Monday, May 13, 2013

To the Top of the World and Back

Me at the beginning of our climb! We hiked all the way to the lookout point
at the top of the picture. (Look for the black arrow.) Talk about a hike!

By Amanda Lensch
UNL Graduate Student

I took this picture from the top of a particularly steep set of
steps after Cindy and Dr. Crews had climbed down. Yikes!
On this trip there was one ‘tourist site’ that I had to see. Of course it was the Great Wall of China. (I mean how can you go to China without seeing the Great Wall?)

On Saturday, we were part of a tour that took us two hours by bus outside of Beijing to the Mutianyu section of the wall. All I can say is it was great. Great in size-certainly. Great in beauty – absolutely.

Great in tiring us out – like you wouldn’t believe!

The building of the Great Wall began in the 7th century B.C. when China was comprised of many small kingdoms, and was used as a defense mechanism against warring neighbors. The Mutianyu section of the wall was built about 600 years ago during the Ming Dynasty. At one point, portions of the wall were even used as a means to protect the Silk Road, which was vital to China’s production of silk and their ability to trade globally. To read more about the history of the Great Wall, go here.

Your lovely IQSCM China team (minus Marin)
at the end of our climb!
Upon arriving we took a not so glorified ski lift up to the wall. Our guide recommended that we explore the wall to the right of the lift, as it was typically less crowded, albeit a more challenging hike. So of course, this is what Cindy, Dr. Crews and I decided to do.

The guide wasn’t kidding about it being more challenging. I have the sore muscles to prove it.

I’ve included some pictures of the climb we made to share our great accomplishment with you!

It was a heart racing, muscles burning kind of climb – up and down big steps, little steps, through lookouts, and more. But we did it, and it was so worth it! You feel on top of the world as you take in the breathtaking scenery all around you.

So amazing!

We spent several hours on the wall, before taking, of all things, a toboggan down the mountain! Yes, all three of us took a toboggan down – and we have proof! Topping it all off was a tasty traditional Chinese lunch at the base of the mountain with our tour group.

Simply spectacular.

Successful ride down the mountain! Love having
the opportunity to embrace the inner child!

Amanda Lensch is working on a master’s in textile history with an emphasis in quilt studies at UNL. She has a bachelor’s degree in apparel merchandising, design and production with an emphasis in museum studies and a minor in entrepreneurial studies from Iowa State University. She is a graduate assistant working in collections at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum and previously interned at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Ky., and Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.

1 comment:

  1. It looks like you had a beautiful, clear, warm day for the Great Wall! Lucky you! Continue having a great time.