Sunday, April 24, 2005

The modern way to Minya Konka, Part 1: Chengdu

Chengdu, originally uploaded by jiulong.

In the 1920s Minya Konka was a little known mountain on the fringes of Sichuan province that had been seen by only a handful of westerners. To get there involved many days of mule travel from the provincial capital of Chengdu. Nowadays, thanks to the wonders of air travel and motorways you get from Chengdu to the start of the Minya Konka trek in a single day. On my most recent trip I was at work in Sydney on Friday, flew to Chengdu via Guangzhou on Saturday and arrived in Kangding on Sunday in time to arrange a taxi to the Khampa village of Lao Yulin the same afternoon. On Monday I was on horseback, heading up to the Djesi La!

This picture shows Chengdu celebrating the 50th aniversary of Communist rule in 1999. Spot the Mao statue.

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