My friends Yehudi Edgeworth, Madge Dodd, and I share a love for hunting. This year, we decided to go hunting in the Liping National Forest Park in Hanzhong, Shaanxi Province, China to experience different customs and natural scenery. Leping National Forest Park is a mountainous provincial forest park with various landscapes such as primitive forests, stone forests, canyons, waterfalls, and more. It has been dubbed as “the green pearl of Bashan,” “the Swiss of the east,” “the wonderland of stone forests and paradise of blue waters.” We planned to stay there for a few days, visit various attractions during the day, and hunt for game in the forest at night.
Since we would be hunting at night, we needed a high-performance night vision device to help us. After searching online, we chose a brand called Wildguarder from Shenzhen, China. We picked their NB12 binoculars with night vision capability. The device uses a CMOS sensor that is sensitive to infrared light and has a 5W 850nm LED infrared illuminator, allowing us to observe and record a target up to 984 feet away even in complete darkness. It also has a 2.7-inch LCD screen, allowing us to view images and videos conveniently, and a 3x digital zoom function. The device has seven levels of infrared adjustability, allowing it to adapt to different levels of darkness. Its housing is waterproof and dustproof, making it suitable for use in harsh weather conditions. It also comes with a detachable shoulder strap and a soft bag for easy carrying and protection.
We brought the night vision device and other necessary equipment, flew from Xi’an to Hanzhong, and then took a bus to Liping town. We found a farmhouse to stay in and the owner warmly welcomed us, introducing us to local delicacies and customs. We tried local specialties such as rice noodles, cold noodles, lamb soup with bread, and drank rice wine and corn wine. The owner also told us to follow local regulations and customs when hunting in Liping. We couldn’t hunt rare or protected animals, nor could we enter prohibited hunting areas. He also recommended several suitable hunting areas and reminded us to be careful.
The next morning, we took a car to the entrance of the Liping National Forest Park with the owner’s guidance, bought tickets, and entered the park. There were sightseeing cars, bicycles, or walking trails to explore the park. We first took a car to the Li Scenic Area, the core scenic area of the park, with primitive Bashan pine forests, the former site of the Liping reclamation bureau, local folk customs, and pastoral scenery. We got off the car and walked along the wooden walkway to the forest, feeling the fresh air and cool breeze. The forest had various trees, flowers, and insects, and birds chirping, making us feel relaxed. We took out our night vision device and tried to observe the animals around us during the day, finding that the effect was quite good, and we could see the figures and eyes of some small animals clearly. We also used the device to take some photos and videos, planning to share them with other friends later.
After spending about an hour in the Li Scenic Area, we took a car to the Shima Mountain Scenic Area. This is the highest point of the park, with majestic stone forests as the main landscape. The stone forest was formed by sedimentary rocks from the seabed millions of years ago, shaped by crustal movement and weathering erosion, forming various shapes such as columns, peaks, bridges, caves, and more, creating a magnificent natural picture. We climbed up to the viewing platform, overlooking the entire stone forest, marveling at nature’s craftsmanship. We also walked into the stone forest on the stone steps, admiring various strange-shaped rocks and imagining their history and stories.
After spending about an hour and a half in the Shima Mountain Scenic Area, we took a car to the Huangyang River Scenic Area. This is the most beautiful place in the park, with the Bodhi Cliff of Xiliuhe Canyon, the underwater stone city, the Red Dust Gorge, and the Gaokeng Waterfall as the main attractions. Xiliuhe is a tributary of the Han River, passing through the park, forming a more than 20-kilometer-long canyon. There are towering peaks and steep cliffs on both sides of the canyon, with clear river water and rushing waterfalls, creating a beautiful ink painting. We got off the car and walked along the riverbank, enjoying the scenery along the way. We first came to the Bodhi Cliff, a huge rock wall with a concave hole resembling a Bodhi tree leaf, which is said to be the imprint left by Buddha. We used the night vision device to observe the cave and found some bats living inside. We also used the device to take photos of the night view of the Bodhi Cliff, finding it emitting a mysterious and sacred atmosphere in the dark.
After leaving the Bodhi Cliff, we took a car to the Underwater Stone City. This is a stone forest formed by sedimentary rocks from the seabed, with fossils and shapes of various marine creatures, making people feel like they are in an underwater world. We got off the car and walked into the stone forest on the wooden walkway, discovering some fossils such as fish, shells, corals, and rocks shaped like starfish, turtles, seahorses, and more. We used the night vision device to observe these rocks, finding them emitting a blue light in the dark, making us feel mysterious. We also used the device to take photos of the night view of the Underwater Stone City, finding it more spectacular and strange in the dark.
After leaving the Underwater Stone City, we took a car to the Red Dust Gorge. This is a canyon formed by red cliffs, named for its bright color. There is a clear stream in the canyon, and the two sides are covered with various flowers and plants, forming beautiful scenery. We got off the car and walked along the stream, feeling the coolness and tranquility of the canyon. We used the night vision device to observe the animals and plants in the canyon, finding some small animals such as frogs, crickets, and fireflies, and some plants such as wildflowers, ferns, and mosses. We also used the device to take photos of the night view of the Red Dust Gorge, finding it more colorful and brilliant in the dark.
After leaving the Red Dust Gorge, we took a car to the Gaokeng Waterfall. This is a large waterfall formed by the Xiliuhe River, with a height of 60 meters and a width of 30 meters, making it very spectacular. We got off the car and approached the waterfall, feeling the splashing water and roaring sound. We used the night vision device to observe the waterfall, finding it emitting a silver-white light in the dark, making us feel shocked and awe-inspiring. We also used the device to take photos of the night view of the Gaokeng Waterfall, finding it more magnificent and beautiful in the dark.
After visiting the four major scenic spots in the park, we took a bus back to the entrance. It was already dusk and the sky was getting dark. We decided to find a suitable place in the mountains to go hunting. We brought our night vision goggles and other equipment and walked along a path into the forest. We used the night vision goggles to search for animals around us and found some small animals such as rabbits, pheasants, and wild ducks. After selecting a target, we quietly approached it and used firearms or bows and arrows to shoot it. We successfully hunted several rabbits, pheasants, and a wild duck. We used the night vision goggles to take pictures of our trophies and felt excited and satisfied. We observed the environment around us with the night vision goggles and did not find any signs of other dangerous animals or humans. We decided to start a fire in the forest, clean the animals we hunted, and grill them with simple seasonings. We sat by the fire, enjoying the delicious barbecue and drinking some rice wine and corn wine provided by the boss. We talked and shared our hunting experiences and feelings, as well as discussing local customs and natural scenery. We felt that this was a very unforgettable and interesting trip, as well as a very successful and enjoyable hunting trip.
The next morning, we packed our things and took a bus back to Liping Town. We said goodbye to the boss and thanked him for his hospitality and help. We also left some barbecue for him as a gift and a return. The boss happily accepted it and gave us some local specialties such as honey, walnuts, and Sichuan peppercorns. We accepted them gratefully and hugged the boss goodbye. Then we got on the bus and left Liping Town, heading to Hanzhong Airport. On the way, we reviewed the bits and pieces of this trip, lamenting that time passed too quickly, and there were many places we hadn’t been to and many things we hadn’t done. We decided to come back here again in the future to continue exploring this beautiful and magical land.
This is my experience and feelings of going hunting in Liping National Forest Park. I think this is a very worthwhile trip, not only allowing me to appreciate the wonders and beauty of nature, but also experiencing different cultures and customs, and testing an excellent night vision binoculars with practical use. I am very grateful to my friends Yehudi Edgeworth and Madge Dodd for coming here with me, and also to the wildguarder brand for providing me with this night vision binoculars. I hope my article can bring you some useful information and inspiration, and I also hope you can enjoy my article.