Jaiozuo is a fairly big industrial city on the northern edge of Henan, sitting below the Taihangshan Mountains that follow the Huanghe (Yellow River) on the Henan/Shanxi border, then curve creating the Shanxi/Hebei border, before turning east to form the hills that you can see from Beijing!
North of Jaiozuo you can drive across one of a number of mountain passes into Shanxi, through the shattered, Industrial Revolution landscapes of village and household coalmines and steelmills. As you get up higher the villages focus on tending to the passing trucks - repairs, tyres, fuel, eating, sleeping, entertainment. Get off the road and you come to hilltop villages farming little terraces of maize and potatoes, with additional orchard crops of apples and pears.
There are beautiful gorges, ravines and lakes in the mountains, as yet untouched by the developers hand.