Tiger Leaping Gorgeous

Trip Start Mar 06, 2006
Trip End Dec 22, 2006

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Friday, August 11, 2006

So, we had a taste of the outdoors from Dali and so it was that we headed for Lijiang which is a base for lots of fun in the mountains. High on Jen Ab's and my list of "must do" was Tiger Leaping Gorge. (The other 2 didn't fancy it beacuse the LP says it can be a touch sketchy at this time of year - pah!)

It's a well known trek along, you guessed it.. a gorge, which takes 2 days or so. It was absolutely fantastic, although the weather was really hot so we were a touch on the mingin' side at the end of each day. We climbed to 2670m on our first day, up the notorious 28 bends which would have been ok if it wasn't for the heat. Then it was another couple of hours til shower, beer, food and sleep (roughly in that order). Second day was much the same, early start, lots of walking and great views. Only difference being that we descended right into the gorge itself to see the middle gorge and the Yangzi river in full flow - boss. Jen loved the climb back up, which really should have had ropes and harnesses included!

Whilst Jen and I were playing in the hills, the other 2 were off in (very high!) cable cars to Snow mountain to see a glacier, making friends with numerous friendly Chinese people and riding bikes around villages. They also found the only guesthouse in this small village, Baisha, that's touristy in the day but super quiet at night. This was a great respite from yet more bloody Chinese tour groups (they really were "out of control" in Lijiang) and we got to meet Dr Ho (83 yr old medicine man who's apparently cured a man's leukemia and told Michael Palin that he has weak "chi") and play badminton with the locals after dinner. A crackin place.

Next day was more bike riding up very steep hills and round ancient towns - we might get reasonably fit at this rate - before a night flight into Cheng Du, Sichuan province.
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