When the summer of 2020 is starting to flow over into fall, we will ascent the Tibetan plateau to do one of our most exciting trips yet. We will blend our intimate knowledge of the Great Outdoors around the Genie Mountain in Litang with a masterclass in the unique Tibetan yoga exercises known as Lu Jong. This tour will be a traverse from the northwest of Yunnan all the way up to the 4000+ meters plateau deep in the Tibetan parts of Sichuan. Our aim is to get as intimate as we can with the Tibetan ways of life and do that through the careful practice of Lu Jong and the appreciation of the formidably pristine nature around us.
DAY 1 – 5 September 2020 – Arrival in Kunming “Welcome South of the Clouds”
Arrival in Kunming. Transfer to a comfortable hotel. Welcome dinner.
We have ranked this expedition in the “INTERMEDIATE-DIFFICULT” category. This means accessibility is relatively low, altitude is moderate to high (2500 – 4500 meters) and there are no real technical trails or exposed terrain. All of the expeditions in this category are suitable for outdoor lovers with hiking experience, if they have a strong physique, have some altitude experience and do not suffer from obesity or high blood pressure. We will provide very detailed information about all the distances and how to deal with the thin air. We travel with a small group, so we can still give a very customized service. We will use an expedition-style approach so that we can practice Lu Jong yoga at the campsites. We are able to organize shorter more challenging excursions from the campsites for the more experienced members of the group.
We will stay in 3 and 4-star hotels.
The 4 Nights on the mountain we’ll stay in a top of the line camp with large dining room tent, double-walled expedition tents to sleep with comfortable high-tech mattresses and bedding.
One night we’ll stay over at our Tibetan friends in their village.
We’ll be traveling with an 18-seat officially registered tourist van, operated by one of the best drivers in Yunnan, Dali local Yin Guangtao.
Our tour will start in Southwest China’s one and only metropole; Chengdu. The earlier you arrive in Chengdu the better, it’s a good place to adjust to the time difference. The city breathes a really amazing atmosphere and offers the most amazing street snacks and treats. Indulge in the local tea house culture to blow off some summer steam. The air around us will drastically change when we plane on to the Lijiang, a small touristic city up 0n 2500 meters, right in Yunnan province’s beating historical heart. Obviously, we’ll guide you away from the masses, and seek out interesting temples and viewpoints, get some exercise and sunshine on our faces, and get our energy flowing with Lu Jong classes in stunning natural settings.
After an interesting little road trip, we’ll be ascending the Tibetan plateau for further adjustment to a higher altitude. We’ll stay in a beautiful boutique hotel, where we can practice Lu Jong on the roof terrace, overlooking the old town. We’ll be having lots of hearty Tibetan food at the stove, getting to know our friendly hosts. We’ll make some nice hikes in the countryside around the town, and learn about the intriguing trading route history.
On this longer and much windier road trip, we’ll start to really notice that we’re in Tibet. We’ll be crossing through villages and towns on the 4000+ meter Tibetan plateau and visit places of natural and spiritual significance. We’ll meet some local lamas who will show us their monasteries. There will be ample opportunity to practice Lu Jong on the high passes and in the fields adjacent to the monasteries.
We will arrive in the bustling Khampa capital in the middle of summer. At this time of year, the weather is most permitting, and that makes it a good opportunity for us to not only explore Litang’s history but also make some local friends in the streets. We’ll have some great Tibetan food and make sure that we are adjusted to the altitude. We’ll organize Lu Jong sessions every day, mostly using green grassy patches with fabulous views over the town and the approaching skies.
If you are looking for wild, untamed nature, the 6204 meter-high Genie Mountain harbors some of the most pristine scenery in Sichuan; flowery fresh green fields stretching long and wide, impressive high altitude forests, crystal-clear alpine lakes and holy snow peaks towering out above all of it. During this time of year, the herding life is in full swing. This means our first stop is at a nomad family’s traditional black tent, where we will get to know everything we want to know about pasture life.
We’ll be camping for 4 nights at 2 different campsites. The first campsite will be in the fields among the herders. We’ll walk up the valley to find natural hot springs to bathe. Our walks are all very manageable and there will be a lot of time to practice Lu Jong exercises. The second campsite will be next to the oldest and most stunning Buddhist temple in the area. Again, we’ll stay here 2 nights and organize an excursion to look for a mystical “Maitreya rock” further up the valley. We’ll practice Lu Jong in the fields and the forests. Or last night in the Genie mountain area, we’ll stay over at the house of a Tibetan family.
When we get back to Litang, we’ll have our last yak butter tea and move on to the airport for our homeward journey. We’ll be passing through Chengdu and spend 2 nights here in the steamy hot Sichuanese capital, indulging in city life with some illuminating urban exploring after our deep dive in Tibetan nature.