On the second day we visited Chincun Reserve, and this experience was even better. Once again most people rode horses for the almost one-hour trek to the butterflies from the base area. This time, the horses were not led individually, so the horses did sometimes move out of line to pass each other. This was not a problem. The ride up took a little longer than the previous day because it was a steeper climb. Those who hiked the trail had a formidable task.
Soon after we left the base we started to see butterflies. There were small groups along the trail, and at times you rode through them. It was quite a special experience. Once we made it to the ‘top’ it was a short walk to the viewing area. However, this walk was on a path along the side of the mountain. We then sat comfortably with thousands of monarchs in front and above us. We could also see into the valley and watch as others fluttered by. This afforded us great views and perspectives for pictures. The butterflies covered many branches and tree trunks less than 20 feet in front of us. I could have sat there all day.
The ride down was great, with butterflies around us much of the way. At one point, an open ‘trail’ crossed our path and thousands of monarchs flew across our path. It turns out they were coming down from the higher elevation to get water down below. This once-in-a-lifetime experience was better than anticipated, quite worth the effort of the journey. In two days I gained a lifetime of memories.