Our day began with a slow rise as we soaked up the opportunity for whatever electricity and wifi we could find for the unfinished chores. These chores include documenting the day, photos sifting, uploading, and continual research for what lies ahead. The workload has become a nice routine to close each day because, at this early stage of our expedition, there is a lot of shifting and changing until we can boil each system down. Most of this has been figuring out how to organize the photos and daily journal entries of each day to tell our story properly.
The Mahjong room of the hospital from the night before had gone cold in the night since we had not stoked the furnace. When the local guy and his kid from the night before showed up to see what we were up to, we realized we might be over-staying our welcome. We then wrapped up our cords and packed up our trailers. The boy was very helpful and had even figured out whose water bottle was whose. We shook hands with the local man who offered us the room and hit the road. As we left the village, frost was on the cars and grass patches, and a morning steam was rising from the fields and hillsides. The road led us down a valley following a stream. Leaves and needles rained down on us as the breeze and occasional gusts striped the trees of their summer attire. Most of the deciduous trees had already lost most of their leaves, and the deciduous conifers wore a bright orange coat of needles that gently fluttered to the ground.
We planned to take a route through a mountain pass that would lead us to the Maijishan Grottoes south entrance, but as we walked, we encountered no roads that would take us through the mountains. Thus our first “wrong turn” pushed us onward to walk around the mountains via a northern route encircling them to arrive at the north entrance of the park. Tonight we a nestled in a very small Inn that we walked right past only to end up backtracking and ask a local shushu for advice about a room. He pointed us further down the road from where we came. The room is nice and has a washing machine in it, but was not hooked up to a water supply. When we inquired about this, Ayi (Chinese for auntie) told us, “it’s too cold to wash now, they will not dry so much as freeze. Maybe in the morning.” At least now underwear is all labeled and ready to be mixed.
Distance: 21 km
Total Distance: 369 km
End: Yanziguan 燕子关 Hotel
Written by Pat