We had a nice—but hot—day for our hike along the quarrymen’s trail to the Ming tombs. We started out in a heavily forested valley and early in the hike passed the home of a couple in their 80’s who live in a stone hut in the woods. The path gradually made its way up to a clear high point, from where we could see the nearest peaks and the valley that we started the hike in. Along the trail, we saw butterflies, flowers in bloom, and apricots that hadn’t yet ripened.
After reaching the first high point, the trail descended into another valley, and we had lunch in the shade there along the side of a dirt road. This gave us energy to continue with the second uphill section of the hike. The high point here gave us views of the hills that lie in the direction of the Ming Tombs. From this scenic high point, we started our descent toward the area of the tombs, passing several of them. This gave us the chance to admire some of the stonemasonry of the Ming dynasty close up before finishing the hike, after which we had some snacks to refresh ourselves with before continuing to the city.