Anna and Dennis' Most Excellent Journey
Trip Start Feb 23, 2006
160Trip End Jun 24, 2009
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Jiuzhaigou is an incredibly beautiful place. It has everything that I love about nature treks: babbling brooks, raging streams, waterfalls galore, crystal clear lakes, snow capped mountains, forests... The only problem is that it's extremely accessible to the common man which means loads of tour buses drop off loads of people that otherwise would not be able to visit such a place. The trails have all been replaced with wooden planks covered with mesh metal grates. At first, I really hated the planks, but after awhile I started to like them. Instead of having to look down all the time while hiking through the forest, you can just stroll along and keep your eyes peeled on what you came there to see without worrying about falling on your face. Unfortunately, all the wildlife also know where you scary humans are and keep their distance. It was rare to see even a bird or squirrel after walking through the nature park for 2 days, but it didn't matter when you saw all the beautiful scenery around you. It's all about sustainable mass tourism. The University of California and Washington have been consulted in how to minimize the impact of such large numbers of tourists visiting the park each year. It's estimated that there is enough accommodations around the park for up to 20,000 visitors a day. If you are trying to decide whether to go or not, go and go now. It's worth the trip. Just try to think outside the box so you can avoid the hordes of tourists running in packs all over the park.