Clouds Scurrying over Jade Emperor Hill | 玉皇飞云 | yù huánɡ fēi yún
Address: YuHuang Hill | 玉皇山 | yù huánɡ shān
Jade Emperor Hill stands between the West Lake and Qiantang River with an elevation of 239 meters. In Tang Dynasty, it was called as “Jade Pillar Hill” and changed to “Yuewang Hill” in Five Dynasties. The present name was given in Ming Dynasty when a Taoist temple called Lucky Star was built on the hill and a shrine of Jade Emperor put in it. It was known as one of the three Taoist temples at West Lake in the late Qing Dynasty. Standing on the top of the hill, you can enjoy a very nice view of the hill-bordering West Lake and the sail – studded Qiantang River. Currently, a pavilion called “Ascend-the-Cloud ” was built on the top. Climbing up the pavilion, you will see the clouds scurrying past your feet. Therefore this scene is called as “Clouds Scurrying over Jade Emperor Hill”.
Early in Liang Dynasty of South Dynasty, there were Buddhism temples built in Jade Emperor Hill, and the hill was fully developed in the time of Wuyue State in Five Dynasties. Later, in the second year (AD 924) of Emperor Tongguang’s reign in Later Tang Dynasty, the mountain path of Ciyun Ridge was opened at the southern foot of the hill, and Buddhism temples like “Dengyun Platform” and A Yu King Temple used for offering sacrifices to the heaven were built. To the South Song Dynasty, the temples were even expanded. In Ming Dynasty, the temples of Jade Emperor Hill were changed into official Taoist temple. The Fuxing Temple at the top of the hill and Ciyun Palace was extremely flourishing in Qing Dynasty.
The top of the hill can be reached by a more-than-4-kilometers long road which winds its way 2.5 times around the hill, or by a 2600-steps footpath. The major attractions on the hill include Purple Source Cave, Eight Trigrams Field and Seven-Star Pavilion. Purple Source Cave, one of the “seven ancient caves of West Lake”, locates on the half-way up the hill and has another deed cave containing three different size ones. In front of the cave, there is a nice garden with rockery. Looking down from the garden, you can see the Eight Trigrams Field. This field situates at the southern foot of Jade Emperor Hill and it is said to have been tended by a emperor himself during the Southern Song Dynasty. Above the Purple Source Cave, there is Seven – Star Pavilion. Originally, seven iron vats which were arranged in the form of the Big Dipper stood beside the pavilion. It was believed this kind of arrangement can control the Fire Dragon or fires in Hangzhou.