29-Jun-2011 -- This is the 6th out of 20 confluences that I reached on my bicycle trip along the Great Wall of China. The story starts at 41°N 115°E. The previous report is 41°N 111°E.
On day no.9 of my bike trip I got up at 4:30 a.m. This was a revenge for those room-mates who had partied loudly in my room last night. I left this ‘rustic’ hotel in Hālāhéshǎo (哈拉合少乡) and hit the road. Hālāhéshǎo is 80 km from the confluence point as the crows fly.
After cycling about 100 km on the road, I entered the town Gùyáng (固阳县), which is 5 km from the confluence. This little distance can be covered on the nicely asphalted Gùchá Road (固査线), but I did it the unconventional way over hill and dale. This is what happens if you simply follow the pointer of the GPS device.
The closest I could get to the point on an asphalted road is 770 m. Then, there is a track that crosses a river (Kūndōulún River, 昆都仑). This river turned out to have hardly any water, only a runlet with stinky sewage had to be crossed. On the other side of the river is a quarry (150 m from the confluence point) where several blue dump trucks where removing gravel from the river bed. I could bring my bike directly to the spot. Weather was overcast, which gave the already ugly environment an additional harm. The area is covered with some garbage and some gravel deposits. The river is about 50 m away.
After leaving the confluence point, I noticed a thorn in my front tire. Further inspection showed that there were three of those thorns in the front tire and four in the back tire. I was so blindfold to remove them – with the result that the air came out with a notable whistle. If I hadn’t removed the thorns, I could have cycled back to Gùyáng and bought new tires. Now I had the task to repair both tires right in the middle of nowhere.
The next day I cycled to the city Bāotóu (60 km) in order to meet my friends Peter Cao and Targ Parsons. We visited 8 confluences by car within 3 days. The reports start at 41°N 109°E. The next confluence on my bike trip is 38°N 109°E.
CP Visit Details:
- Distance to an asphalt road: 770 m
- Distance to a road: 770 m
- Distance to a track: 50 m
- Distance of parking the bike: 0 m
- Distance to houses: 240 m
- Time starting the hike: 14:30 p.m.
- Time at the CP: 14:30 p.m.
- Measured height: 1307 m
- Minimal distance according to GPS: 1 m
- Position accuracy at the CP: 3 m
- Topography: river bed, relatively flat area, some hills nearby
- Vegetation: short grass
- Weather: sunny, 23° C (felt temperature)
- Description of the CP: Near the town Gùyáng in the Autonomous Region Inner Mongolia.
- Given Name: The Seven Thorns Confluence
Story continues at 41°N 109°E.