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Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

In Brief: Photos from a short hike along a rough but pretty line of Great Wall in Beijing’s northwest.

Our Middle Switchback Great Wall hike follows a section of rough but pretty Great Wall in the hills west of Badaling. It’s quite a contrast to the touristed section of Great Wall at Badaling - here it’s all unrestored, and seldom-visited!

We hike up a forested valley to find the Great Wall and then follow it up and down steep ridgelines, with great views the whole way.

The first part of the hike took us up a valley trail, with no views of the Great Wall just yet - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

The first part of the hike took us up a valley trail, with no views of the Great Wall just yet.

A tower comes into view in a gap in the hills. This is the General’s Tower, and you'll see more photos of it later - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

A tower comes into view in a gap in the hills. This is the General’s Tower, and you'll see more photos of it later.

Lots of greenery during the summer can make it hard to see the wall initially - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Lots of greenery during the summer can make it hard to see the wall initially.

Follow our lead and our ribbons! - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Follow our lead and our ribbons!

On the wall at last, time for a break - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

On the wall at last, time for a break.

Ready to set off on the next uphill part of the walk - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Ready to set off on the next uphill part of the walk.

Up we go - a little challenging, with loose footing in many places - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Up we go - a little challenging, with loose footing in many places.

Coming through a tower - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Coming through a tower.

Up on top of the same tower - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Up on top of the same tower.

Up ahead, the trail along the wall gets steeper - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Up ahead, the trail along the wall gets steeper.

Stunning views in clear weather - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

Stunning views in clear weather.

A steep climb took us up to a high point - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

A steep climb took us up to a high point.

In the General’s tower, the highest point on this hike - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

In the General’s tower, the highest point on this hike.

We continued a few more towers down, and finished the hike in a small village - Middle Switchback Great Wall, 2015/06/07

We continued a few more towers down, and finished the hike in a small village.

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