By the time you’re reading this – A.I.P will have completed one of the major elements of our Trip – Climbing Mt Huashan!!
Now note – this post is done pre-emptively (cos we’re firewalled inside China), so these photos aren’t ours, but you can bet that we will come back with some EPIC pics of this place – personally, I’m intending to handstand that plank walk 😉
Situated in Huayin City, Mt. Huashan is 120 kilometers (about 75 miles) from Xian. It is famous for natural vista of steep and narrow paths, precipitous crags and a high mountain range. Its five peaks are the representative attractions and each has its distinctive charms: East Peak is the best place to enjoy the sunrise; South Peak has the highest altitude; West Peak is the most elegant; North Peak is famous as the Cloud Terrace Peak and Middle Peak is also called Jade Lady Peak.
The Mountain is also home to several influential Taoist temples, where many emperors of past dynasties took part in Taoist activities and sacrificed to the god of mountain, making it a holy land of Taoism. At its foot, are the representatives of its Taoist elements:
From approximately the 2nd century BCE, there was a Daoist temple known as the Shrine of the Western Peak located at its base. Daoists believed that in the mountain lives the god of the underworld. The temple at the foot of the mountain was often used for spirit mediums to contact the god and his underlings. Unlike Taishan, which became a popular place of pilgrimage, Huashan, because of the inaccessibility of its summits, only received Imperial and local pilgrims, and was not well visited by pilgrims from the rest of China. Huashan was also an important place for immortality seekers, as many herbal Chinese medicines are grown and powerful drugs were reputed to be found there. Kou Qianzhi the founder of the Northern Celestial Masters received revelations there. In the 1230s, all the temples on the mountain came under control of the Daoist Quanzhen School. In 1998, the management committee of Huashan agreed to turn over most of the mountain’s temples to the China Daoist Association. This was done to help protect the environment, as the presence of taoists and nuns deters poachers and loggers.
What’s There and How Do You Climb?
We’ve found this great map that shows all the fantastic things you can see, and the different ways you can up and down this amazing place.
Can guarantee that we’re having a ball up here – and we can’t wait to come back and share some photos and pics of this incredible place.
Pete and Jodes.