Driving the winding hairpinned 24-Zig Road in China
Located near Qinglong town in Guizhou Province, 24-Zig Road is the name of a curvy mountain road, with 24 hairpin turns. It’s one of the famous hairpinned roads in the world. The road was built by the Chinese during WWII to transport supplies to help resist the Japanese invasion.
When was the 24-Zig Road in China built?
Located in the southwest of the Guizhou province, the road is totally unpaved. It’s also known as 24-zig and 24 Zigzags, and witnessed more than 2000 trucks fully loaded with military supplies passed by daily in World War II. The winding mountain road was finished in 1935. At present the road is no longer in active use but is still used as a shortcut by motorbikes and three-wheelers. It was so notorious that during the war, drivers often prayed for their safety before they embarked on it. In 2006 this stretch of road became a national monument.
How long is 24-Zig Road in China?
This short mountain road is 4km (2.48 miles) long. It was built in the shape of “S” on a 60 degrees slope, and named after the 24 bends ascending from the valley bottom to the Qinglong town. It’s 5 meters wide. Contrary to popular belief this stretch is not part of the Burma Road, Ledo Road or Stilwell Road but part of the road that connected Kunming (the end of the Burma Road) to Chongqing (the capital of China during WW-II). The road climbs 264 metres from 1.296 meters at bend one to 1.560 metres at bend twenty-four (866 feet climb from 4,252 feet at bend one to 5,118 feet at bend twenty-four). The average gradient is around 8% and the distance between bend one and bend twenty-four is about 3.5 Km (2.2 Mile). Opposite the road, on a mountain, there is a platform for sightseeing. History tells us that the road was so dangerous that many trucks overturned on it.