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A frog goes hiking: 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan)

posted by Martin Rubli at 07:48

羊頭山 (Yang tou shan), literally translated "Goat head mountain" is located a few kilometers off 台8 (Highway 8), which links 合歡山 (He huan shan) with 花蓮 (Hua lian). With a trail length of only 7-8 kilometers (depending on whether you trust the milestones or your GPS) it can easily be done in a single day.

We left around 0635 from the 滑雪山莊 (Hua xue mountain lodge) where we had spent the night and drove for almost an hour East to the trailhead. The hike itself took a bit over seven hours, including breaks, which meant we were back at the trailhead by 1505.

The weather was dry and mostly sunny, which made for a nice training hike for our upcoming hike of 桃山 (Tao shan). Ironically, the training hike turned out to be slightly more strenuous than the one we were training for, but that's a story for another blog post.


Overview

The yellow track is the drive from the mountain lodge to the trailhead. The green track is the hike.


(Click the image for a larger version.)


(Click the image for a larger version.)


Elevation charts

羊頭山登山口 (Yang tou shan trail head) to 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan) and back



GPS tracks


The road up from 滑雪山莊 (Hua xue mountain lodge) where we started our day.

The road up from 滑雪山莊 (Hua xue mountain lodge) where we started our day.

Can you spot the trailhead? It's right next to the entrance of the tunnel ...

Can you spot the trailhead? It's right next to the entrance of the tunnel ...

... where you have to climb the roadside fence to actually start hiking. By the way, here is where I lifted my legs high enough to see my shoes and noticed I was still wearing my sandals.

... where you have to climb the roadside fence to actually start hiking. By the way, here is where I lifted my legs high enough to see my shoes and noticed I was still wearing my sandals.

The view back towards the road.

The view back towards the road.

The sign at the trailhead says 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan) is the lowest of the 百岳 (Taiwan's 100 Highest Peaks) with its 3035 meters elevation but, depending on the age of the list you consult, the ranking looks a little different. On [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/100_Peaks_of_Taiwan Wikipedia] it ranks 96th.

The sign at the trailhead says 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan) is the lowest of the 百岳 (Taiwan's 100 Highest Peaks) with its 3035 meters elevation but, depending on the age of the list you consult, the ranking looks a little different. On Wikipedia it ranks 96th.

The trail leads you past beautiful trees ...

The trail leads you past beautiful trees ...

... several metal stairs ...

... several metal stairs ...

... and a few flat areas that allow your legs to take a break.

... and a few flat areas that allow your legs to take a break.

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Thanks to our good weather we saw quite far towards 花蓮 (Hua lian), which was covered by a sea of clouds.

Thanks to our good weather we saw quite far towards 花蓮 (Hua lian), which was covered by a sea of clouds.

In the right third of this photo you spot can a pointy peak, which is 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak), as well as the forest-covered 屏風山 (Ping feng shan).

In the right third of this photo you spot can a pointy peak, which is 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak), as well as the forest-covered 屏風山 (Ping feng shan).

The last section of the trail is very nice to walk. If you look back you see the beautiful view ...

The last section of the trail is very nice to walk. If you look back you see the beautiful view ...

... and if you look left and right you see 杜鵑花 (Rhododendron).

... and if you look left and right you see 杜鵑花 (Rhododendron).

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Close to the ridge line is the crossroad towards 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan), today's destination, and 畢祿山 (Bi lu shan), which with its 3371 meters elevation, didn't fit into today's schedule (or mindset).

Close to the ridge line is the crossroad towards 羊頭山 (Yang tou shan), today's destination, and 畢祿山 (Bi lu shan), which with its 3371 meters elevation, didn't fit into today's schedule (or mindset).

Here you can see 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak) again, just left of the tree, as well as the grassy hill on its right, which is where 滑雪山莊 (Hua xue mountain lodge) lies.

Here you can see 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak) again, just left of the tree, as well as the grassy hill on its right, which is where 滑雪山莊 (Hua xue mountain lodge) lies.

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Once again the beautiful view back towards 花蓮 (Hua lian).

Once again the beautiful view back towards 花蓮 (Hua lian).

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On the left is 無明山 (Wu ming shan) and the pointy one in the back is 中央尖山 (Zhong yang jian shan).

On the left is 無明山 (Wu ming shan) and the pointy one in the back is 中央尖山 (Zhong yang jian shan).

The round peak on the right is 畢祿山 (Bi lu shan). Further in the background you can see – from right to left – 合歡山北峰 (He huan shan north peak), the wide grassy one, 合歡山主峰 (He huan shan main peak), the one with the cloud above it, and 合歡山東峰 (He huan shan east peak), the grassy one left of the cloud. The rocky one on the far left is, once again, 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak).

The round peak on the right is 畢祿山 (Bi lu shan). Further in the background you can see – from right to left – 合歡山北峰 (He huan shan north peak), the wide grassy one, 合歡山主峰 (He huan shan main peak), the one with the cloud above it, and 合歡山東峰 (He huan shan east peak), the grassy one left of the cloud. The rocky one on the far left is, once again, 奇萊北峰 (Qi lai north peak).

The triangulation point at the top of 羊頭山, 3035 meters above sea level. In the background you can see 中央尖山 (Zhong yang jian shan), the impressive pointy one, and 無明山 (Wu ming shan), covered by a branch.

The triangulation point at the top of 羊頭山, 3035 meters above sea level. In the background you can see 中央尖山 (Zhong yang jian shan), the impressive pointy one, and 無明山 (Wu ming shan), covered by a branch.

The view from the top towards South East.

The view from the top towards South East.

And finally the mandatory group photo, as always with my flags. :-)

And finally the mandatory group photo, as always with my flags. :-)