Although the Chinese are not famous for their roads, they were in fact great road builders, uniting their empire over two thousand years ago with a 25,000-mile network of flagstone highways. Today most of the old roads have been replaced by modern ones, but in the steepest mountains of western China, the graded highways were unable to surmount the highest peaks head-on as the old roads had done, and instead took a more circuitous route. In the process long stretches of the original flagstone were thus inadvertantly preserved. This guide contains detailed instructions for nineteen hikes along the Road to Shu with lodging, restaurant, and transportation information for all destinations along the route. Each hike is summarized briefly in the main text (as in the four exerpts that follow) and then in detail in the back of the book to enable you to do the hike on your own. You can buy a CD of GPS waypoints of all hikes to help you as well. For the two-and three-day hikes, however, it is hightly recommended that you use one of the listed six non-professional (and non-English speaking) guides listed in the guidebook. Most of them only cost $5 a day and seven pages of Chinese/English phrases, many specifically geared to hiking, will help you communicate. The maps are all in Chinese and English, as well, to facilitate asking directions.