to be found on the mountain top. Once there were over one thousand four hundred of them but now only four hundred and sixty or so remain for the public to view.
At the very top of the mountain I was more than surprised to find a fully functioning village in which you can spend time browsing through the many stores cluttered with this and that. The main thoroughfare, Yuehua Street is filled with simple yet elegant Hui-styled houses and scattered among them can be found some Taoist temples built against the mountain.
I thought about but forgot to see if you could actually spend the night here.
From here I headed up to what is called ‘The Highest Peak’ and it’s called this simply because it is the highest peak. Don’t try to take that away from it as ff you were an eldest child would you like someone calling you the middle child? No of course you wouldn’t so let’s all sit comfortably happy with the originality of the name it was given.
I then decided to walk the ring path around the summit during which I met a happy family who were just coming down from visiting So and So’s Fort. Thankfully they informed me that it wasn’t worth the steps it took to get there and we then slowly made our way to the next signpost. The father was an English Teacher and I found out that they were from a town far away, but they called it near by as they loved the area so much they wanted to be included in it.
They asked me if I would like to join then on their adventure down the hill.
So I decided to pass the temples I had not visited to spend some time with them.
We walked down the western side of the mountain and at the foot of the mountain we found ourselves amongst the greenest of green rice fields. It was like heaven walking through them to the river where we all decided to board a bamboo raft (18 Yuan) upon which we slowly drifted towards the ancient stone bridge we all began our beautiful adventure on.
For those how either don’t have the money or have missed out on climbing Huangshan (mainly due to the present expense and/or bad weather), and believe me I met much far more than I expected to meet here both in the Youth Hostel and walking along the streets, then a good itinerary would be to do a village or two in the morning and then Qiyun Shan in the afternoon as it is on the way back from Xidi and Hongcun Village.
Beers N Noodles toya…..shane
The soundtrack to this entry was by the Foo Fighters
The album was ‘The Color And The Shape’
Qiyunshan Mountain is located in the west of Xiuning County of Anhui province and is thirty three kilometers away from Huangshan Mountain. Anhui-Jiangxi Railway goes across Qiyunshan Town. According to the record of Qiyunshanzhi, the peaks of Qiyunshan Mountain were once always densely surrounded by mist, fogs and clouds so it was once called Baiyue, which in English means The White Mountain.
Qiyunshan Mountain Scenic Zone features cliff stone carvings, Taoist culture and Danxia landform and the total scenic area is one hundred and ten square kilometers. There are thirty six peaks in total, forty four strange rocks, eighteen caves, sixteen pavilions or dais, five stone bridges, thirty three temples, five hundred and thirty seven stone carvings and stele inscriptions and fourteen pools and ponds etc. Taoism appeared in Qiyunshan Mountain in Tang dynasty and it was flowering during Ming dynasty during which it was known as the No.1 Taoist Mountain.
Now it is one of the four Taoism Mountains in China.