the hua mountain

Hua Shan, a mountain just outside of Xi'an in China. 

An epic trek, 7 hours of constant stairs, pulling myself up metal chains, found a bungalow filled with chinese people, paid $20 for a wooden plank to sleep on with a bag of rice as a pillow and got up at sunrise, my feet froze, my jacket was nowhere near warm enough and I waited for an hour for the sun to come, but as the sun came over the mountains it was all worth it. 

Climbing this mountain remains the coolest thing i’ve ever done in my entire life

Stamps on Chinese Art?

Oftentimes painting in China will feature an assortment of bright stamps. This includes the stamp of the original artist, but there are also stamps from owners of the painting, people who have restored it, wealthy nobles who have viewed it, and even occasionally a stamp from an art critic that approves of the piece. 

The idea of stamping art runs against Western values, and many Western art historians recoil at the idea of putting a mark on a precious painting. No one would stamp a Monet, for instance. However, in China, where history and the past is valued to a far deeper extent than in the West, these stamps add to the complex historical background of the piece. It adds to the richness of the piece to notice that a certain emperor once looked at the same image with his own eyes.

Autumn Colors on the Ch'iao and Hua Mountains, Zhao Mengfu

07.07.2014 • On the world’s most dangerous trail: plank road, Mount Hua (华山), in China. 

After finishing my exchange semester in Shanghai, a few exchange friends wanted to visit Xi'an and hike the mountain Hua. I was hesistant to join as first, because I also needed to find an internship first. 

In the end I’m so glad I did join them into this trip, because it was definitely one of the best things that I have ever done in my whole life! It was my first time hiking, and I literally died multiple times when I hiked this mountain. The sun was crazy hot and the mountain would get really steep sometimes. The prices of the drinks and snacks would also get insanely expensive the higher we got. 

After 4 tops, and 8 hours of hiking we set up our tent on top of the mountain and spent the night on there. In the early morning we woke up to watch the sunset and then we decided to walk on this crazy plank road!