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1.5 day photographic hike?

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  • 1.5 day photographic hike?

    Hi,, newbie checking in, with a long post, so apologies in advance!

    Basically I'm really hoping I can get some clarity or ideas on the following

    i plan to do a hike/ photo tour of the wall on october 17th , overnight to the 18th, then back to Beijing by 12pm to ensure plenty of time to collect luggage and get on a bullet train booked for 3pm later that day.
    I have written to several tour companies but no response and now I have found you guys:-)

    so, given the above, I like the sound of a Hike from Jiankou to Mutianyu ( or perhaps reverse and start early to miss the afternoon crowds at Mutianyu)
    It seems if I left at say 6am , with a driver, I would be at the wall by 8.30, and finished the hike by say 1pm.

    i figured on getting picked up , and taken to another location were I can take lunch then perhaps have a smaller 1 or 2 hour hike late evening to catch the sun set, stay overnight at this final sunset destination( off the wall preferably as romantic as it sounds, it will do my back in sleeping on the stones I'm sure!) then get up early to catch the sun rise, another 2 hour hike and get a car back to Beijing .

    please help, as I just can't seem to see how/ where I should do this.

    other questions as I'm on a roll.

    For photographic reasons , better to walk east to west in the moriniga and west to east in the evenings for photos and not having the sun in your eyes?

    Jinshanling, is this now open or still closed, I can't seem to get clarification.

    Are the trails to get to the wall at jiankou clear, or is it impossible without a guide ?

    Gubei water town, how busy is it on the wall at sunset/ sunrise and if it doesn't open until 7.30am how do you get to see the sun rise?

    any places to recomend staying that are really close to the wall to allow a sun rise picture?

    any clarity on these matters would be really appreciated, sorry for so many questions, but it's really hard to piece together!

  • #2
    Just spend all your time at Jiankou. It's spectacular, there's accommodation, and you won't waste time on the road. Gubei water town is a recent tourist construction. Jiankou is the real thing.
    If you're tired of the Great Wall, you're tired of life.
    Journeys, &c