It was raining once again that morning, which meant that it had rained for three days in a row. We had already made plans to head to 'Chicken Cave' the next time it rained, as the guidebook had stated that that crag was one of the best places to climb in wet weather. The others were not so keen on cycling the same way all over again though, so Lily said that she will call a taxi (CNY40/5
) for us whilst we went out to get some glutinous rice and sausage (Mandarin: 香肠, CNY7
) for lunch later on.
The chicken cave crag is located behind a farmhouse by the side of the road. Because of this, the crag is a little tricky to get to if you have never been before. Take the first left just after crossing the bridge that spans the Yulong River, across from the Big Banyan Tree park. The road heads south-east at first but then swings eastward past a residential area. The farmhouse is just over a kilometre from the bridge, after turning right down a smaller road. Sticking to the road that continues eastward will eventually bring you to the climbing crags of 'Space Buttress' and 'Low Mountain'.
As soon as we reached the farmhouse
, we were greeted by a lady that held up a sign that stated that each person had to pay CNY10
to enter. She justified it by saying that the fee was compensation for the destruction of her crops, despite the presence of a dirt track leading straight to the crag. Both the locals in Yangshuo and the climbing guidebook had clearly stated that we should not pay this lady in order to not encourage that sort of behaviour, so our protests led to an argument with her. The lady started to become increasingly aggressive as she realised how unwavering we were in our decision to not pay, and ended up getting quite physical and even shoving her umbrella in our faces. It had started to rain again by then and the taxi had already left, so the rest gave in and decided to just pay the fee. The lady ended up 'stealing' CNY25
from the 5 of us, instead of the CNY50 that she originally asked for, and said that the only reason was because Ian was "young and Chinese".We continued down the dirt path undeterred, but somehow missed the small path on the left that would have taken us straight to the cave. We ended up at a pond, and tried to clamber haphazardly around it in the mud, attempting to make our way to the north-west-facing cave as best we could. We eventually realised that this could not possibly be the way, and backtracked a little to see if we had missed anything. We found the right path easily soon after, yet none of us could recall seeing the path on the way up. We must have assumed that the path would have been located much further past the farm, considering how the lady had demanded the money, and did not think that it could have been just a few minutes from the road. By then, we had wasted a good hour or so, and had yet to see a single chicken!Alex on 'Tufa Rufa' (6a+). Just one bolt from the anchor!
was a fairly large cave that was filled with sand and bare earth. There were a bunch of very easy routes from 4-6a
, as well as some very difficult routes that were around 7b to 8a
that curved around to the ceiling of the cave. My medial epicondylitis had flared up so I ended up just taking back-lit shots of the others as they climbed.A glorious backdrop!