Four Sisters Mountain travel photography – China

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The Four sisters mountains is noted as a UNESCO Heritage Site. It is the second highest peak of Sishuan at 6250m above sea level. Covering over 450sq kilometers, the park spreads accross 3 valleys: the Hazi valley, the Shuangqiao Valley and the Changping Valley. Unless you have the time to hike all 3 valleys, Hazi Gou is the best option as it features stunning landscapes and it is easily accessible from Rilong. Rilong is a small city located at 3160m above sea level which is used as a basecamp for the he Four sisters mountains. Be aware that any multiple-day hike implies hiring a mandatory guide on top of the already utterly expensive entrance fees. If you are heading from Tagong, it is a long commuting journey of 7 to 8 hours. You have to get a bus or a minivan from Tagong to Bamei, then from Bamei to danba, then from danba to xiaojin and finaly from xiaojin to rilong.

The Haizi Gou Valley is a 38kms return hike which I believe is doable in a day. At least, this is what I was aiming for. Unfortunately, it was pouring rain the whole previous day meaning that the path was extremely muddy. If this was not enough, there is a strong horse riding business going on. Horses are turning the soil into quicksand and you are literally walking all the way in horse poop and horse pie. How lovely?

If you do not have a strong physical condition or if the weather make it tough to go through the whole 38kms, you can walk up to the first Lake which is a 28kms return hike with a positive 664m up to the Da Hai Zi Lake. The highest point of the hike stands at 3824m. The second lake also known as the Hua Hai Zi Lake is an additional 3kms.

The four sisters mountain is also the last place I visit in China before flying over South Korea.

I had the opportunity to travel to China back 4 years ago. My opinion about China remains the same! China is an amazing country to travel to. It features a huge diversity of landscapes, people and food specials. More than half of China’s minority groups live in both the provinces of Yunnan and Sishuan. The province of Yunnan is often described as the most beautiful province of China. I do not agree much. Sishuan is the real deal. Over 80% of Western Sishuan’s people are Tibetan. Any destination is quite off the beaten track. Despite the strong language barrier, Tibetans are just incredibly nice and joyful people. The food specials are great and the landscapes are something you can not see anywhere else. There is a strong adventurous feeling when exploring Sishuan. This has been pure enjoyment! If I had to do it again or advise someone planning on traveling China, I would highly recommend spending a WHOLE month in western Sishuan between late autumn and early spring! I believe that snow gives even more charm to these Tibetan landscapes!

 

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