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TIGER LEAPING GORGE HIKE

Located 60 km north of Lijiang, Tiger Leaping Gorge is a canyon on the Yangtze River. Around 15 km in length, the gorge passes between Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (Yωlσngxuĕ Shān) (5,596 m) and Haba Xueshan (Hābā Shān) (5,396 m) through a series of rapids surrounded by steep 2000 metre cliffs.

Legend says that in order to escape from a hunter, a tiger jumped across the river at it's narrowest point (25 metres), subsequently providing the inspiration for the name.

The Gorge is a contender for the world's deepest river canyon - depending on the criteria applied.

The inhabitants of the gorge are primarily the indigenous Naxi people, who live in a handful of small hamlets. Their primary subsistence comes from grain production and foreign hikers. The gorge is not considered navigable.

Hiking the length of the gorge is possible. A challenge for most, but well worth it. While sometimes narrow, the hiking path - the high road - is well-maintained and marked. At approximately 22 kilometres (14 mi) in length, the trail is longer than the lower road, but is more varied, and offers fantastic scenery — mainly mountain views. It features a surprising variety of microecosystems, waterfalls and a fair number of guesthouses for trekkers.

The guesthouses are not well heated, which combined with the unpredictable nature of high mountain weather, make this trek unadvisable during the rainy season.

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Additional Photos by Kevin KL (kk_wpg) Silver Note Writer [C: 0 W: 0 N: 88] (361)
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