Travelogues .............................................................................................................................

Alice in Hua Shan
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Editor: Robyn from UK  Edited Date:2006-8-2 20:03:08   Visitors:2618   
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Hua Shan is only a short trip out of Xi'an and a highly recommended journey, if for example you are awaiting Tibet permits. It's quite an adventure to get out there as no one can be sure when the bus leaves but if you have the will, as we did, you will make it.

The walk up is not too hard and a round trip can be done in a day. However, we spent 3 days and i recommend this as there is so much to take in. The scenery is stunning and the accomodation acceptable-great. The walk up is puncuated by hilarity if you find signs sich as 'Caution: Stone' at all amusing when surrounded by it. The mountain is managed well and stone rubbish bins and eco friendly messages dot the path. Rubbish men are constantly passing with tourist waste from the top. A good sign.

Hua Shan is a Daoist Mountain and has a special feel to it. A few monks were to be found whitling walking sitcks and selling fortunes in a cliff side temple. We stopped at a rest station like the few other hikers for a hit of Chinese white spirit or red bull, what ever takes your fancy. I was content with water. The impossible stairs were a highlight; 100 or so calved into the rock at about 75 degrees. Tricky to nagivate but thoroughly entertaining as we considered the opposite perspective that we were infact walking down instead of up, and after allowing our brains to compute that, we ended up seeing down as we looked up. Wonderland indeed and made for some creative photos.

The first night was spent at North Peak in comfort with electric blankets. After walking the circuit of West and South Peaks we bedded down at East Peak for a busy sunrise with a host of loopy chinese tourists who had walked up though the night and a smattering of westerners. A very introspective journey and one well worth the effort.

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