Lying on a bed suspended along the cliff, reading a favorite book, sipping a beer and watching the clouds in the sky in Lan Ty valley, Lang Son, is an experience few people have.
In 10 consecutive days at the end of April, Ms. Thuy Duong, living in Hanoi, made two camping trips on steep cliffs (cliff camping). This type of tourism is less popular in Vietnam and there is no private tour. She knew about cliff camping and learned about this subject 5-7 years ago through foreign travel information sites, but only now can it be done.
Her first trip took place in Lan Ty valley, in Lang Son. In addition to familiar activities such as trekking in endemic forests, swinging ropes, and exploring caves, Ms. Duong and her group of friends experienced a new challenge of camping at the cliff near the top of Mat Than mountain. The camping site is suspended in the middle of Lan Ty valley, surrounded by mountains and forests.
“The road to the campsite on the cliff was quite difficult. The first night we set up a tent to sleep in the valley, there was heavy rain and thunder, but the final result was completely worth it. I can lie down on the bed hanging along the cliff, read my favorite book, sip a beer, enjoy the night sky and enjoy the first rays of the day to the fullest,” Duong said.
Attracted by this form of adventure tourism, Ms. Duong continued another trip after only a few days returning from Lan Ty valley. The second place Ms. Duong chose is Phi Lieng waterfall, in Dam Rong district, Lam Dong. The place to do cliff camping is a cliff in the middle of a 115-meter high waterfall.
Duong’s two trips are both licensed adventure tours and cliff camping is a small activity in the schedule. The organizers are fully equipped with safety equipment for camping on the cliffs and are accompanied by experts to provide technical support.
Ms. Duong shared that both trips were memorable and brought back experiences she cherished many years ago. In particular, the cliff camping trip at Phi Lieng Waterfall made her the most impressive.
“I always remember the feeling of waking up while floating on the cliff, welcoming the first rays of the day sun down, behind the majestic waterfall is flowing fast,” said Ms. Duong about her long-held wish has come true. real.
To make the camping trip on the cliffs at Phi Lieng waterfall, Ms. Duong and her team members had to bring 30 kg of safety equipment and beds from Hanoi to Lam Dong. Items are packed so that they can be brought on board.
This waterfall is located deep in the old forest, the entrance is always wet due to the influence of fog and rain. Many sections have muddy puddles formed from the tracks of agricultural vehicles. To reach the waterfall, Duong’s group had to carry equipment on their backs and trek tens of kilometers of forest roads. Arriving, the group set up a tent in a flat place to store things, then swing a rope along the wall to hang the bed as a place to sleep overnight.
The Hanoi girl and her expedition team embarked on a thrilling trekking adventure through the stunning trails of Lan Ty Valley before conquering the God Eye mountain. They went on to experience cliffside camping, truly immersing themselves in the experience.
The place to hang the bed must be a vertical cliff, a surface eligible for piling. The location is open, wide, with a panoramic view of the surrounding landscape.
The bed used is a hanging bed, weighing 15 kg, also known as portaledge. The bed can be folded, disassembled, convenient to carry during travel. The most important factor is firmness to ensure the safety and comfort of the person lying down. Depending on the camping terrain, the bed has different designs.
“The bed during the conquest of Phi Lieng waterfall was also used when camping at Mat Than mountain. In order to have this bed, the expert in my team had to spend a lot of time researching and calculating the most reasonable joints, weight, and lining of the bed, “said Ms. Duong.
The bed is covered by zippers, fixed with iron chains and some other specialized devices to keep balance and ensure safety at height. Guests lying on the bed will tie their bodies to a lifeline.
“Always fastening yourself with safety devices until you get out of the danger zone is a must. Inconvenience is inevitable but it is not a problem compared to safety. I have been practicing and getting used to these devices continuously for many months so that moving up and out of bed is not a problem, “said Duong.
At Lan Ty Valley, Ms. Dương and the group choosing to set up camp on the cliffside of God Eye Moutain. This location boasts a breathtaking view, allowing them to cast their gaze far and wide to take in the entire valley below.
Safety is always a top priority on cliff camping trips. All equipment is thoroughly tested before implementation. Each device has a replacement and backup plan. Participants always have 2-3 protective gear on their body and are accompanied by an expert to supervise, so the risk is almost zero. Ms. Duong said she had carefully considered the risk issue before deciding to participate. Because for her, passion is still behind the responsibilities and obligations to the family.
Before the trip, Ms. Duong carefully researched the information and how to use each device. She had to practice using the device with a specialist twice a week for several months to master it. Thanks to more than 5 years of experience in climbing and trekking most of the 15 peaks in Vietnam, Ms. Duong “doesn’t get shocked when hanging on a rope or standing in a high position”. In previous climbs, the female tourist used to use some similar safety equipment, so there were no surprises.
The night of camping in the valley was marked by a heavy rainstorm and thunderous lightning, unforgettable experiences.
Ms. Dương successfully conquered the challenge of camping on a cliff, savoring the unique sensation of being suspended in mid-air on a hanging tent.
Most recently, she also had the opportunity to experience cliffside camping at Phi Lieng Waterfall in Lam Dong, following her thrilling and exciting adventure in Lang Son.
Cliff camping is developed by professional mountaineers around the world, in order to elevate the travel experience to discover nature. According to CNN , the concept of cliff camping was first known in 2015, when Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorges completed the feat of climbing the “Wall of Dawn” – one of the most difficult cliffs in the world in El Capitan. (California, USA). Cliff camping also began to be popular in Yosemita National Park (California (USA), Estes Park (Colorado, USA) and gradually spread to China, Canada and Colombia. physical strength and good climbing technique, people who are exposed for the first time are prone to dizziness.
In Vietnam, cliff camping is not yet popular due to few locations with suitable terrain. In addition, not many adventure travel companies operate this service.
“To experience this activity in Vietnam, visitors must go through professional travel companies that are licensed to operate, fully equipped with safety equipment and accompanied by experts. The trips are in the form of private, served according to the needs of customers, so the cost is different, “said Ms. Duong.
Phan Dau – Picture: Khinh Vu Phi Duong