Adam's Peak - towering 7,360 feet above sea level near Colombo - is Ceylon's Holy mountain, sacred to Buddhists, Hindus, Moslems and Eastern Christians alike.
LS. Adam's Peak.
LS. Peak with crowd in valley.
MS. Stone gate.
LS. Pilgrims negotiating steep climb.
MS. Cripple among pilgrims.
CU. Man carrying child.
LS. Pilgrims resting while others continue journey.
CU. Resting pilgrim.
MS. Woman climbing.
CU. Baby on man's shoulder.
CU. Fat woman struggling.
LS. Pilgrims at peak.
MS. Pilgrims ringing bell.
LS. People praying.
CU. People praying.
MS. Pilgrims praying at Buddha's footprint.
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Background: Adam's Peak - towering 7,360 feet above sea level near Colombo - is Ceylon's Holy mountain, sacred to Buddhists, Hindus, Moslems and Eastern Christians alike. Annually - on April 6 - thousands of pilgrims, young and old, climb the steep steps and hazardous railings to the cold wind - swept summit and pay homage to what is believed to be the foot print of Lord Buddha.
The footprint cannot be seen now, it is covered by a huge stone on which worshippers rest their forehead while praying. Poor cripples make the journey with the aid of crutches while the rich, accustomed to shoes and socks, climb bare-foot. At the summit, they burn incense and pray at the small shrine. The huge temple bells are rung as people of all religions chant prayers.
Surrounded by thick lush jungle, the peak is lashed by heavy tropical downpour many months of the year, and then the place is completely out of bounds to men. Elephants, leopards and huge black monkeys roam fearlessly in the surrounding jungle, but during the pilgrimage season they apparently keep clear.
Historians say this peak has been Holy to the Sinhalese since at least the fifth century A.D. How Lord Buddha's footprint got there nobody seems certain; but then that is one of the mystifying legends that adds enchantment to this Holy place.