01-Jul-2012 -- Story continues from 36°N 111°E.
We set off from Xiāngníng County (乡宁县) early, foregoing the hotel’s complimentary breakfast, which doesn’t start until 7:30 am. It’s another beautiful, sunny day, air pollution notwithstanding.
We rejoin our old friend national route G209, and head south to Héjīn City (河津市). However, shortly before reaching Héjīn, the road is blocked, and we need to take a lengthy detour through some relatively mountainous terrain. We stop for breakfast in Héjīn.
Continuing southwards towards Yùnchéng Prefecture (运城市), the road gets progressively better. As we enter Yùnchéng, we pass a mechanised road sweeper, sweeping clouds of dust up into the already polluted air. Usually this job is reserved for teams of broom-wielding old men and women, their faces blackened by the dirt.
A bit further on, we stop at a branch of the Bank of China so Targ can transact some business. With that out of the way, we continue across town to the confluence, which is located on the southern outskirts.
We park 200 m short of the confluence, not wanting to risk getting stuck in the mud, and proceed the rest of the way on foot. The right side of the track is flooded with some pretty nasty coloured water. Fortunately for us, the confluence is on the relatively dry, left side of the track.
There are several spectators waiting on the track near the confluence. They have secured a prime position from which to watch the hordes of confluence visitors come and go.
The mud is dry and firm, allowing easy access to the spot for a perfect zeroes GPS reading. We take the usual north-south-east-west photos, then head back to the car.
Story continues at 36°N 112°E.