DATES OF TRAVEL: 03/25/2016-03/28/2016
Traveling to Jiangkou where we began our stay to partake in the PES study took us 3 days. We began our travels on March 25, 2016 taking a plane from SD to LAX. We then flew from LAX to Shanghai and our last flight from Shanghai took us too Changsha. The flight from LAX to Shanghai was just over 13 hours where they served us dinner and breakfast. Each seat had it’s own personal touch screen TV where you could select from a variety of new movies, tv shows, music or games.
Once we landed in Changsha we stayed at a beautiful hotel called the Star Shar hotel. The hotel was very impressive and reminded me of something you would find in Vegas. The floors and walls were made of marble and there were several wooden carvings that were incredibly detailed and most certainly took the craftsman many hours to complete. In the morning, after breakfast, we took a high speed train from Changsha to Tongrenaan. The train traveled at an average of 300 km per hour and we were able to get to our destination in 2.5 hours!
The land features and formation along the way were nothing like anything I have ever seen, the views were absolutely stunning and it was amazing to see all the agricultural lands and all the construction and engineering projects taking place. The reserve personnel picked us up at our stop in Tongrenaan and brought us to Sofitel International Hotel. We ate dinner with reserve staff and researchers where we introduced ourselves and found out more about the project and how we would be assisting in the research.
We spent the night in the hotel and prepared for 3 day trip into reserve. It took me several days to get used to the time difference and a few days of waking up at 3 o’clock AM before I was finally able to get over the jet lag. After breakfast at the hotel we left in the morning for the reserve to spend the next several days at a Ranger’s house. We arrived at Shaudon’s house and ate a second breakfast before we ventured off to our first site inside the reserve to record field data.