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榛山 (Zhen shan)

posted by Martin Rubli at 13:29

Just in time before the rainy season hit Taiwan we joined my sister-in-law's company's hiking club (the sister-in-law remarkably absent ;-) on a trip to 榛山 (Zhen shan) near 觀霧 (Guan wu).

While the hike itself was relatively short, the drive there takes almost three hours one way. That's the thing with starting at sea level and having to climb 2000 m first. Luckily after getting up before six it isn't hard to get a bit of sleep in the bus, so the way up didn't feel that long after all.

Weather-wise – and given the circumstances at work in other ways as well – it was the nicest day of the entire week, perfect to once again experience the beautiful scenery.



The entrance to the 觀霧榛山森林浴步道 (Guan wu zhen shan forest trail).

The entrance to the 觀霧榛山森林浴步道 (Guan wu zhen shan forest trail).

The semi-informative trail map at the entrance. (Click [local:/gallery/data/zhen-shan/images/original/20130323-095515_MR4413_D90.jpg here] for a larger version.)

The semi-informative trail map at the entrance. (Click here for a larger version.)

A picnic shelter right at the beginning of the trail for those who get tired easily. Then again ...

A picnic shelter right at the beginning of the trail for those who get tired easily. Then again ...

... the view is nice enough to warrant a little break.

... the view is nice enough to warrant a little break.

The trail before it starts getting steep.

The trail before it starts getting steep.

The stairs up to the top.

The stairs up to the top.

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View from the platform towards 樂山 (Le shan, the one with the radar station on top). On the left-hand side the two peaks are 北坑山 (Bei keng shan, closer) and 東洗水山 (Dong xi shui shan, further away).

View from the platform towards 樂山 (Le shan, the one with the radar station on top). On the left-hand side the two peaks are 北坑山 (Bei keng shan, closer) and 東洗水山 (Dong xi shui shan, further away).

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The view from the platform towards the 雪山山脈 (Xue shan mountain range).

The view from the platform towards the 雪山山脈 (Xue shan mountain range).

A close-up of the same view with the most prominent mountains labeled. (No guarantees though, it's really hard to label mountains you haven't been to. In the process I've even seen some tourist panorama panels whose labels seem way off.)

On the left is the area I've been to [local:/blog/2012/05/31/a-frog-goes-hiking-da-ba-jian-shan-day-1/ last year in my attempt to climb 大霸尖山 (Da ba jian shan)].

A close-up of the same view with the most prominent mountains labeled. (No guarantees though, it's really hard to label mountains you haven't been to. In the process I've even seen some tourist panorama panels whose labels seem way off.)

On the left is the area I've been to last year in my attempt to climb 大霸尖山 (Da ba jian shan).

Funny clouds on top of 樂山 (Le shan).

Funny clouds on top of 樂山 (Le shan).

If you walk past the entrance to the trail you can see 榛山 (Zhen shan). What you can't see, however, is that the peak on top of which the view platform sits is not actually the top of 榛山 (Zhen shan). To reach the real top you have to follow an unmarked trail (that I missed), which eventually gets you to the 三角點 (triangulation point) that has no view.

If you walk past the entrance to the trail you can see 榛山 (Zhen shan). What you can't see, however, is that the peak on top of which the view platform sits is not actually the top of 榛山 (Zhen shan). To reach the real top you have to follow an unmarked trail (that I missed), which eventually gets you to the 三角點 (triangulation point) that has no view.

Along the 大鹿林道西線 (West section of the Da Lu forest road) there's the world's smallest "botanical garden". It's actually labeled as 親子植物園 on the map, but this lonely (albeit beautiful) tree seems to be it.

Along the 大鹿林道西線 (West section of the Da Lu forest road) there's the world's smallest "botanical garden". It's actually labeled as 親子植物園 on the map, but this lonely (albeit beautiful) tree seems to be it.

The view from the foot bridge that crosses 馬達拉溪 (Ma da la river). At the same time this is the end of the wide part of the 大鹿林道西線 (West section of the Da Lu forest road). After that it's merely an overgrown hiking trail.

The view from the foot bridge that crosses 馬達拉溪 (Ma da la river). At the same time this is the end of the wide part of the 大鹿林道西線 (West section of the Da Lu forest road). After that it's merely an overgrown hiking trail.

On the way back to the 觀霧山莊 (Guan wu mountain hut) the view is still quite nice.

On the way back to the 觀霧山莊 (Guan wu mountain hut) the view is still quite nice.

The view from the parking lot at 觀霧山莊 (Guan wu mountain hut).

The view from the parking lot at 觀霧山莊 (Guan wu mountain hut).

The 雪霸休閒農場 (Guan wu recreational farm) is really a place to visit ''before'' you go to 觀霧 (Guan wu). While the view is good it just can't quite compete ...

The 雪霸休閒農場 (Guan wu recreational farm) is really a place to visit before you go to 觀霧 (Guan wu). While the view is good it just can't quite compete ...

... and neither can their English translations. With unrecycling clearly being the opposite of recycling this must be a tiny factory.

... and neither can their English translations. With unrecycling clearly being the opposite of recycling this must be a tiny factory.

I'm neither good at shooting flowers nor did I have suitable equipment, but you get an impression of the beautiful flowers they have in their glasshouse.

I'm neither good at shooting flowers nor did I have suitable equipment, but you get an impression of the beautiful flowers they have in their glasshouse.

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A super-detailed ("sign", "starting point of a stone steps", "starting point of steep ascent", ...) map of the area. This one actually lists the hidden trail to the top of 榛山 (Zhen shan). (Click [local:/gallery/data/zhen-shan/images/original/20130323-153951_MR4524_D90.jpg here] for a larger version.)

A super-detailed ("sign", "starting point of a stone steps", "starting point of steep ascent", ...) map of the area. This one actually lists the hidden trail to the top of 榛山 (Zhen shan). (Click here for a larger version.)

On the way down we were lucky enough to see a beautiful sea of clouds make its way into the valley.

On the way down we were lucky enough to see a beautiful sea of clouds make its way into the valley.

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