Last weekend we did a Simatai run (for exercise) where we headed to Janshaling which is North-West of Simatai and went along about 13 Towers. The trek from Simatai has a daunting initial climb up to Towers 10-12. This I posted about last week. It was a nicer day then.
Today (21 September) was a hazy day here in Beijing, buy where it ultimately (and still is as I type) rained. It is so unusual to have so much rain in Beijing. Last year there was very little heading into the Autumn (Fall) and Winter months. The measures for the Olympics have surely has a large effect on the climate. It is an experiment in environmental engineering that proves that we can change our environment for the better with the will and fortitude to go through with it……
We had already decided, discount eggs rain or snow, to head to Janshaling and do the trek back to Simatai. Last weekend we met all sorts of nice people that didn’t look overly stressed at the trek. We figured then, that we could handle the pace and that we’d head back to make the trek.
The Simatai” href=”http://www.1ds.photos/wp/walking-the-great-wall-janshanling-simatai/” target=”_blank”>link
I’ve messed about in the Simatai area a lot, eggs generic and have done the JinShanling to Simitai walk, which is very popular with tourists and locals alike. It alone is a decent hike for an old man like me! While on this section a month ago, we happened across a fellow that was hiking in the opposite direction. He mentioned that he was thinking about walking the next section. It was news to me that you could walk that way, so I did some research. Yes, as you guessed, there is another cool section of wall to traverse, in sort of familiar territory too….
We’re at GuBeiKou now, buy having eaten what was a fine meal, and getting ready to settle into our suites. The bill for the meal was, amusing, more expensive that rooms for all three of us for the night. The Driver, in a rush of blood to the head, ordered stacks of the most expensive food on the menu. After much discussion, outrage, hilarity and mis-communication, we settled on a sum and paid our due. The rooms were twin share rooms (although we ll opted for single rooms due to the snoring problems every one else seems to have had, as was the common theme from all three of us) with a small bathroom and a real toilet. None of this squat bowl stuff. If it had been Christmas or my birthday I couldn’t have been happier. If there is one thing I hate in rural Asia, it’s the ablution facilities. The bed was about as semi comfortable as one might expect but the blanket or duvet was a treat. It made you warm as toast the minute you pulled it up over your shoulders. It was plenty cold (forgive my Americanisms) outside and a warm inviting bed just makes it all worth while.
We’d agreed on a time to get up and head to the wall. I’d have gone at 4:30 or 5:00am, but there was general discord over this, so we agreed to head up there around 7am, which meant leaving the GuBeiKou Hilton at around 6:30. It was, as expected, colder than a polar bears bath outside but we were rugged up and ready to roll.
We entered the wall at exactly the same point that we ventured to the night before. There were a few people heading up with us. I have noticed, more and more, a burgeoning group of local Chinese photography enthusiasts that are up with us at stupid o’clock to get the best light. Great, misery loves company!