02. Trekking from Lugu Lake to Yading Nature Reserve
Lijiang Old Town - Lugu lake - Yak Farm-unknown Grassland - Tongtian River - Kawa Village - Lusi Grassland - Kasi Village - Kasi Gorge - Kasi Yak Farm - Chonggu Monastery – Daocheng – Litang – Kangding - Chengdu
Day1 Lijiang Old Town(2,616m)
Pick you up from the airport and transfer to the hotel in the old town. The rest of the day is free for you to explore the old town and buy something necessary for the trip. In the evening, our tour leader will meet you all in the hotel to give you the breifing of itinerary. Stay in garden style hotel in the old town(3 star or better)
Day2 Lijiang Old Town/Lugu lake(216km/7hs drive 2,640m)
Early in the morning we will take a van directly to Lugu lake( the undisputed home of the Mosuo minority, famous for its matriarchal structure and ‘walking marriages’, but has also been the home of Naxi, Yi, Pumi and Tibetan peoples over the centuries), passing Naxi and Yi houses on the way, as well as beautiful scenes of cascading rice terraces. Before reaching our destination, Lugu Lake, we will have a stop for lunch in Ninglang County, where 90 percent persons are Yi People. Stay in a cosy hostel near Lugu Lake.
Day3 Lugu Lake/ Yak Farm(45km/1.5hs drive) / unknown Grassland(17km/7hs trekking 2,900m)
Early in the morning we will drive directly to Yak Farm, our trekking start point and meet our horse-men team, have our luggage packed on the horses . It takes us 4 hours or so to walk up to the Yeji Mountain Pass(3,600m), passing by the Yi People village on the way. The colorful prayer cloth on the trees reminds us of arriving at the mountain pass, from there we may have a nice view of the Lion Mountain near Lugu Lake. And we will trek down among the virgin forests for 3 hours directly to our camping site, an unknown grassland near the river.
Day4 Unknown Grassland/Tongtian River(22km/6-7hs trekking, 2,700m)
Today’s walking is easy for us, though it is long, for the reason of no strong rise and fall on the way. After breakfast we go outside the forest, walking along the tractor road, where a river accompanies us all the way. Before arriving our camping site, we will pass by some Tibetan villages, Yiji and Jiaqu villages. From Jiaqu village we will trek down to Tongtian river, where we will camp nearby.
Day5 Tongtian River/Kawa Village(16km/6-7hs trekking 3,000m)
In the morninf we will trek up along the half-way up mountain trail until arriving at the top, where we can see Tongtian River meeting Dongyi River. When trekking up, we will have a fantastic view on the way, what impress us are the high mountains, huge valleys, and villages scatter in the opposite deep mountains. Before arriving at our camping site near Kawa Village, where Mongolians live, we will pass by Hadi Naxi People village(3,300m). This section of trail makes us walk on the top of high mountains, as if walking in the clouds.
Day6 KawaVillage/Lusi Grassland(15km/6-7hs trekking 3,200m)
From Kawa village down to Keku Village(2,700m) on the way, we may see many huge cactus growing on the cliffs, and what surprises us most is a house build on the cliff close to Dongyi River. Keku Village is a place where Tibetan people live, from there we will trek up again until arriving at our camping site, leaving the river far behind.
Day7 Lusi grassland /Kasi Village(17km/6-7hs trekking,2,600m)
Today is a long journey for us. Early in the morning, we will leave our camping site, trekking down outside the forest until arriving at the Seku village(2,600m). From there we will go across the river by the bridge, and walk further to Wangzi village, where we stop our trekking today, and change the van to Kasi village.
Day8 Kasi Village/Kasi Gorge/Kasi Yak Farm(16km/6-7hs trekking 4,000m)
From today we will start the hardest trekking section, for the average height of the altitude is above 3,800m .Kasi village is the entrance to Kasi Gorge, and in the morning we will enter the Gorge, walking in the virgin forests. Two hours trekking along the bottom of the gorge later, we will trek up until reaching Kasi Yak Farm, where we will camp tonight. And from here the altitude is above 4,000m.
Day9 Kasi Yak Farm/Chonggu Monastery(16km/7-8hs trekking 3,800m)
Today’s trekking is the most strenuous . Before trekking down again we have to reach the highest mountain pass(4,800m) of these days, from where we have a nice view of the two snow mountains( Chenrezi (6032) and Chenadorje (5958), plateau lake(the Milk Lake(4,750m). Have a short rest near the plateau lake below the mountain and then we continue trekking down into the virgin forests where we can find the height of the altitude descending sharply. Before getting to the guesthouse near Chonggu Monastery, we firstly will pass by Luorong Yak Farm (4,200m), located among the center of the three snow mountains, Chenrezi (6032m), Jampayang (5958m) and Chenadorje (5958m).
Day10 Chonggu Monastery/Daocheng(110km/3hs by bus 3,700m)
Today we needn’t get up very early, in the morning enjoy the leisure time on the grassland near the monastery, after lunch we will trek down about one hour outside the scenic spot, where we say good-by to our horse-men team, and take the bus waiting to Daocheng. Stay in the local guesthouse.
Day11 Daocheng/Litang(150km/3h drive altitude 4014m)
In the morning free time for you to explore the small Tibetan city , for Daocheng provides a few creature comforts, a good place to relax and adjust your head to the upcoming change in style and pace. After lunch we will drive to Litang, one of the highest towns in the world (Lhasa is 3700m).
Stay in 3-star hotel
Day12 Litang/Kangding(290km/8hs drive 2,600m)
Today we will drive towards the east direction, covering part of the Sichuan to Tibet Highway before arriving in Chengdu. On the way we will pass by 4 high mountain passes, the average height of them are above 4,500m, and into the mountains and steep valleys of Kangding. Kangding is the traditional trading and meeting point between the Tibetan plateau to the west and the Han river plains in the east, and the buildings, wares and mix of people reflect this. say goodbye to the highlands.
Stay in 3-star hotel
Day13 Kangding/Chengdu(3,60km/6-7hs drive, 5,00m)
Hit the road for an early start to our last day's drive, which follows what was the old tea route between China and Tibet and is now the main military road into the TAR. Stop for lunch at Luding, site of one of the more heroic episodes of the Long March, we then proceed to cross the 3000m Erlang pass and the 10-km Erlang tunnel, skirting north of the 7756m Minyak Gangkar (Gonggashan) to the south which given clear weather we should get views of, before hitting fertile plains (the breadbasket of China) and major highways and so into the fires of Chengdu. The end of tour.
Stay in 4-star hotel
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