A breath of fresh air...and the clearest water
Trip Start Nov 09, 2005
32Trip End Ongoing
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Like everywhere in china it's been slightly spoiled by mass tourism. there's a huge resort with a milion coaches, and at 5 am every morning every one was making an incredible amount of noise in the hotel, (why can't chinese people communicate without shouting) but by seven the resort was a ghost town...until you get to the entrance of the reserve where a sea of people congregate to take a bus which drives the length of the reserve (about 150 km) so they can see all the sights of natural beauty without having to leave their air conditioned haven.
at the entrance we were handed our tickets, and on more than one occasion were told we had the wrong ones - we had to explain we wanted to walk, and all the staff were astounded - how can white people who can afford to take the bus, want to walk? They don't seem to appreciate that we came there to breath the fresh air and walk through the woods...so we had the luxury of taking the woodland path, which snakes around the lakes and waterfalls and pass tibetan style villages - although part of china, this is near tibet, and lots of tibetan people have created a community here. On the first day we walked for 12 hours, covering about 40 km. It was stunning, and boiling hot, by the end of the day we had resorted to dunking our heads in the ice cold river, and as we came back to the hotel we could barely move, our feet were so sore, and as we trudged along all the chinese looked at as like we were some kind of aliens...
Tried some yak, and ate in a tibetan tent, tnet was good, yak not so good, but a very useful creature - they make tents from it's hair, fire from the dried dung, milk cheese and butter, combs and hair clips from the horns, as well as trumpets and jewllery, also from the teeth, then they use the skins to keep warm in the bitter winters. If you're going to use and animal to live, that's the way to do it.