The nightmarish section didn't last too long though and we were so relieved when we started to work our way down with a few buildings in sight
. We bought bus tickets back to Lijiang before beginning the decent down to Tiger leaping Rock. We chose the path that had been recommended to us as we weren't exactly spoilt for choice. We paid £2 to the family that 'built' it and headed down. At first it wasn't too bad, it wasn't exactly kind to our knees but it was still a dirt path and some steps. It then gradually went down hill from there, in both senses of the word. There weren't any steps any more just a dug out sandy crevice in the cliff with thick wire held up on the side to cling onto for your only support, (on which Chris cut his hand). It got worse and worse, it was knackering going down it so we were already dreading the return back up. There were occasions when there was no track at all, just some old rusty ladder to climb down. The walk was neither child or Edana friendly. When we reached the bottom we had a quick breather on a boulder and then decided to just get it over and done with. We both agreed that neither of us had ever found something as physically difficult as the trek back up. I even had a couple of Chinese men who wanted there photo taken with me, the dirty, sweaty western girl. We were so proud of ourselves for just making it back up, let alone we realised, doing it in almost half the time it said it took (possibly why we were so tired)... We had a couple of hours before the bus back so we fitted in a few celebratory beers to conclude our couple of days in the gorge.
We woke up at Halfway Inn to see the sun shining onto the cliffside opposite us and after a quick breakfast we set off again towards Tina's GH. It was a cloudless blue sky but with every upside must come a downside. It wasn't long until we found ourselves on what was no longer a path but rocks clinging onto to the side of the cliff over which we had to clamber over with what seemed like a vertical drop down on our right. This was exactly the type of thing we had feared for this walk, all we could think about was one wrong footing and that would be it. Chris' vertigo was enough of a problem for him as it was but the strong gusts of wind weren't helping either of us. There aren't too many photos from this section as for peace of mind, we preferred to have both of our hands free. I chose the strategy "ignore the fierce wind, don't look down and keep walking" as it wouldn't have taken much more for me to curl up into a ball and start rocking backwards and forwards.