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Citation du moment
« Il n'y a pas de bonnes habitudes. L'habitude, c'est une façon de mourir sur place. »
Albert Quentin - Un singe en hiver

A bit of mountains

9 Feb 2014 | Dali, Yunnan, China


After a couple of days in Kunming, I feel a need of going hiking in the mountains, it's months I didn't have a nice hike, and no need to go as far as Tibet, Yunnan is a very mountaineous region at the beginning of the Himalayas.

Thumb out, I write my first chinese characters on my hitchhiking board, and off I go. First stop Dali (大理 lit. big reason) which is made of two parts: the new town at the South of lake Erhai, and the old town at the West, which has been rebuilt recently for tourism. I settle at the latter, being at the foot of the Cangshan mountains (苍山 lit. dark blue/green mountains), and being cheaper for accomodation (in China it turns out that the western-style touristy hostel are the cheapest as you would hardly find dorms in the traditionnal Chinese ones).

At the hostel I meet another jobless traveler, Sarka from Czech republic, who wants to come hiking. The more, the merrier :) we set off in the morning after touring the market for food.
With China's recent discovery of capitalism or the religion of money, witch lead to the take off of the tourism industry (also with the end of the 'cultural revolution', now people are allowed to be interested in their own -now forgotten- culture and heritage), every sight of -even little- interest has an entry fee, and even the mountains are fenced with access gates...
Going around, we finally find a way where there is a gate guarded by militaries who register people names but don't ask for money. It leads to a cemetary from where we can reach the mountain accross the forest.
It's so good to be in the mountain! We quickly make our way out of the tourist path to climb straight up and enjoy the nature. Too bad we cannot make it to the summit but it's quite high (3700m) and time and weather are against us. We make our way down with the last rays of sun while everything is closed.

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