Mao Zedong once said that “He who doesn’t reach the Great Wall is not a great man.” Big words indeed, and though I didn’t agree with his sentiment, I thought, you know, since I was in the area, I should at least swing by and see what all the fuss was about. Now, after visiting one of the only man-made structures visible from space, I can say that Mao may have had a point.
Stretching a mind-boggling 4,000 miles, the Great Wall was used to defend various empires from attacking tribes, mostly from Manchurians and Mongolians. Dynasties have risen and fallen, land has changed hands, but throughout it all, the Wall remains, an impressive testament to the perseverance of the Chinese people and culture.
The weather on the day I visited was numbingly cold and windy and there were patches of packed snow on the steep steps. This of course did not make for optimal wall-climbing conditions. At first the dizzying grade made me question weather I could make it up at all, but then I saw few old ladies in high heels a few meters ahead and knew that I was just being a huge baby. Eventually I acclimated to the steepness of the stairs and was soon flying up from one watchtower to the next, taking in all the amazing views along the way. Visiting the Great Wall may not make you great man, but at the very least it makes for some great pictures. Here are few of my favorites:
The view looking back.
A lone watchtower
A window in a watchtower
I don’t know who Brayden is, but apparently he’s a hot piece of ass. Yay Vandalism?
Just keep climbing.