Huangshan 黄山, Yellow Mountain

If you wish seek the majestic peaks in China, then travel to Huangshan, Yellow Mountain.
Pick the time wisely!

The mountain is named for the famous Yellow Emperor and is renowned for the dramatic mountainous landscape depicted in Chinese paintings. Of the four most famous mountains in China, it is said that once you experience Yellow Mountain, all the rest will pail in comparison.

We wanted to experience this sense of wonder and misty peaks from photos we had seen.
Only problem was so did everyone else!
We were warned that instead of seas of clouds, we would experience seas of people, but we only have the four days of this “Tomb Sweeping” April holiday so took the chance.

See the photo from one of the waiting lines…can you pick out the Giants hat from the swarms?!
This was our first of many lines. An hour long line to get on a 20 minute bus ride, then a 30 minute line to buy tickets, then an almost 3 hour line to get on the cable car to head to the top.

Our plan was to hike to the summit, but by the time we actually arrived, it was a better idea to make friends on our way up by cable car. I practiced Chinese with a young student, we met a Dutch family, and in our cable car were two Purdue graduates. The couple had lived in Indianapolis for years, the wife had just been to Monterey for a conference last month, and there was another Chinese guy who lived around the corner from us in Ningbo; who knew!

The day was gorgeous and when the reached the summit it was still gorgeous and clear…damn….no mist. Oh well, we tried our best to envision the clouds and find serenity as we jostled for a spot to get a good shot. There is the famous “welcoming tree” like the Pebble Beach Cypress, the padlocks of love that couples leave on the mountain and toss the key over the side, and the jutting peaks inspiring different shapes.

We were able to find some moments of peace as we descended, straight down for about 2 hours, and the air felt fabulous!

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