At one point in our lives, we’ve all experienced that fear and doubt on our physical ability and how further we can push our mental strength to do something. Perhaps this is what happened to me in China when I climb the Great Wall. It was my first time to be in a cold country, back then it was -15 degree (Celsius). It was not the fear of traversing a path that is not normally taken by people, not the fear of the collapsing as some of the walls were already eroded, it was the fear of how my body will perform in a cold environment and its continued search for heat. I almost did not do climb, I almost quit, but I’m glad I didn’t it turned out to be one of the best travel experince I ever had in China.
So,we all know that The Great Wall of China stretches to more than a thousand miles, in fact it’s about 13,710 miles long. So where did I start my ascend on this seemingly infinite wall of history? I took the starting point called Jiankou, this is not a popular starting point as not so many tourist have been here unlike Badaling which is the most famous spot for tourist.
The starting point for hiking Jiankou is a small village called Xi zha zi 5 that is around 75-80 kilometers north of Beijing and hard to reach.
The village is small and only has a population of around 300 people who are mostly farmers. Walking through the village is a great way to see a side of China that most tourists never experience.
Once you pass through the village, there are a number of paths you can take and only one of the paths heads towards Nine Eye Tower.
Arrived in Jiankou a day before the ascend, rented out one of the rooms owned by a local, had a good dinner with them and prepare for the ascend.
It was not an easy start for me, I was still feeling cold and I know my brain is entertaining the fear that I can collapse in the middle of the climb and to no avail of medical assistance, I will be out nowhere in the middle of Great Wall. And its as if I haven’t been scared enough, my nose bleed because of too much cold. But I have made it that far, I should not go back. So I too my first step to the wall and the rest was nothing but bliss seeing the amazing scenery was just breath taking…
And the climb begins…