Horror in Songpan

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Horror in Songpan

Postby long_way » Mon Oct 25, 2010 7:49 am

Horror in Songpan

24-Oct-2010 02:09
Posts: 2

My friends and I just came back from a terrible horse trek in Songpan, Sichuan. We were with Shun Jiang Horse Treks, which is actually the only agency that books such tours in Songpan. If you were thinking of doing the same, please read our story and reconsider. We opted for the three-day trek to ice mountain, and paid 660 yuans per person, inclusive of all meals, guides and camping gear.

Day 1: One of the two guides insists to take my backpack and to secure it on a horse for me. Later on that day, I realize that my bag has been opened, and I am missing a stack of 10-yuan bills. Then, we are told that won't be camping as planned, but rather we'll sleep in a Tibetan house. We were kind of disappointed not to camp, and unhappy to see how they change aspects of a tour we've already paid for without consulting us. We slept directly on the wooden floor, next to the guides. Moreover, while we were told we'd have three meals a day, we only had two. We were told to bring snacks, but not a whole lunch! Chomping on a handful of peanuts really isn't enough when your spend a whole day horse-back riding and hiking.

Day 2: I wake up earlier than my friends and choose to read a book by myself by the kitchen stove. One of the guides sits next to me and starts to molest me. I had to tell him to back-off! Towards the end of the afternoon, I guess the guides were sick of riding since they decided to let their horses run free in the front while they walked behind. For some reason, one of the free horses kicked and started to run. My friend's horse got scared, and ejected her. My boyfriend and I stared in horror as her body violently collapsed on the rocky water-stream we were following.

Seriously hurt, she could barely walk. We made it back to the Tibetan village and the guides acted as if nothing happened. We asked one of them to get us a car back to Songpan, but then, suddenly, he pretended not to understand English any more. We literally took his cell phone from him and called his boss in Songpan. The guy understood our story, but when we put the guide on the phone for him to tell his boss we we actually were, since we had no idea at all and the area is pretty remote, the guide hung-up. He said the call was too expensive.

During that time, our friend is trying to cope with the pain and has trouble breathing. Later on, she found out that she had two broken ribs. The guide kept trying to convince her to spend the night at the village and ride back to Songpan the day after, on a horse, as planned. He obviously did not care about her pain and did not understand at all the emergency of the situation. We had never felt so remote and helpless.

Unfortunately, our only option left was the universal language of fists. Magically, a car was there for us three hours later. Back in Songpan, Shun Jiang asked us for 300 yuans, to pay for the unexpected transportation. We refused to pay them, since anyway they would not refund the third day of trek we couldn’t do anymore. Luckily, as soon as she was back in Chengdu, our friend got the medical attention she required and found out that there was no complications with her broken bones.

Horseback riding can be dangerous sometimes, and we were very well aware of the risks. The guides aren't really responsible for her fall, even if in our opinion, it was careless to let two horses run free in the front. Rather, we are mad at them for all the reasons mentioned above and especially for the way they reacted (or did not react) to an emergency. These people are not smart enough nor qualified enough for what they do. Moreover, it was very annoying to feel like they were cutting on food and accommodation just to get a couple more yuans in profit.

Let's show these people that they cannot keep on acting carelessly without consequences. They are not worth your business, let alone your money. Spread the word!

Source: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/t ... ID=1975777
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