I came to this area first time 2009 and the road from Shangri-la to Deqin was under construction then. Half a year after it was finished the construction started again and is now almost done (besides the tunnel Through Baima Mountain which is supposedly going to be finished next year). Also the road through the village here is paved now and now they are doing the rest of it from the village to the bridge crossing the Mekong.
So some days ago i fried my computer cable but unfortunately the road construction had decided to blow up the road the next day so no bus was leaving the village. You could get to town by hiring a car to the construction site, hiking over it and getting another one from the other side. But that was a bit too much trouble so I decided to wait for a few days. Yesterday the bus was running again so I went to Deqin and luckily found a cable there saving me a trip to Shangri-la (again). Deiqin is a two street town with really nothing to do so I sat at the bus station reading my book. There’s a lot of construction happening in Deqin as well as the number of tourists is expected to explode especially next year which is the birth year of Kawa Gepo, the highest peak of Meili Mountains and holy to the Tibetans.
At one o’clock I got a call from my Tibetan brother that he was driving his friend’s car to the village and i could have a ride with him saving me from 2 hours of waiting (or so I thought). We got maybe half way to the bridge when the traffic was stopped first time because of constructions but it was only half an hour waiting. Then just before the bridge the traffic was stopped again. Road to Mingyong was open but you couldn’t go to Xidang before 5 which meant 2 hours of waiting.
Most cars turned back to Deqin at this point. My brother waited for an hour before he realized that the car he was driving wouldn’t make it over the construction site anyways. So he arranged me a drive in the only other car still waiting to get through. And this turned out to be the sunniest day of the week with no shade on this side of the river. And then half an hour before we could get through huge part of the slope fell down to the road!
Ah, this meant more waiting and waiting while they cleared the road. And the slope wasn’t very stable so there were several smaller slides every time the wind picked up. Finally after 6 they started letting cars through from the other side. Some tourists decided to leave the car and ran through the slide. And then it was our turn. And here we go…
And made it through without any problems! 🙂