Jul 19 2009

Dirty in Deqin

And so to the second Deqin Don’t. Don’t stay where I did. It was grubby, no dirty, really dirty. I have been staying all over Yunnan now for over a month and paying similar amounts to the rate at this mountain lodge. So far even if most places have been very basic, everywhere has been clean and tidy. This place seems to be stuck in the old school where the belief was that trekkers like to rough it come what may… The world has moved on and anyone will tell you, when it comes to your shower, food and bed for the night you’d prefer them all to be clean. Yuk. (A hostel I couldn’t wait to leave, Deqin 19 July)

Rough Edge Adventure Logistics. Heol Senni, Brecon, Wales.

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Jul 19 2009

Dizzy in Deqin

Deqin (pron Durr Chin) is already at an altitude of 3350m I was staying in a mountain lodge higher up the road towards the Tibetan border (see next post). And so to the first Deqin Don’t. Don’t rush in. With the idea I would climb above the hostel to take in even more breathtaking views, the views took my breath and I had to take myself down again. With the little time available to me as this trip nears its end, I believed I could do more than I could and ended up feeling decidely dodgy. My best advice for this most awe inspiring of places is to plan a few days of nothing when you first get here, then once acclimatised the terrain is yours to discover. Nonetheless, despite my haste and paying the price, I was treated to some amazing sights in the hills above Deqin, the best of which was when the mighty Mei Li Xue Shan (6740m) revealed her sacred peak through the cloud. This mountain has never been climbed (in the last attempt in 1991, 17 Japanese mountaineers lost their lives). But enough, here are the pictures and there will be more because this place has to be visited again, it is awesome. (Dizzy above Deqin 18/19 July)

Rough Edge Adventure Logistics. Heol Senni, Brecon, Wales.

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Jul 1 2009

Dali High

At 2000m Dali is already quite high. Yesterday when I arrived it was pounding with rain and there was nothing to see. In addition I foolishly left my camera on the express bus from Kunming… Thank god for Tao in Kunming and Peng here in Dali. 11 phone calls later and Peng was taking me back to Dali new town (I’m in the old town) on a bus to retrieve the camera from the lost property officer at the bus station. Between them they solved something that would have been impossible for me. Tao tells me I need to give one of the Rough Edge T shirts to the bus driver on my return to Kunming – he’s going to organise this.

Luckily this morning the rain had cleared and as I stepped out of the courtyard of Peng’s climbers’ guesthouse (bunkhouse) I saw the mountains for the first time – rising steeply above the streets of this amazing little walled city with pockets of cloud sitting in their hollows up to a dizzy 4116m. It is truly breathtaking and I can’t wait to get up there and discover more.

Now I am busy finding a partner to come with me and the first step is to move from Peng’s place to the Birds Nest – a small hostel where people can speak English and with a very wonderful relaxed Tibetan feel. I’m writing this along with a couple of earlier catch-up posts from the free internet cafe at the China Youth Hostel (I expect I’ll be back here during my time in Dali)

(Dali China Youth Hostel free internet cafe 1 July)

Rough Edge Adventure Logistics mountain navigation & training & worldwide trekking. Heol Senni, Brecon, Wales.

China 09 DofE Gold Expedition recce


Jul 1 2009

Helpful friends and a great cheap hotel

Tao in Kunming has been wonderful. Aside from running his yoga studio he found time to take me to meet Zhou Jun a climber with Red Point in Kunming. We broke through the communication barrier over half a dozen beers and some rock hard peanuts and his knowledge of the mountains of Yunnan is – and will be – extremely helpful. Thanks! The Spring Garden Star hotel in Kunming is peaceful, pleasant, clean and only ten quid a night – brilliant。(Dali China Youth Hostel free internet cafe 1 July)

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Jul 1 2009

Kunming pics

Just a few pics from Kunming – gateway to the Yunnan Province and a wonderful city. (Dali China Youth Hostel free internet cafe 1 July)

Rough Edge Adventure Logistics mountain navigation & training & worldwide trekking

China 09 DofE Gold Expedition recce


Jun 25 2009

Beijing traffic in a tin box

Not on any rough edge in particular, but nerve-fraying enough. Time was not on my side as I struggled to find a taxi that understood the way back to the Golden Pineapple Youth Hostel. The guy with the motorbike taxi promised that he knew the way. I didn’t know what would be involved. Give me a mountain anyday. (Beijing 23 June after meeting with the British Council)

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Rough Edge Adventure Logistics mountain navigation & training & worldwide trekking

China 09 DofE Gold Expedition recce