It's our first Chinese package tour, though only the guides are local - the rest of us are German, Polish-Swiss, French-Canadian, Italian and a Finn, including - by coincidence - our German friend Ruth and her two children (much to the delight of our two).
We then drove further into the mountains to see a valley full of petroglyphs (rock carvings) dating back to around 500BC. It was an easy stroll up an arid rock-strewn valley, past some great Chinglish signs like "Do Not Terrify the Craven Bharal*", and there they were: some barely discernible, others suspiciously pristine after 2,500 years of being open to the elements. The museum at the entrance was disappointing in the extreme, though the view across the mountains as sunset approached was gorgeously dreamy.
* Bharal are mountain goats