Rainbow-Ropeway over the Clouds on Sep.6, 2005, Mount Tianmen Ropeway, the longest passenger ropeway over high mountains in the world started operation. It also marked the formal open of Mount Tianmen National Forest Park. The length of Mount Tianmen Ropeway reaches to 7455m, with a latitudinal level distance of 1279m between the Upper and Middle Station, and its maximum gradient reaches to 38 degree. It is rare both home and abroad. It starts from the Lower Station located at the northern side of the mountain, ascends along the peak. There are hundreds meters of green lands under the ropeway, and if one looks toward to the south, the Tianmen Cave is waiting there, hanging over the sky.
Winding Road to the Heaven the Road to the Sky climbs up to the top of the mountain, winding and bending along. It connects the Tianmen Cave which is known as “the Door to eh Heaven”, thus it is named as “Road to the Heaven”. The total length of the road is 11km, stretching between the latitudinal level distances from 200m to 1100m. 99 turnings are a real task and test for one’s driving skills. Both sides of the road are deep valleys and cliffs. Bending points with 180 degree’s angle follows one by one. The road looks like a castle or the Great Wall floating over the clouds if it is looked up, while it appears as a romantic ribbon and a curve if overlooked.
Passing through the Tianmen (Heaven’s Gate) Tianmen Cave (Heaven’s Gate Cave) locates at the cliff of 1264m in height. It is 131.5m in the height and 60m in the depth. The narrowest point at the gate is 28.3m. In December 1999, world aerobatics masters flied over the cave for the first time, which attracted the whole world’s attention to Mount Tianmen. In March 2006, Russia-27 heavy fighters and heroes from Russian Air Force wrote another wonder over the sky of Mount Tianmen.
The temple was built in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). It was originally built at the east side near the Holy Pool (Ling Quan), and called as “Holy Pool Temple” (Lingquan Temple). It declined due to the reason of being out of repair. In the Jin Dynasty (265-420), a hermit named Zhou Piao lived here. Till the Song Synasty, a monk named as Sijue begged alms and pooled money to rebuild a temple near the Dan Ding Zao peak at the west part of the top of the Mount Chisong, and named it as Songliang Temple. In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), a Mount Tianmen Temple was built at the Nanyan Mount, two Li at the east part of the Songliang Temple. The towers of the temple still stand among the ancient trees, elegant and quiet, yet the temple has been long abandoned. In 2006, a new Mount Tianmen Temple was built near the original location of Mount Tianmen Temple. It is close to the Cherry Bay, and covers an area of over 10,000squre meters. It was built in the architectural style of the Qing Dynasty(1644-1911), elegant and splendid, consisting buildings including Bell and Drum Tower, Heaven King’s Hall, the Great Hall, Guanyin Pavilion and Depository, etc
Sceneries in Different Seasons
Snow of Tianmen Mountain
Snow of Tianmen Mountain
The winter still lingers, but the mountains have been covered with green trees full of spring air. The spring in this area has plenty of rainfalls, thus it is the best season to visit Mount Tianmen and experience the wonderful sights of the clouds. Mount Tianmen is cool and fresh in the summer; the temperature in the mountain is comparatively lower for 10 ℃ than that of down the feet of mountain, which makes it one of the best summer resorts. In the autumn, the temperature in Mount Tianmen is warm and comfortable, with yellow leaves and colorful flowers, and natural fruits such as kiwi berries, litchi chinensis, and chestnuts and so on. In the winter, Mount Tianmen is more beautiful than a northern kingdom. Mount Tianmen in a sunny day after snow is even more attractive than any time. The blue sky, white snow and the shinning branches of the trees in the sunlight; all these natural beauties help to build the Mount Tianmen a heaven in the legend.
Spring of Tianmen Mountain
Garden in the Air The forest at the top of the Mount Tianmen is the primeval forest, in which grow many rare species, among them, the Davidia involucrata, incense trees, dyeriana, Dayong Carpinus and Mount Tianmen azalea. Davidia involucrate is called as “Dove flowers” by the local people; Rare it is, it is regarded as the “Panda of the plants”; yet the Davidia involucrata group that contains more than one hundred strains growing over an altitude over 1500m are even rarer all over the world. As a natural community with more than 530 species of wide plants, Mount Tianmen deserves the name of Garden in the Air. Besides, Mount Tianmen is full of wide fruits, in January there is “Wine-ice fruit”, in February there’s “Bang Milk berry”;strawberry follows in the March, and in April, it comes the loquat, and then comes the cherry in May. Peaches are ripe in June, and pear in July; In August, carambola is ready and in September, Chestnut and wild litchi become ripe. In October, Laba melon is eaten; and when the winter comes in November, there’s lilac persimmon, and in December, a local berry called “Jiu Bing Liang” (Reinforcements’ Brain Berry) are ready for eat.
Ghost Valley Plank Road
Ghost Plank Road is located in the wonderland of fairy-seeking. It is hanged over the cliffs over the Ghost Valley Cave, and so it is named after the cave. The altitude of the plank road is over 1400m, which ranks it to the most difficult plank road built in China. Its total length is 1600 m. Standing on the plank road, one can see the birds flying below. The broad view on the plank road can be vividly expressed by a line from a Chinese ancient poem, “Reach the top of the mountain, and all mountains are held in a single glance”. It shall become a wonderful memory that one can never forget.
In 2007, the famous French Spiderman broke the myth, and successfully climbed over the Tianmen Cave bare-handed. The beautiful flower of courage and braveness blossomed over the life-and-death cliff, and Tianmen Cave, even since that moment, has become the birthplace of miracles.
Rock Climbing on Tianmen Mountain
The Third Asia Cup Rock Climbing Competition was held on November 5, 2007. Four items of male and female difficulty and speed were set. The artificial rock wall, 15m in height and 14m in width, was set on the famous scenic area Mount Tianmen whose latitude is over 1300 m. Players from more than one dozen countries and regions participated in the competition, including those who came from South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, China and Hongkong, Macao, China Taipei and so on.
In 2001, Huang Yongyu, the world famous master of painting and calligraphy and essayist splashed ink and painted a picture of Mount Tianmen with its magic, spectacular and elegant sceneries. He wrote down the 435 characters inscriptions in a spontaneous yet free and smooth style, expressed all his attachments, praise and wishes towards his hometown.
Ni Na cabin on Tianmen Mountain
In 1997, Li Na, the Chinese famous singer, visited the undeveloped Mount Tianmen, and lived there for several months in a cabin built on the top of the mountain. During her stay, she fully embraced the grace of the Buddha in the Mount Tianmen, and determined to leave the mortal world. She became a Buddhist nun in Wutai Mountain with the monastic name of “Shi Chang Sheng”. She is living in the United States now, yet her heart still goes to Mount Tianmen. She promised that when the Mount Tianmen Temple is built, she will come back to visit this place of her “Conditioning Cause”.