Posts Tagged With: trail

The Four Beast Mountains – Yongchun

My series of blog posts on hiking The Four Beast Mountains has become one of my most popular series since I’ve started blogging.  Now that spring is back upon us, I’ve noticed that those posts are getting more and more hits.  I can only guess that everyone is looking to get get some exercise!

So here’s a new post.  It’s going to be mostly just pictures, but they are all from an area that I glossed over in the last three posts.

The general Yongchun area consists of two high schools, a small military base, several temples, and a few apartment building neighborhoods.  The entire basin of this area (roughly 600m x 100m) was a shallow lake just a hundred years ago or so.

Promise King

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Categories: Hiking, Must See Taiwan, TAIWAN, The Four Beast Mountains | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hiking Xiaozi Shan in Pingxi (孝子山平溪)

I went on another weekend hike with Stu recently, this one to Xiaozi Shan (孝子山) and its nearby mountains located just to the south of Pingxi (平溪), Taiwan.  We had a good time as usual, enjoying the first rain-free Sunday that Taipei has seen in months.

XiaoZi Shan and it neighboring mountains, Cimushan (慈母山) and Cimufeng (慈母) are all just a few minute’s hike from the 106 highway and downtown Pingxi.  They all feature sheer-rock faced peaks with awesome views of the surrounding mountains and the Pingxi valley. What’s unbelievable about this area, is that all of the peaks are accessed by a trail “intersection” that has 4 different trail heads withing 40 meters of each other, and the peaks are all within a 30 minute hike from there!

Stu and I spent a few hours hiking up and down all the different peaks, then wandered home on a back trail and still got home for a late lunch, which has to make this area THE most accessible and best bang-for-you-buck hikes in all of Taiwan…

Hiking near Pingxi, Taiwan

A couple of men descend from the peak of Xiaozi Shan (孝子山) on a aluminum ladder in Pingxi (平溪), Taiwan.

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Categories: Hiking, PHOTOGRAPHY, TAIWAN | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Hiking Taiwan – Jialou Hu 加羅湖

JiaLou Hu 加羅湖 is a mountain lake tucked high in one of Taiwan’s beautiful clouded forests.  If you can get to the trail head, it’s a moderate three hour hike to the lake.  On the way, you pass through some spectacular forests scattered with luscious green ferns, mossy vines, and a few 1,000 year old trees.

Three friends and I went there during the four day “Dragon Boat” holiday in late May.  We did it in two days, but there is plenty more to explore in the area, and most of the people we met there were staying for the whole weekend.

I took this opportunity to give my first shot at a multi-media presentation.  I would really, really like to get some critiques and feedback on what you think of it, so please feel free to comment below.

The multi-media presentation is above, but there are some still photographs and more information after the jump…

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Categories: Hiking, Motorcycling, PHOTOGRAPHY, TAIWAN, Video | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Hiking the Four Beasts Mountains (四獸山) – Elephant Mountain (象山)

Elephant Mountain (象山) is the most famous of the “Four Beasts Mountains (四獸山)” of Taipei, Taiwan and the most easily accessible.  It’s the third and last article in my series about hiking the Four Beasts MountainsPart one is on 9-5 Peak (Jiuwufeng – 九五峯), and part two is on Tiger Mountain (虎山).

Elephant Mountain is the most popular of the mountains for a good reason.  Being the closest to the city not only means easy access, but it means stunning views of Taipei, especially Taipei 101.

Taipei City and Taipei 101 as seen from Elephant Mountain

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Categories: Hiking, Must See Taiwan, PHOTOGRAPHY, TAIWAN, The Four Beast Mountains, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 57 Comments

Hiking the Four Beasts Mountains (四獸山) – Tiger Mountain (虎山)

Tiger Mountain(虎山) is the second subject of three in this series of articles on hiking Taipei, Taiwan’s Four Beasts Mountains (四獸山).

Tiger Mountain is the most northern of the Four Beasts Mountains and the easiest to get to.  It’s not the easiest to find (that would be Elephant Mountain) but if you have transportation, it’s an easy walk along a well kept, level trail.

All along the trail are stunning views of Taipei 101, Taipei City, and Nangang.

Taiwans Tower of Babel   Viewed from Tiger Mountain.

"Taiwan's Tower of Babel" Viewed from Tiger Mountain.

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Categories: Hiking, Must See Taiwan, PHOTOGRAPHY, TAIWAN, The Four Beast Mountains, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Hiking the Four Beasts Mountains (四獸山) – 9-5 Peak (九五峯)

One of my all time favorite hikes/photography locations in Taiwan is The Four Beast Mountains (四獸山) area.  Located within Taipei City limits, these trails are an easy escape from busy city life and have amazing panoramic views of Taipei City and Taipei 101.

The trail system includes Tiger (虎山), Elephant (象山), Leopard (豹山) and Lion (獅山) Mountains and is very easily reached from the Taipei MRT system.  In fact, the base of Taipei 101 is only a 15 minute walk from the Elephant Mountain trail head.

If that’s not enough, many of the trails are lighted, 24 hours a day!

The view of Taipei from 9-5 Peak is unrivaled.

The view of Taipei from 9-5 Peak is unrivaled.

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Categories: Hiking, Must See Taiwan, PHOTOGRAPHY, TAIWAN, The Four Beast Mountains, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Huangdidian 皇帝殿

Hiking Huang Di Dian 皇帝殿 this past weekend was one of the best day trips I’ve been on in Taiwan.  Just about 20 minutes from Taipei, this hike is one that shouldn’t be missed.

A perfect 360 view awaited us at the end.

A perfect 360 view awaited us at the end.

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Categories: Hiking, TAIWAN, Taiwan Adventurers, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Fengtoujian 峰頭尖

Hiking in Taiwan just might be the best thing that you can do here.  Fresh air, beautiful views, and a bit of exercise can really help you to forget the traffic, noise and pollution of the cities. I find it really sad that a lot of the people who live here never leave the cities.  I’ve met foreigners who have lived here for years and have literally never left the city once.  Personally, I go crazy if I can’t get out of Taipei at least every other weekend.  Sometimes, I head to the mountains, sometimes the beach, sometimes the hot springs.

Last weekend, my friends and I decided that a little hiking was in order.  Stu Dawson is completely insane about hiking and has started a website called Hiking Taiwan.  He knows his stuff, so if he has a hike planned, I’ll usually try to tag along.

Last weekend we headed out to a small town called Pingxi 坪溪, just 30 minutes from Taipei.  Surrounding Pingxi 坪溪 are some beautiful, jagged mountains that are perfect for a days get away.

We chose one called Feng Tou Jian 峰頭尖 that sits on a complex system of trails that crisscross Taiwan.

I’ll keep the story short because Stu did a great job of writing about it on his website.  So if you want the details and practicalities of going to this particular trail, go to his site.  I just thought I’d share my pictures from the hike to hopefully motivate some of you to get out there and start enjoying yourself!

In the beginning, we could see two of the peaks we would cross.

In the beginning, we could see two of the peaks we would cross.

More hiking in Taiwan after the jump…

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Categories: Hiking, TAIWAN, Taiwan Adventurers, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Random Pictures from Taiwan #1

Taiwan really has some great photography possibilities just sitting around, waiting to be shot.

I recently bought a new, smaller DSLR and have been happily carrying it around with me a lot more often then my old, heavy one.

Because of that, I have quite a few new blog ideas lined up in my head, but I’m currently working on a couple of actual paying projects and just don’t have the time to write them.

So I’ll submit a few random pictures that I’ve shot since buying that new camera.  Some of these will be in blogs in the future, and some are truly just random, walk around pictures.  I’ll let you guess which are which.

A girl walks up steps at the subway exit for Lungshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan.

A girl walks up steps at the subway exit for Lungshan Temple, Taipei, Taiwan.

More photography from Taiwan after the jump…

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Categories: PHOTOGRAPHY, Portraiture, TAIWAN | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Wuliaojian 五寮尖

I had big plans for the weekend.  The problem with planning anything on the weekends in Taipei is that the weather rarely cooperates.  This weekend was the opposite problem of what usually happens.  I was planning on a nice, lazy few days, with no other expectations except maybe get some stock pictures of the MRT (Taipei’s subway).  To my surprise, the weather on Saturday turned out to be one of the best days of the year…cool, low humidity, and even sunny!  Well, there goes my plans!!!  I’ve definitely learned that you can’t waste a nice weekend in Taipei…it’s not that it rains ALL the time, but it does rain an awful lot.

After an hour or so of convincing myself to get out of bed, I decided to get up.  So what to do?  A quick call to my friend Ross who had a friend in from Japan and it was on.  We decided we’d take a fairly easy 3.5 hour hike in the nearby mountains…

Wu Liao Jian (五寮尖) is a famous hike about 1 hour from Taipei.  It has a complex trail system that allows hikes from a few hours to all day.  The main attraction of this particular mountain is that it has a beautifully exposed rocky peak.  There’s also a nice river by the trail head for a cool-down swim session afterwords.

As always, doing something proved to be the right decision over doing nothing…damn.  Maybe next weekend it will rain!

Ross about to descend the very long rope ladder at Wu Liao Jian 五寮尖 mountain, near Taipei, Taiwan.

Ross about to descend the very long rope ladder at Wu Liao Jian 五寮尖 mountain, near Taipei, Taiwan.

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Categories: Hiking, TAIWAN, Taiwan Adventurers, TRAVEL | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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