Drive from Songtsam Meili to Songtsam Benzilan takes about two & a half hours. We drove through Baimang Snow Mountain & were admiring the scenery when it started snowing again & the sky was gloomy. One car in front of us stalled & could not move despite several pushing it. We waited about 1 hour before we could continue our journey. The sun appeared & brought lots of warmth & relief. Roads were extremely slippery but our Songtsam driver was very cautious & drove slowly. Halfway through the drive, in front of us we saw mountains dotted with autumn hues & looking back, we see the rest of the mountain blanketed in snow, what a contrast. In the late afternoon we went for a 1 hour village walk with the hotel staff. Next morning, we took a day tour from the hotel which is hiking from Niding village. Drive took about 45 mimutes. We hiked through the forest to two pastures. Hike (2 way) took about 4 hours & the terrain is mostly flat with gradual slopes. In the morning, part of the terrain was covered in snow & at noon time, the snow melted revealing mud, rocks & fallen leaves. At one pasture we were able to see yaks grazing while the other was covered in snow. Dongzhulin temple was having their annual celebration & we are so honoured to witness this event together with the locals. Staff, as usual are very friendly & warm. They helped us to re-confirm our stay in Kunming. It took almost half an hour as the Kunming hotel could not find our online reservation. Greatly appreciate the assistance or else we would be in trouble upon arrival.
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