Third time’s a charm, right? Finally, our third try at planning a weekend to climb 黄山, Huangshan, a range with China’s tenth tallest mountain peak, it all worked out. And we couldn’t have asked for a better trip. Everything just worked out, found all necessary travel vehicles, beautiful weather, no injuries. It was just so good.
In order to maintain integrity here, I feel the need to clarify that by “climbing” I actually mean walking up a lot of steps, there were no ropes or carabineers involved. But let me tell you, there were a lot of steps. A lot lot. So I still feel that climb is a valid term. We were able to get up to the tallest peak, Bright Summit, the first evening we were there.
After dinner, we decided it would be a really good idea to climb the second tallest peak yet that night, in the dark, and then spend the night on the top (notice a hint of sarcasm there on the “really good idea”). The climb, highly dependent on the flashlights we had just bought, actually turned out quite fun. The quiet night you hear, or don’t hear, at the top of a mountain isn’t something you can get anywhere else. Sleeping on top, on the other hand, not so much fun. Someone had mentioned earlier that rocks hold heat, so we would be just fine temperature-wise through the night. I tried to say that this was, in fact, not true. Although no one agreed with me at the time, after spending five hours trying to overcome the shivering and cuddling together in an attempt at getting a few winks of sleep, they were much more willing to agree on the fact that rocks do not hold heat. But being the only people at the top of Lotus Peak to witness the sunrise was worth the awful night.
Many many stairs back down, and my calves have never hurt so much in my life.
But overall good first mountain experience for this girl. However, I left my favorite (not to mention only..) Brewers hat at the top of the mountain. A replacement would make a lovely welcome home present! Hint to Mom & Dad =)
Here are a few more pictures, but no picture could truly capture the beauty He created here.