At the beginning of the hike, we took a look at the Walled Village, originally a barracks during the Ming Dynasty. We first walked along the thick walls that surround the village, and then explored the lanes between the courtyard houses inside.
The walk to the nearby section of Great Wall was mostly flat, with only a very slight uphill gain. The trail took us through fields and chestnut orchards up to the Zhuangdaokou Great Wall, named for a nearby village.
From there, we followed the wall up and over a steep hill. From the highest tower of this section there were great views all around: distant hills and peaks, villages in countryside valleys, and more Great Wall.
We walked up a narrow road to the Walled Village.
The thick surrounding wall dates back to the Ming Dynasty; the power lines are a little more recent!
The grinding stone in the foreground doesn't look like it gets much use these days. Faded slogans painted in red can still be seen on the side of one of the houses.
We headed up and over this hill, following the wall.
The previous photo was taken higher up on this unrestored stretch of the wall.
The steep stairs here have not been restored, and are quite tricky to climb.
Reaching this tower, you might think you're about to arrive at the top—not quite!
In the background, the main section of the Huanghuacheng Great Wall.
We took a look at the Huanghuacheng Reservoir before heading back to the city.
This water freezes over in winter – quite a sight!