Mountain pressure

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Mountain pressure The Huangshan Mountain boasts distinctive pine trees.[Photo by Yang Feiyue/China Daily]

As visitor numbers to Huangshan soar, mammoth challenges emerge for ecology officials tasked with protecting the scenic spot. 

Strangely-shaped pine trees, grotesque rock peaks and a sea of clouds all make Huangshan Mountain a special treat for visitors, whether they be hikers, nature lovers or photography buffs.

Located in the south of East China's Anhui province, the mountain range covers an area of 1,200 square kilometers and has long been considered the epitome of classic Chinese landscape scenery.

"You might never understand the beauty of Chinese poetry if you fail to see the scenery Huangshan presents," says Ge Xufang, an official with the Huangshan scenic spot management committee.

Polychromatic trees and flowers carpet Huangshan's vast valleys in late October. Dark green pine trees stand in sharp relief against the rugged milk-white and gray mountain peaks, while clouds shroud some of the lower peaks, all creating a panoramic vision.

The mountain was named a world cultural and natural heritage site back in 1990, and joined the UNESCO-supported Global Geoparks Network in 2004.

There are roughly 90 peaks, each more than 1,000 meters above sea level, and it's a thrilling experience to walk along their precipitous cliffs. Visitors can opt to take the cableway that takes roughly 10 minutes from the foot of the mountain to one of the major tourism attractions, Yuping or Jade Screen Pavilion, to enjoy the hugely popular Guest-Greeting Pine, which is believed to be at least 800 years old.

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