It has been several days since we came back from Yunnan. I always think about the days when we visited there, miss the endless mountains and rivers, the beautiful canyon, and the magnificent sea of clouds. To be honest, I have been visited many tea mountains before, but Yunnan seems has a unique charm, which keeps me hanging on and gives me many meaningful afterthoughts. There must be such a pure land in everyone’s heart, and Yunnan is the pure land of mine. I decide to sit down and brew a cup of 2017 harvest Yunnan Dian Hong Ancient Wild Tree Black Tea. Scenes of the Yunnan trip flows out one by one along with the fragrance of tea…
Yunnan is briefly named “Dian”, which also been called “the south of colorful clouds (彩云之南)” in China. Only this name will causes many endless reveries, while Yunnan also becomes the dreaming paradise for countless travelers. Meanwhile, Yunnan is a very important tea producing area in China, Dian Hong black tea and Pu’erh tea are all come from here. This time, the destination of our tea trip is the hometown of Dian Hong black tea - Fengqing County, Lincang.
This tea trip lasted 5 days with total 4200 km.
Route: Chengdu – Linan, Hangzhou – Kunming – Lincang – Fengqing – Tea garden.
The first station is Bao Jia organic tea garden, located in Linan, Hangzhou. We are here for the 2017 Organic She Qian Dragon Well Green Tea. Mountains in Hangzhou are elegant, which forms a sharp contrast with the high mountains and splendid clouds sea in Yunnan. Here are some photos of Hangzhou tea garden, and you will see the different style of Yunnan later.
Baojia Organic Tea Garden
Tea farmers are picking the tea leaves
Wu Niu Zao (乌牛早) tea trees —— the tea bush of Organic She Qian and Organic Ming Qian Dragon Well
let’s get into the “the south of colorful clouds (彩云之南)”,
the hometown of Dian Hong black tea – Fengqing.
There’s no airport in Fengqing, so our route in first day is:
It’s close to noon when we arrived at Kunming Changshui International Airport. Buildings here are in very special Yunnan style.
In the afternoon, we transited to Lincang City, the plane suddenly shook up when landed, which made me feel uneasy, but finally we landed safely.
Lincang Airport is the smallest airport I have ever seen, since there is only one track.
Mr. Zhou, who picked us up on the airport, told us that Lincang has strong monsoon, flights from other place to Lincang are often unable to land due to the strong air. We are so lucky today, because the flight before ours was unable to land and has to flight back to Kunming.
After 3 hours driving, we finally arrived in our destination, Fengqing County.
Fengqing County is located in the southwest of Yunnan Province, and the northwest of Lincang City, it is considered to be one of the best areas for the growing of tea trees. Due to the subtropical monsoon climate, the annual average temperature here is 16.5 ℃. Fengqing has abundant sunshine and concentrated rainfall, the climate is fairly mild in winter and rather cool in summer. The major rivers here belong to Langcang River system and Nu River system. Fengqing has a long history of tea growing and making tea, there is an over 3200-year-old ancient tea tree, and more than 3,294 acres (20,000 mu) of ancient tea garden and 4,942 acres (30,000 mu) of wild ancient tea trees, which have been cultivated before hundreds years ago.
‖ Day Two ‖
Today, we were going to visit the tea garden of wild ancient tea trees, which is located in Pinghe Village, Dasi Township.
There are about 3 hours driving distance from Fengqing to Pinghe. The car was speeding across the mountains, and we can see some clouds floating miles away. Suddenly, after turned around a foot of mountain, a sea of clouds appears in front of our eyes. And here, is the Baiyun Village.
The endless mountains, the white clouds, and the fresh breeze. As if we were staying in the fairyland.
Camera just can record a little.
However, the sea of clouds changed very fast, it pervaded everywhere within a few minutes. As if all the mountains and canyons were suddenly been erased, only left a vast expanse of white.
The clouds suddenly surrounded us, and we had to drive through it.
Past through a virgin forest.
The feces of black goats are often the best nutrient source for tea trees.
The clouds started disappearing, and the sky was gradually sunny.
Xiaowan Hydropower Station, with a height of nearly 300 meters, is the world highest dam. It is on the midstream of Lancang River, which is located on the junction of Nanjian County and Fengqing County, Dali, Yunnan.
We drove out the main road, bumped near 30 minutes upon the dirt road, and finally arrived at the wild ancient tea garden in Pinghe Village, Dashi Township.
The altitude here is above 2500 and very close to the Lancang River.
There are more than 100 large wild tea trees, with the average age over 1000 years old. These tea trees grow with natural rain-fed, and without any manual intervention, fertilizer or pesticide.
In the beginning of April, some tea trees were starting to germinate.
So, there were already small-scale picking, but the wide harvest would start in the mid-April. Because the tea trees are very high, tea farmers need to use a bamboo ladder to climb up the trees while picking tea leaves.
The tea buds of large-leaf tea tree (on the left side of the picture) and wild tea tree (on the right side of the picture) are different; the former is covered with fine villus while the latter is smooth and shiny.
Contrast of leaf blade, above is the wild tea tree, below is the large-leaf tea tree.
Unknown wild flowers next to the wild tea trees.
In the primary processing center, we met the fresh tea leaves which were just picked.
Mr. Zhou, who is in charge of the primary processing center, told us that only a small amount of tea leaves can be processed here, a large amount will be transmitted and processed in main factory.
Walked out from the tea garden, overlooked to the distance, we were exposing to range upon range of mountains.
Water is boiling. Let’s enjoy the Yunnan Dian Hong Ancient Wild Tree Black Tea and Fengqing Ancient Tree Spring Chun Jian Pu-erh Tea.
Tomorrow, we are going to visit the tea garden in Lida Village, Desili, Mengyou Town, Fengqing. See you!
Continue reading for more information: Dreamland – Yunnan, Fengqing (Part 2).