The Heavenly Ladder

Today started off emotional as the whole group dressed in Yellow as a surprise for Kirsty in memory of her daughter Ella who would have been 6 today as it was her favourite colour.

We all jumped up at breakfast in unison and took off their jumpers and jackets to reveal their yellow attire!

We started off the day by walking through a small market area before jumping back on the coach and being taken to subway where we ordered lunch for the day which was a lovely change from the lunches we’ve had over the last few days.

We set-off up the 1000 steps up to the wall which thankfully were modern and all the same height but having walked for the last 4 days was still a challenge in itself.

Once we got to the top, it was a very undulating walk with yet more steps and steep paths and several watch towers. Thankfully even though we were more spread out today the yellow meant we were easier to spot among the greater number of people on the wall today.

We eventually arrived at the foot of the heavenly ladder to re-group and everyone was aching and several people are carrying minor injuries but we all powered through and set-off together.

As we climbed it seemed never ending as these steps were a lot steeper than earlier so we broke into a few songs which lifted spirits and we even got a few cheers along the way.

The last 20 steps required hands and knees but thankfully was the only bit of climbing we did today! There were huge jubilations as we reached the official highest point at the top of the heavenly ladder. We stopped for a photo, another song and of course birthday cake before setting off back down the way we had come.

The walk back the way we had come seemed so much further the 2nd time and the wall seemed never-ending! Thankfully however we didn’t have to climb back down the 1000 steps as we all opted for the option of tobogganing back down the mountain!

We each had to climb into a small toboggan which just one lever that controlled the acceleration and brake of our individual toboggan. It snaked down the mountain side and although it was slightly scary and there was not much instruction we all seemed to enjoy it.

We were rewarded at the bottom with ice-cream sundaes and drinks before heading to the hotel and then off for dinner and a private tour of jade factory, which with a group of all women (bar one) ended in shopping! (apologies to our husbands! But we’ve earnt it!)

We are looking forward to tomorrows walk as we are assured it is an easier one (although we don’t trust them!) and it will be another emotional day as we lay our momentos in the wall that we are helping re-build.

Treena and Kirsty