It was freezing cold when we got up in the morning after we left the comfort of the electric blanket in bed. So we put on our cold wear and went to the lobby café for breakfast. We pick our table near the fireplace that was heating up the place nicely with kettles placed on top to keep the water hot. We ordered western meals for breakfast consisting of eggs and toasts plus French fries. Coffee was good. We were really grateful for the hot meal on a cold day.
We had already booked a visit to the Shika Snow Mountain with Bodhi Inn the day before. We would be setting off slightly after 9 am. We were told it would be best to be up on the mountain late morning where the sun would be up and it wouldn’t so cold and the wind not too strong. As such, we returned to our room after breakfast to get ready for our day trip. We notified our children about our hike and then wished them a great day ahead.
With the reconstruction work of the Old Town on going, the hotel was informed that power would be cut off during most of the day and would only be turned on again in the late afternoon. So it would be a great time to get out of Bodhi Inn to avoid the freezing cold with no power supply available other than the standby power supply from the generator to power up essential services.
We headed back to the lobby and the hotel manager, Xiao Long was already waiting. He led us out of the hotel and we walked carefully through the dug out trenches and streets outside the hotel towards the entrance of the Old Town where the van was parked. We also brought along with us the oxygen canister the hotel loaned us just in case we needed it up on the mountain above 4500 m. Of course we were well prepared with water and with adequate cold wear.
The air was cool outdoor but with the sun up in the morning, it wasn’t as cold as our room. It was a bright and sunny day which would be great for our outing up on the mountain. The hotel charged us 220 CNY per person for tickets and transport to the base of the mountain and would pick us up after our visit. The cost for this tour would be much cheaper than going up Jade Dragon Snow Mountain in Lijiang.
Xiao Long started the van and soon we were leaving Old Town and headed towards our destination. After about 45 minutes, we arrived at the base of the mountain. He told us to request the staff at the office to call the hotel to arrange a pick up and he would drive over to get us. Having given us instruction and shown us the way to the cable car station, he left us to enjoy ourselves.
Surprisingly, there were few visitors going up the mountain on the day of our visit. The building of the cable car station was practically empty with the staff sitting around having nothing to do. All those chairs there meant for waiting passengers were empty. We got through the office and went to the cable car station launch site and not long after we were ushered into a cable car. My wife and I had the whole cable car to ourselves which was fantastic.
The ride up the mountain was great with trees on both sides of the mountain. The ground below the cable car was covered with some snow. As we looked down below, the hills were still green and the open grazing area was a little brown. Animals could be seen in the open having their leisure activity eating and enjoying the warn sunshine.