Mount Huashan – North and South Peaks
“To live is to be willing to die over and over again.” Pema Chödrön
Why This Peak?
Mount Huashan has the plank walk which makes it by many accounts the most dangerous hike in the world. This is the reason we came to China. Mount Huashan is also one of the five sacred mountains in China. It’s also an experience of a lifetime to see the Chinese culture, especially the Great Wall of China and the Terra Cotta Warriors.
Peak & Route Facts
Mount Huashan has four peaks: North, South, East, and West. The South summit is the highest at 7,087′. The hike is most well known for it’s plank walk which is a detour off the main trail. It also has a number of very steep and narrow sections which names such as Thousand-Foot Precipice, Hundred-Foot Crevice, and Black Dragon Ridge. It is possible to hike to all four summits in one long day.
Historical and Cultural Information
China’s history is vast and rich as it’s one of the oldest histories in the world that could take a lifetime to study.
China, officially the People’s Republic of China (PRC), is a unitary sovereign state in East Asia. With a population of over 1.381 billion, it is the world’s most populous country. The state is governed by the Communist Party of China, and its capital is Beijing. China is a great power and a major regional power within Asia, and has been characterized as a potential superpower. Covering approximately 9.6 million square kilometres (3.7 million square miles), China is the world’s second largest state by land area,
China’s landscape is vast and diverse, ranging from forest steppes and the Gobi and Taklamakan Deserts in the arid north to subtropical forests in the wetter south. The Himalaya, Karakoram, Pamir and Tian Shan mountain ranges separate China from much of South and Central Asia. The Yangtze and Yellow Rivers, the third and sixth longest in the world, respectively, run from the Tibetan Plateau to the densely populated eastern seaboard. China’s coastline along the Pacific Ocean is 14,500 kilometers (9,000 mi) long, and is bounded by the Bohai, Yellow, East China, and South China seas.
China emerged as one of the world’s earliest civilizations in the fertile basin of the Yellow River in the North China Plain. For millennia, China’s political system was based on hereditary monarchies known as dynasties, beginning with the Xia dynasty (c. 2070 bce). Since 221 bce, when the Qin dynasty conquered the other largest six states to form the first unified Chinese empire, China has then expanded, fractured and re-unified numerous times in the following millennia. In 1912, The Republic of China (ROC) replaced the last dynasty, and ruled the Chinese mainland until 1949, when it was defeated by the communist People’s Liberation Army in the Chinese Civil War. The Communist Party established the People’s Republic of China in Beijing on 1 October 1949, while the ROC government relocated to Taiwan with its present de facto temporary capital in Taipei. Both the ROC and PRC continue to claim to be the legitimate government of all China, though the latter has more recognition in the world and controls more territory.
Since the introduction of economic reforms in 1978, China has become one of the world’s fastest-growing major economies. As of 2016, it is the world’s second-largest economy by nominal GDP and largest by purchasing power parity (PPP). China is also the world’s largest exporter and second-largest importer of goods. China is a recognized nuclear weapons state and has the world’s largest standing army and second-largest defense budget.