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Asia, China, Yunnan Province, Various Ascents

Yunnan Province, Various Ascents. In April, I traveled to northwest Yunnan province and made my way to the town of Dechin by public bus. From April 25-27, I recced the approach to Baima Shan, an unclimbed peak of around 5500 meters on the west side of the road between Zhongdian and Dechin. On the 28th, I climbed a small unnamed and unmarked 5300-meter peak on the east side of the road. I began climbing from my camp at around 4000 meters and reached the summit after three-and-a-half hours via the west ridge. Temperatures were -15°C on the summit at sunrise. I had great views over Sichuan and toward Tibet. The climbing was characterized by moderate snow and ice slopes plus two large gendarmes of rotten and loose rock that I was forced to climb over. I climbed by headlamp as there was no moon. The weather during my stay tended to be clear in the morning, hot in the afternoon, then stormy at night. Snow cover at this time of year was considerable, blocking the road from Zhongdian until mid-April, though I saw no signs of avalanches.

I returned to Lijiang, again by public bus. Then, on May 3-4,1 approached Yulongxueshan, also known as Jade Dragon Snow Mountain (5590m), reaching 4200 meters on the south side. Bad weather and lack of food led me to descend and return to Lijiang.

Damien Gildea, Australia