We have a few trails that go from Longevity Village over to the Ming Tombs area, and on this hike we did a longer version that took us past mines and quarries into a wild valley where we walked through abandoned village.
The first part of the hike took us up a brushy trail over the hills behind Longevity Village, and then down into a valley of capped mines and a quarry. There had been a bit of quarrying since our last visit, and part of our trail had been excavated – luckily we were still able to make our way down.
We hiked out of the quarry and up and over another line of hills before heading down into a wild valley. Further down the valley we hiked past abandoned villages in the forest.
The last section of the hike took us up and over the hills behind the Ming Tombs and out past a small reservoir. During winter the reservoir had frozen, and there was still quite a lot of ice left.
See the photos below.
Good views on a clear day.
Looking down the valley towards the mines area.
This is where our trail used to be.
Lovely blue skies.
Way off in the distance we spotted the Mutianyu Great Wall, running through the hills in the center of this photo.
A wider view of the above photo.
A wasp nest.
Coming down an old track into the abandoned village.
Old walls in the forest.
Steps and a stone wall.
The feathery remains of a bird.
The flowers are almost ready to bloom.
At the top of the last hill, looking out towards the Ming Tombs.
A colourful bug.
We found ice further down the valley.
Quite a lot of ice!
We walked around on the rocks.
Sheets of ice down by the reservoir.
The ice had originally been about a metre higher, and as it had subsided it stripped the bark off the trees.
Looking down at the reservoir.
More sheets of ice.
Coming around the reservoir.
A peaceful scene.
Here we could see how high the ice had been originally, all the way to the top of the dam.
Cracks and patterns in the ice.
We hiked out past two of the Ming Tombs.
Ding Tomb was visible further off.
The walls of Yong Tomb.
The front of Yong Tomb.
We had a little picnic by the bixi outside Yong Tomb.