23
Jan

2013

The “Sky Road” Ropeway in China’s Yushan Village

Post by Gondola Project

We’ve seen our fair share of primitive, simple ropeways around the world, especially in China (link 1, link 2) where cable is often used to connect remote, mountainous villages.

And today, we can add another one to this exclusive list — the Yushan Village “Sky Road” Ropeway in Hubei Province.

In the past, the 200 villagers who use this system had to trek several days before reaching the nearest town but today, can simply glide across the 400m deep gorge in mere minutes. Take a look — and try not to look down.

The Sky Road Ropeway stretches 3200 ft long (~1km) across a gorge. Image from dailymail.co.uk.

While this system looks like something that was built in medieval times, in reality, the Sky Road is only 16 years old.

What’s even more incredible is that Zhang Xinjian is the ropeway’s only remaining operator and is responsible for all aspects of maintenance, including the weekly lubrication of the cables and daily upkeep of the diesel engine.

Zhang Xinjian hard at work. Image from dailymail.co.uk.

Passengers using ropeway to transport goods and materials. Image from dailymail.co.uk

 

The work by Zhang is undoubtedly commendable but as we’ve discussed in the past, there is probably need for much more involvement from the cable industry so to ensure that these systems continue to operate safely and to avoid any unnecessary accidents.



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Comments

  1. Nice posting Nick. You said that they can "simply glide across the 400m deep gorge." More like "white knuckling" it isn't it? At least that's what I'd think. It's a gorgeous canyon and all, but it's an amazingly long fall! Hats off to Zhang Xinjian, the operator/maintenance guy/etc! Amazing