Huashan Video

I shot this using Lauren’s digital camera from the gusty top of Huashan’s “Plank Path”. I’ve never posted a video before, so bear with the quality. Hope you enjoy!

(Incidentally, I tried to do this using YouTube, but couldn’t get the clip to upload, so I ended up going with Google Video. Nice to have options)


55 Responses to “Huashan Video”

  1. david Says:

    somehow ‘my yahoo’ deleted all my rss feeds from my home page for about 3 weeks and yesterday they re-appeared. so today i saw all the posts about your november travels. the plank path video is just awesome (and so china). looks like it was a fantastic trip.

    i really like your names for the fantasmical creatures at the summer palace. i’m guessing they’re on the overhead beams on the restored staircase coming down from the highest temple there up on the hill. i took pictures of most of those creatures too…favorite names were the ardvarkelope and chesire lion-o-dillo.


  2. scate Says:

    It looks like people are wearing white gloves. Why is that?

    (Oh, and that path looks scary and dangerous as hell…)

  3. Second Life Loser » Scary plank against Huashan mountain cliff Says:

    […] Harry shot a short video of a wooden plank attached to a very high cliff on the windy top of Huashan mountain in China. Link […]

  4. piotrdiy Says:

    And great you used the vertical mode.

  5. piotrdiy Says:

    They are using gloves to get a better grip to the chains.

  6. Ed T. Says:

    Oh my! I don’t know which would be more frightening, the path or climbing out on that tree to film others on the path…

    Thanks for sharing the vid!

  7. Paul Says:

    Where does this plank path lead to?

  8. Bordog Says:

    You can’t see jack in this video. How the hell did this get Boing Boinged, or Slogged, or however I managed to find this crud. 0.3 out of 5 stars.

  9. Harry Says:

    Hey, thanks for all the comments… even Bordog’s dismissal was informative. I didn’t realize this had been ‘Boing Boinged’.

    The path was pretty freaky, but the equipment seemed moderately reliable and the guywire sturdy.

    The path leads to a small deadend rock outcrop with a “swallet” (inside joke for anyone who’s visited Putuoshan). Basically, there’s a Daoist shrine in a shallow cave and a tree growing horizontally over a 1000 foot drop.

    Those $0.12 gloves were a life saver. A farmer woman at the bottom of the mountain implored us to buy them and we’re glad we listened. Your body works up a fair bit of heat hiking the trail but the steel chains absorbed only the October chill and were numbing to touch. Not to mention rusty.

  10. EricK Says:

    Stop tilting the camera. It’s not making it easier to see anything.

    Stop waving the camera around like a maniac. It’s a camera, not a Wagner Power Painter. You need to move the camera slowly and smoothly in order for people watchign to see anything. The object isn’t to cover teh most area in the least time.

  11. Lucky Says:

    Naysayers, screw.

    Let’s see you do this, then think cleary. And be able to take good video.

  12. duus Says:

    awesome trip, man, thanks for sharing.

    I’m glad i read the comments, for this: “(inside joke for anyone who’s visited Putuoshan)”

    and the asshats who are dissing your vid. whatever, man. thanks.

  13. fresh wordpress installation » Scary plank against Huashan mountain cliff Says:

    […] Harry shot a short video of a wooden plank attached to a very high cliff on the windy top of Huashan mountain in China. Link […]

  14. Garrett Says:

    Wow! My heart would be POUNDING…. which is why i am jealous you got to do that! 🙂

  15. Frenchman Says:

    Fantastic! And totally mad, you must have been a little…er…apprehensive at some point? Me, I’d have been scared witless. Big thanks for having taken the trouble to shoot it and post it. (And take no notice of the tosspots crtiticising your video technique – bet they’re all sat at home with their thumbs up their asses.)

  16. Slip'n'Slide Says:

    Wowww! My friend wants me to go zip-lining down a ski slope, but that’s nothing compared to this! Thanks for posting this, found you via Boing Boing…

  17. Gonzoid Says:

    Fantastic. And utterly scary to this acrophobic.

  18. owl Says:


    You may not be aware of this, but the video isn’t in teh real time.

  19. cha0tic Says:

    I’ve never visited Putuoshan. So could you tell me what “swallet” is please. Looks like fun though. Have you seen the via ferrata in Italy? Something I’ve fancied doing as it’s a bit closer than China.

  20. » Why do all of the good posts come on Fridays? Says:

    […] nothing to do with one another but if you aren’t working you might want to check out this extreme plank walking video. If you are still thinking about work then the Interaction Design Pattern Library is a great […]

  21. Plank Path « stuff brie might like to watch/read/play Says:

    […] Sep 28th, 2007 by mrdot It sounds so harmless, but just watching the video makes me want to puke. […]

  22. Michele Ellington Says:

    Just got back from a trip to China and we did a Huangshan tour but the path we took was much safer. Even so it was scary to me, I even found the cable car ride unnerving! I’m glad you were able to do the plank part, it’s an experience of a lifetime, no doubt!

  23. ted mills Says:


    I would never have the nuts to walk that plank!!

  24. Tim Says:

    Holy S#$T!!!!!!

  25. » Blog Archive » Scary plank against Huashan mountain cliff Says:

    […] Harry shot a short video of a wooden plank attached to a very high cliff on the windy top of Huashan mountain in China. Link […]

  26. Sean Says:

    OMFG! Better you than me! Thanks –

  27. Alan Says:

    Creeping along that plank is an example of a position or situation that climbers blithely describe as “exposed.” Acrophobes, beware!

  28. William Says:

    Holy crap! That’s terrifying just sitting in my chair at home. Did you need special tools to get your testicles to come back out?

  29. Harry Says:


    Apparently a “swallet” is a shallow cave – in which a man hid from a storm on Putuoshan and then later consecrated the site as a Buddhist shrine. Sadly, no dictionary I’ve ever looked in contains this particular ‘translation’ 😉

    And, as with many things in China, the real swallet is gone, replaced by a poured concrete mock swallet.

    The swallet also served to strengthen suspicions I hold about just why people in modern China still choose to become monks. (For further fun, read this article about monks getting their MBA at Shanghai Jiaotong University – and a temple with an escalator.)

    I’ve never been to the via Ferrata but would love to! One day…

  30. Lauren Says:

    these comments are really funny Harry. I had not seen that film yet you know. Almost a year later! That was fun.

  31. John Johnson Says:

    From a virtual rock climber…wow! Envy all around…what an experience it must have been. Now, how do I extract myself from this com and do something real? Inspiring for sure, and it will push me in just the right way…along not down!

  32. scott Says:

    I have frequent bad dreams about places like this!
    I think you are completely out of your tiny minds.

  33. Jess Says:

    That is hands down the coolest fucking thing I have seen in a long time. I need to go there and do that one day.

  34. music Says:

    very interesting.
    i’m adding in RSS Reader

  35. asdf Says:


  36. Mike Says:

    That trail is strictly for the young. I could handle the wooden plank, but not the steep stairs. You guys are crazy. One question, is there a destination, or do you have to come back the way you went up? I would never go for a round trip!!!!!

  37. Jean Says:

    Thanks, Harry, for sharing the info about the plank walk. I’m 65 and would still love to do something like that some day. Mind still works even if body doesn’t alway cooperate!

  38. Carol Says:

    Thanks for sharing fantastic pictures and a su..bpurb hike. I would have loved to have done that at a younger age. A thrill of a lifetime. My most thrill has been rides on a stand up roller coaster before they declared them unsafe in the u.s. parks.

  39. Carol Says:

    That was a fantastic hike. Beautiful. I would like to have done that at a younger age. I would have liked to stay overnight at thier shrine. My most thrill was riding on the stand-up roller coaster before they removed them in the u.s. parks after 2 deaths of people falling thru the harness. I know I thought, What if I should faint? I would just slip right on out of here. It was a heart pumping thrill for me.

  40. Mt Huashan Hiking Trail @ hello! yoshi Says:

    […] those of you who want to experience the video, it’s located here. The video entails the section of the North Peak where you walk across the planks. Most people […]

  41. Do It Scared! » Blog Archive » The Teahouse from Heck Says:

    […] believe this post is the original. There is also a video of the plank path. Leave a […]

  42. Marc Says:

    My hat is off to anyone who does this hike/climb; I have a paralyzing fear of heights, and it was the first time I’ve experienced my heart doing flip-flops while seated in my perfectly safe chair in my perfectly safe office. I couldn’t make that trip for love nor money or even in a conscious state!

  43. RaiulBaztepo Says:

    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language 😉
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

  44. Imajicka1 Says:

    Awesome vid! I actually find the fact that you climbed out onto the tree (in stiff wind and with no harnesses, I’m assuming) more impressive than the plank walk, itself.

    I would actually consider going up Huashan. I have a fear of heights, but for some reason, its not as bad when I’m on mountains as it is when I’m on buildings or bridges. I would probably never take the trail to South Peak (which includes the plank walk). Everything else on Huashan looks doable. I’d just as soon pick a day when there aren’t so many people.

    By the way, professional alpinists and mountaineers probably giggle when they see this vid; Huashan doesn’t quite compare to a K2 or an Annapurna.

    • Harry Says:

      @Imajicka1 Very true, it’s not a venture to excite real alpinists. Though I think that’s exactly why it’s a fascinating place. It’s offers bizarrely accessible danger.

  45. Imajicka1 Says:

    Hey, really quick question. Were there safety harnesses back in 2006 when you went? I’m assuming there were, but I don’t see any in the vid.

  46. Harry Says:

    Yes, there were harnesses. They seemed relatively new. Though, if anything were to go wrong it’s probably not the harness but rather the karabiners, quality unknown. Or worse, the guide wires/planks pegged into the mountain. Though they seemed pretty solid.

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  50. Lemuel Stevenson Says:

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  51. Daily Missed Says:

    Great Post indeed…hats off

  52. Lorel Says:

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