Alishan, April 12 - 13, 2010. Click pic for album

Taroko to Kending

Taroko Gorge to Kending, Feb 14 - 19, 2010.

Northern Cross Island Highway

Northern Cross Island Highway, May 19 - 21, 2008. Click pic for album
29th October, 2007

A trip to Shiding

A view from Helen's in Shiding.jpg

The view from Helen’s coffeeshop in Shiding

We left at seven this morning forLiuzhangli MRT station where X was waiting. H had a cold and couldn’t make it. Continuing down to Muzha, we picked up T who wants to come with us on a three day-tour across the island next Tuesday, so X told him he’d better come with us a few times so he knows what he’s getting into. No experience and the wrong kind of borrowed bike meant that he kept lagging behind.
We continued for another 10km through Shenkeng past the famous doufu-restaurant that I first tried out together with Great Wall and some other friends 10 years ago before it started to go uphill for 10km without the slighest downslope. Good thing I bought a new bicycle yesterday. What a winner! Eat my dust!
Super good weather. Clear skies, 25 degrees, no wind, birds singing, cicadas chirping and the sound of a mountain stream, mixed up with the sound of the odd car and a few big motorbikes. A great early morning in a beautiful area that brings a lot of both bicycle and motorbike enthusiasts.
A cup of coffee at Helen's in Shiding

The reward after 10km going uphill: a cup of coffee at Helen’s coffeeshop on the mountainside overlooking distant green mountains under clear skies with the odd cottonwad floating past. Good coffee if you double the espresso in the cappuccino.

At the top of the mountain in Shiding we had a cup of coffee at Helen’s coffeeshop (海倫咖啡). If we’d had the time, we’d have rolled down the other side to get to Pinglin for a cup of tea there. We’ll do that at the end of our three day-tour when we will be returning through Pinglin. We also passed the road to Pingxi,which we’ll save for another day. There’s a beatiful road running along a ravine from Pingxi to Ruifang, which we saw taking the narrow gage train from Ruifang to Pingxi. The way home was also nice, since it began with a 10km downslope. Rolling, rolling, rolling. After a total of 55km, we finished the ride with some pasta in a small Italian place somewhere in northern Muzha together with H who joined up after having got some medication so she’ll be fit for next Tuesday. Home again, we had accumulated a total of 59km. OK for a morning ride.
My bike

My new Giant FCR. NTD20,000, 9kg, 27-speed. Easy pedaling uphill, and some real pressure on level ground or going downhill. Added a pack holder to hang the bags on for longer trips. A great bike, and the spokes look really cool.
Facts Follow the standard biking road from Taipei toward Shenkeng, ie, Heping E Rd to the end, where it changes names to Jungong Rd (軍功路) until it hits Rd 106, which begins as Muzha Rd (木柵路) and then changes names to Beishen Rd (北深路). Follow that road until the road splits toward Pingxi, road 106 to the left, and road 106A (106乙) to the right, at a 7-Eleven. Follow 106A to the right for a couple of km until the road splits again at a Hilite convenience store. Take a right across the bridge and after another 2km take a right where the road splits toward Sifenzi (四分子) (follow road 47). After another 7km uphill, there’s a T-intersection when road 47 hits road 106. Take a left and you’ll hit Helen’s coffeeshop after another km or so. Continue along 106 and you get to Pinglin.

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