Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Lijiang, Tiger Leaping Gorge

So now we are back in Lijiang.
We left you guys back in Dali a few days ago so now I have to catch up. Lijiang is another 200 km north of Dali and is another nice town (nicer than Dali) with Naxi culture everywhere. Naxi's are a group of people derived from the Tibetans (sort of) and indeed, this area is in the foothills of the Himalayas really close to the border with Tibet. Lots of people come up this way for a taste of Tibetan culture if they can't make it to the real thing. Definately doesn't have that "chinese" feel as we normally think of it. Small villages up in the dry dusty mountains. Lots of domestic tourists as they all seem to be obsessed with the Jade Dragon Snow mountain area around here. You should have seen their joy when they caught their first glimpse of it from the bus. It's just a mountain with snow on it, but then I guess we are spoiled at home.....
After 2 days wandering around the old town of Lijiang we made our way another 2 hours north to do the Tiger Leaping Gorge trek. It's 30 something km through one of (maybe "the") deepest gorges in the world. There is not much in the way of vegetation around there (dry, windy, dusty place) but being squashed between 2 mountains that are just over 5000 m each makes for some spectacular views. Hot and sunny for the thing, we all have some sunburns and I am happy to report that my feet and legs are still functional unlike the others.... We only hiked 4 or 5 hours each day but we will claim to be still getting in shape and thus it was hard. Sigh.....
Despite what you may read in later posts by the girls, we were not lost........ only temporarily delayed as a result of a map malfunction.
So we ended up spending 3 days away doing the trek and have just arrived back in Lijiang to nurse our wounds. The places we've been staying at have been very nice little family run guest houses. Very cheap and friendly. The food is good. The granny at the place here in Lijiang is absolutely hilarious but I will let the others talk about that. Mom has full conversations with her despite neither one speaking any of the other's language. I have managed to learn a few words finally.
Tomorrow we will move again, heading to Emei Shan (near Chengdu) north east of here. It'll be another all day bus ride and overnight train to get there so plenty of time to "rest" on the way.


At 3:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Typical guy....'I wasn't lost....'
You sound like Greg!
Glad you all are having a great time, know I'm super envious!

Tina :)


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