The climax of the China trip was a two day hike through Tiger Leaping Gorge, on the border between Yunnan and Tibet, in the foothills of the Himalayas. The Gorge is so named because it once narrows enough that a tiger supposedly leapt across the gorge to escape pursuit. It is a good legend, and any tiger that could have crossed that gorge merited such permanent glory, cause it is pretty wide. Never mind that it would have to be a really strong tiger; what was he running from?
Himalays disappearing into clouds
Right side of TLG trail
Shortly after we started hiking TLG, we were passed by a frail 60 year old woman. This might sounds embarassing, but she had a big advantage over my brother and me: cavalry.
The hike was spiced with locals, the Naxis, who were eager to profit from hiking tourism. All along the hike, Naxis would pass us with their horses, offering to give us a ride. They were persistent, lowering prices and yelling their offers after us as we hit steeper spots. Other Naxis sold walking sticks, lighters, wood carvings, and other greatly overpriced goodies. We also encountered other hikers. Most interestingly, absolutely no natives. Aside from Chinese people trying to sell us stuff, we encountered zero Chinese people on the whole hike.
2000 meters below our hiking trail, there was a tourist area with a lot of buses. This seems to be where the Chinese go to enjoy TLG, while the round-eyes puff and swelter through a hike.
Buses = much worse than horses!
In addition to the gorgeous mountains, there were also a lot of delightfully mysterious plants. They look normal from afar, but up close, they are obviously different.
Mostly mysterious plants on TLG
A handwritten sign (trying to sell us stuff) and the Official State Plant of California.
Here is yet another effort to service me. This was a Chinese ladybug I met on the Cangshan Trail. She didn't speak English, but I gave her 2 RMB when she started undoing my zipper, and the rest is far too vulgar to post. I simply quote Grumpier Old Men: "The devil is a beautiful woman in a red dress."
Another Chinese ladybug! This one wasn't wearing red, so I got her for only 1 RMB. Yeah. Oh, and she charged my 25000 RMB for the jissbon condom. Great name, too.
Jizz well! With jissbon! (Expert's tip: ladybugs like the lubricated ones.)
Oh also, you aren't supposed to put sunglasses on your condom before using it. The picture is really misleading, and potentially dangerous. Fortunately, the Naxis had anesthetic.
Steve, 2 Naxis, and lots of corn.
View straight ahead from the Naxi Guest House
View to the right from Naxi Guest House
View from the Naxi Guest House breakfast table