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Hiking photos - Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, 2011/04/23

Huangcaoliang, or Yellow Grass Ridge, is a point along our longest route. Its gorgeous views of the mountains in Mentougou have made it a popular attraction. Unfortunately, unenlightened visitors to Huangcaoliang leave much of their garbage there after they leave. In order to celebrate Earth Day, we went out to pitch in by picking up and packing out some of the litter we found.

Huangcaoliang makes up part of a beautiful plateau in the Yan Mountain Range, which forms a semicircle around Beijing from southwest to northeast. Being so far west of the city and situated at over 1,600 meters above sea level, there is a major difference between the climate there and in the main urban area.

After driving out through the tourist village of Cuandixia and an interesting gulch, we started our hike along a road at the foot of the plateau we’d eventually climb. The road terminated, and we started walking up a trail that led gently upwards through some orchards. Eventually, we began ascending in earnest as our route took us along a cliff face and up a beautiful gully before reaching our destination.

The weather was somewhat cloudy at the start of our hike, with a cold drizzle. As we went higher, it got colder. The cold drizzle turned to freezing rain, and then to snow. By the time we reached the highest point for the day, we were in a blizzard! We picked up whatever trash we could spot, and when we decided to head down again. As we descended, the skies cleared, the temperatures rose rapidly, and the snow melted as quickly as it had fallen!

Thanks to the hikers who supplied these photos!

, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

The forest looks magical covered in a fresh later of dazzling snow.

The valley’s high cliff walls, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

We could see the valley’s high cliff walls and peaks above the snowy forest.

A small stream, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

The narrow trail that leads up to the Yellow Grass Ridge.

Part of the path, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

Part of the path through the forest. Everyone has to walk carefully on the wet, slippery stones.

Some of the trash, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

Some of the trash left behind by thoughtless hikers, which we came to clean up as part of our way to celebrate Earth Day.

Our crew, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

Our crew filled quite a few large trash bags with garbage, which we carried out of the hills.

Placing trash in the garbage bags, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

About 15 minutes after it stopped snowing the sun came out, and melted all of the snow away.

Hiking along a broad path , Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

Hiking along a broad path high up on a hillside in the valley.

 Some of the things that people chose to throw out here!, Beijing Hikers Clean-up Hike at Huangcaoliang, April 23, 2011

We found some really unusual things to carry down from the top.

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