Day 6 of my China trek, yesterday had been tough and an emotional and memorable day but today I would face the famous Heavenly ladder after climbing 1,000 steps and crossing several watchtowers.
I had been looking forward to seeing this part of the Great Wall and climbing the steps of the Heavenly Ladder, but I knew it was listed as a tough day in our itinerary and despite walking up thousands of steps already to see that we started off climbing a thousand steps seemed somewhat daunting. We had a coach transfer to a tourist section of the wall at Mutianyu, there were lots of stalls, shops and even a Subway which is where our lunch was made to be carried in our backpacks.
Our reward at the end of the day would be a choice of how we got back down off the wall, either walk back down all those steps (no way!), cable car or toboggan and I’d already decided how I wanted to get down. It had to be by the Toboggan! I’d watched videos on YouTube and it looked awesome, and it’s not every day you can say you took a toboggan down the Great Wall!
Once up on the wall itself we walked along covering over 11 watchtowers, there were quite a few tourists and this restored section of the wall was in good condition but still got the legs and thighs working with high steps and constant ups and downs.
I reached the top of the heavenly ladder, the last flight of steps being incredibly narrow as well as steep, I’d done it! The views were amazing and we had time for group photos before making our way back down. It was certainly easier going back down the steps. At the bottom landing, we all sat around the watchtower for our slightly melted subway lunch. It was the best thing I’d tasted that day after a strange breakfast of fried rice and pickled egg and I was starving.
It might have been over in minutes but it was a fantastic experience to whizz down to the bottom on the toboggan and a well-deserved treat after climbing all those stairs. If you watch the video I am screaming and whooping like a big kid.
After regrouping we had a coach transfer to our next accommodation, with dinner and a tour of a jade factory. I was good and didn’t batter the credit card as much as I could have done!
Tomorrow would be our final mission, helping restore part of the wall at Badaling and place our special notes. Would I be able to do it without crying!
For more videos and photos of my China trek please visit my Hip2trek Facebook page.
Kind thanks to my China family for the use of some of their photos.
If you’ve trekked anywhere let me know, I’m looking for another adventure!