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真正的享受... The real thing...

(2007-06-06 15:34:20)

其乃基于 Peter[2007-06-06]博客的翻译本

 

看起来情况不妙,一长溜的旅游巴士,一群导游和一条“建议路线”,很有可能就是在公园游玩的唯一路线。我预备好重新体验一次在张家界的经历 (参见“在‘脱衣舞吧’”一文)。


但我错了。黄果树国家公园给我的震撼是多重的。这里总共有三个风景点,而且据旅游宣传册称,这里共有十八条瀑布,是世界上瀑布最为密集的地方。我看到这样的宣称时通常是抱怀疑态度的,因为这可能是商业炒作。果然,第一个景点陡埔塘,又称湍降瀑布,令人失望。我想你完全可以跳过不看。由于对第一条瀑布感到失望,我于是想跳过第二条,直接去看大瀑布。但幸亏我没有那么做。第二个景点天星桥决不仅仅是一个景点。事实上历时两个多小时的游览让我如痴如醉。


这条路是专门为了让人从最佳角度欣赏这条瀑布而修建的,它因势而建,浑然天成。事实上在中国我还没见过如此匠心独具的设计。不论是谁设计的,他或她显然十分热爱这个地方,竭尽全力想让游客在全自然的环境中充分地欣赏它。

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...


这条路蜿蜒穿过密林,穿过奇异的喀斯特地貌区域,通过天然的桥梁进入深深的峡谷。峡谷常常是那么地窄,我不得不卸下背包侧身曳步而行。在这里你可以充分地感受到亚热带雨林的氛围,非常潮湿,到处是爬行动物,还有嵌在每块岩石上生机勃勃的树根。就这样,我不禁想起了吴哥窟附近暹粒的塔普伦寺来。当然,在黄果树没有大自然作用下摇摇欲坠的寺庙,但是却不乏被大树的盘根错节箍定的岩石。所以,这里的感觉、光线和气味都和塔普伦寺一样。


这条路走了三分之二的样子就到了天星洞。沿着从外面穿进来的一条滴着水的通道走,仅走数百米后就到了一个巨大而古老的钟乳石岩洞。所有的石头都十分圆滑,这是水长年累月对岩洞内部不断冲击和打磨的结果。和我在中国见到的其他洞穴不同,这里的灯光十分柔和,几乎全是单色的,这样的设计显然和那条路出自同一人的眼光和手笔。四处点缀着一些绿色和红色的灯光,但它们都不刺眼。我无法想象第一位来到这里的探险者闯入这里看到这样的奇观时的感受,也许他们想用火把照亮各个方向,难以置信地发现火把微弱的光芒既照不到这个庞大洞穴的尽头,也照不到它的洞壁和洞顶。

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...


在洞穴里消磨了一会儿时间后,我出了洞,继续沿着小路往前走。结果很快就走到了头,太快了,简直想倒回去重走一遍……真是一次难以忘怀的体验。


匆匆吃过午饭以后,我动身前往这个景区的中心景点黄果树大瀑布。和我刚才所描述的天然小径相比,来这里的游人要多得多,但还是绝对值得一游的。我想我来得正是时候,此时瀑布水量充足,让人印象深刻,但又不至于多得象一帘巨大的水幕。实际上,水从上面倾泻而下,墨绿色的狭长岩石表面还隐约可见,这让瀑布看上去有种图案美。

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...


我见过不少瀑布,比如奥地利的克里姆大瀑布特别高,美国纽约州和加拿大的尼亚加拉大瀑布特别宽,但还是昨天看到的黄果树大瀑布给我的印象最深。原因之一是不论是上面还是下面我都能近距离地欣赏它。另外,在瀑布后面,岩石表面凿出了一条狭窄的滴水小径。在几个不同的位置我都能从水帘后面往外看。多么美丽的景观啊!我对我的手机能不能把它的神韵拍下来一点都没有把握,但下面这张照片拍得惊人地漂亮,的确很好地重现了我所看到的景色。

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...


黄果树公园让我留连忘返。我还想说,我之所以那么喜欢这里,还因为这里的人没有张家界或黄山那么多。但我想绝不仅止于此。它是一个绝妙的公园,人们可以不需导游,按自己的速度,往任意的方向漫步游览。最棒的是,你可以停下脚步,欣赏并且触摸自然。换句话说,跟在脱衣舞吧是完全不一样的。这才是真正的享受啊!
 

 

It didn’t look good to start – a long file of tour buses, a horde of tour guides and “a suggested path” – meaning, there most likely there’d be only one way to enjoy the park.  I braced myself for another Zhangjiajie experience.  (See 'In a strip bar')

 

But I was wrong.   The Huangguoshu National Park touched me in more ways than one.    There are three scenic spots.  In addition, the brochure points out, a total of eighteen waterfalls making it the world’s mostly densely “waterfall” populated area.  I am usually sceptical when I read claims like this because it reeks of commercial exploration.   And sure enough, the first scenic spot, Douputang (陡埔塘), or cascading waterfall, was a disappointment that I think you can easily skip.      Because it was so disappointing, I was inclined to skip the second one and head straight for the large waterfall.   But thankfully I didn’t.  The second scenic spot, Tianxingqiao(天星桥), is much more than a scenic spot: it is in fact a two-hour-plus scenic trail that left me enchanted.      

 

The path, specifically designed to show off this beautiful part of the world in its best light, blends beautifully into its natural surroundings.  In fact, I’ve never seen anything as tastefully done in China.    Whoever has designed it quite clearly loves the area and wanted to do everything possible to allow visitors to enjoy it the way it is meant to be done – in an all natural setting.

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

The path meanders in the midst of a thickly grown forest, through bizarre karst formations, across natural bridges, into deep gorges and often is so narrow that I had to take of my backpack off and shuffle through sideways.   It feels richly sub-tropical, what with enormous humidity, creepy-crawlies everywhere, and these feisty roots pinning down every rock.  In this way, this walk reminds of Siem Reap’s Ta Prohm temple near Angkor Wat.   Of course, here at Huangguoshu there are no crumbly temples that nature has decided to reclaim, but there are plenty of rocks upon which the trees have staked out their claim.   And so, the mood, the light and the smells are all those of Ta Prohm.

About two-thirds along the path, there is the Tianxing Cave (天星洞).   Only hundred meters in from the outside along a narrow, dripping walkway, there is a giant chamber of ancient stalactites and stalagmites.     All the stones are smooth and round, telling an endless of history of water steadily forming and reforming the cave’s interior.   In contrast to other caves I’ve seen in China, the lighting is kept subdued and almost all monochrome – clearly the consistent hand and eye of one path designer at work.    Here and there a bit of green or red light is used to highlight some spots, but they don’t offend the eye.    I can’t begin to imagine how the first explorers must have felt when they stumbled into this marvel, probably aiming their torches in this direction and that, not believing that their feeble lights would neither illuminate the end, nor the width or height of this monumental cavern. 

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

After whiling some time away in the cave, I returned to daylight and continued along the path.   When I reached the end far too soon, I almost wanted to walk it backwards…it was an unforgettable experience.   

 

After a quick lunch, I moved on to the central attraction of this area, the giant Huangguoshu waterfall.    While it is much more visited than the nature trail I just described, it is definitely also worth a visit.   I think I visited the fall at just the right time – enough water was flowing across it to make it impressive, yet not so much water that the fall would appear as one giant sheet of water.  Instead, the water rushing down  left narrow strips of mossy-green rock face visible to give the fall a beautiful pattern.  

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

I’ve seen quite a few water falls – for example, the Krimmler Waterfalls in Austria which are particularly tall, the Niagara Falls in New York State/Canada which are massively wide– but the Huangguoshu falls I saw yesterday left the deepest impression.  For one, I was able to get very near it, both from below as well as above.  What’s more, there is a narrow, dripping path that leads through the rock face behind the water falls.   At various points, I was able to look out from behind the curtain of falling water.   What a spectacle!  (I wasn’t at all sure whether my phone could make any sense of it, but the photo below ended up surprisingly good…it really gives a rather good impression of the view that presented itself to me.)

 

真正的享受... <wbr>The <wbr>real <wbr>thing...

 

Huangguoshu is a park that I regretted leaving.  I am tempted to say that I liked it so much because there weren’t as many people as at Zhangjiajie (or Huangshan).  But I think there was more to it – it simply is a gorgeous park, and one can easily do all the walks without a tour guide, at one’s own pace, in any direction one likes.    Best of all, one can stop, look and touch nature.  In other words, not like in a strip bar at all.  This is the real thing.

 

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