Hikes, this weekend (October 30th/31st)

In New Taipei City, Waterfalls by Richard0 Comments

LATEST UPDATE (October 25th): Well, the weather turned out fine last weekend after all the flooding (although the trails would have been a bit muddy). Sadly I was inside all weekend, as expecting heavy rain, I agreed to join in David’s mother’s eightieth birthday celebrations (as I should have anyway: it’s an extremely important event anywhere, but especially in Taiwan). A great weekend, but I couldn’t stop looking yearningly out the window and imagining myself on a trail in the hills somewhere, preferably heading towards a tall waterfall….

   Well, another typhoon is in the area (although well east of here and not expected to directly affect Taiwan), and the forecast is for rain again later this week, but at the moment it’s due to clear up in time for the weekend, so the two hikes postponed twice already are ON for next weekend. Let’s hope we finally get out and do some HIKING again! It’s been too long!

I’ll confirm that we’re going later in the week (and where: if the weather is looking really good, we’ll be heading for Mt Banping or Shitikeng Old Trail instead (both blogged somewhere below, but in need of route direction checking, as both will be in the new book). If you’re interested in getting out on a moderate to fairly strenuous hike this weekend, let me know!

UPDATE: With a super typhoon threatening to spin up this way in the next few days, it’s looking as though  it’ll probably be a wild-weather, hike-less weekend. The situation should be clearer in a day or two, and it might yet turn south, but for the moment these hikes are postponed to October 30-31!

Yesterday’s (Sunday’s) hike, originally to the Stone Bamboo Shoot has been postponed once more (!) this time at the last minute when, after enjoying dry weather all the way from Taipei, we rounded the top of the hill above Jingtung and found the upper Keelung River valley bathed in rain. Nothing torrential, or even heavy, but enough to put a damper on the proceedings. Instead we did a quick run up Filial Son Mountain, and enjoyed Shifen Waterfall in full flood (photo above) !

Golden Letters Tablet, near Jiufen

   The next two weekends I should be hiking in the high mountains, but this weekend’s trip (to the little-known Mt Shuan) has been cancelled for lack of hikers, and the following week’s four-day Mt Nanhuda seems also not to be going ahead…. So my count of conquered 3,000 meter peaks will remain embarrassingly low, and we get four extra days (weather permitting, of course) to hike around Taipei instead!

     The weather for this next weekend is still uncertain, but the present plan is to try once again for the Stone Bamboo Shoot on Saturday, and on Sunday the Golden Letters Tablet hike (I put in a few photos to whet your appetite). PLEASE NOTE, however that if the weather forecast improves, we’ll change the hike on one day (or even both days) to hikes on the Northeast Coast. The chance for good weather there is fast disappearing as winter approaches and the Northeast Monsoon season approaches, and any chance we can get, we need to head for the coast!

Trail at the Golden Letters Tablet, near Jiufen

So, basically I’ve no more than  a general idea where we’ll end up hiking this weekend, but hope to have firmer plans later in the week. Hope a few of you can join me on each day!!

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