We started this hike with a big climb up a hillside, following the paved Vulture Rock park trail to reach the plateau at the peak. For most of the way up we followed a path of stone stairs, which passed a small shrine that showed signs of Tibetan Buddhist influence We had great weather and clear skies that day and could see mountains far in the distance.
After the big climb to the top the path flattened out, making for easy walking with scenic views of the hills in the vicinity of Miaofengshan. We stopped for lunch at the highest point, then continued over rolling hills through the forest and finally down to the village at Miaofengshan.
Our group is ready and excited about the hike!
Heading up the stairs near the start of the hike, with Beijing's suburbs behind us.
After the first 20 minutes on the stairs, we’re already well warmed up – time to take off a few layers!
Onward and upwards!
Approaching a small Buddhist shrine on the hill.
The landing just below the shrine made a good place to take a break.
A Buddhist shrine with a large incense burner in front. The Chinese characters on the outside of the temple signify the name of a bodhisattva, or enlightened being.
A view of the hills and valley from high on Miaofengshan.
Part of the trail passed through a pine forest.
Almost at the top!
The trail took us along a broad ridge.
The views from the high ridges provided us with lots of photo opportunities.
The village below is where we'd end our hike.