Wutai Shan Hiking - 20th June 2008 @ 11:14 am «   »

Location: China, Shanxi Province : Wutai Shan Hiking

Wutai Shan, or ‘The 5 Terraced Mountains’, is Buddhism’s sacred northern range and one of the 4 holy Buddhist mountains in China.

We are staying in the valley town of Taihuai surrounded by forested slopes leading up to the 5 peaks. The town is full of temples and monastaries – there are an absolute huge amount of them!

It was almost impossible to get any information on hiking in the area from our hotel, so we decided to just head for the bus station to see if there was any way to get to the North Terrace Peak. Before even getting there a local minibus stopped and offered us a ride to the Hongmen Rock Gate – at a price of course, but very reasonable. From there we were able to walk the rest of the way to the peak. This 9km stretch of relatively easy road took us just under 2 hours to reach the 3058m summit.

Before we even got to the top the weather started rolling in and the peak was completely cloud covered and very windy. We didn’t linger and after making the obligatory rock-pile as proof of our ‘massive achievement’ we started making our way down.

About 1km from the end of the trail some locals offered us a ride back to town – roughly 20km away. With it only being 2pm we tought it would be a nice extra to scale the somewhat smaller Dailuo Peak as an after-thought. It’s 1148 steps up to the monastery start right on the edge of town and we made it to the top in a record 25min.

With jelly-legs we strolled the confines of the small monastery and temple. It was a very peaceful scene with Buddhist Monks wondering around the grounds, burning incense and keeping the Chinese tourists in check. Since we got here we’ve only seen 2 other white faces – we love it and are almost dissappointed each time we do ;) We sat around and spent about half hour just people watching and taking photos of unsuspecting Monks.

We’re about to upload some more photos and will then sample more of the local cuisine (not including the chicken head & kidney bbq’d scewers on offer at street stalls!).

If you can’t see the slideshow above click here.

5 Responses to “Wutai Shan Hiking”  
Mamma van PE Says:

Ag julle neem die pragtigste fotos. Sulke inters angles.Mens kry so lus om daar te wees. julle tweetjies gaan lekker fiks en maer word van h/d trappe en stappe.
Kyk my ander boodskap. Mamma xx

Pa en Ma Deacon Says:

Hi julle twee

Ons het so gehoop julle gaan kans kry dat ons weer die naweek kon Skype. Ona het ‘n baie stil en rustige naweek gehad. Met almal gaan dit baie goed. Mamma het nou vir 3 weke lekker vakansie. Sune gaan vir babie vanoggend by Mamma los vir ‘n ruk – sy gaan haar hare of iets laat doen.`
Marizanne, tannie Riens wil weet of jy haar e-mail gekry het . Sy het dit blykbaar al ‘n hele ruk gelede vir jou gestuur.
Nou ja, julle moet steeds elke oomblik baie geniet en pas julle self baie mooi op.
Baie liefde
Ons twee

Brutus Says:

hello there, some impressive photos of the monks, play and the buidings. must be nice seeing so few westerners around too.
Tell me does WuTai Shan mean Wu Sacred Mountain? the tai shan bit rings a bell…

jan Says:

Hi Brett,

Wutai Shan means ‘Five Plateau Mountain’. I’m a bit disappointed in you, thought you would have used wikipedia for that piece of trivia ;)

The 5 are the North, South, East, West and Central peaks of which we only had time to climb the Northern one – obviously the highest!

jan Says:

Dankie vir die comments oor die fotos julle! Dis maklik om mooi fotos te neem as die scenery so mooi is :)