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
27th December, 2008



At the top of the road before going down to Pinglin past all the Buddhist statues that offer protection along the dangerous, winding road

It’s been a slow biking autumn, so now we find ourselves scrambling to break through 2,000km for the year, basically because that was a minimum goal. We therefore decided to do the Pinglin loop yesterday. With some hesitation, I might add, after not having been able to make it up the Balaka road a couple of weeks back. Winter is here, so the skies were gray and the mercury had dropped to a cool 15 degrees. The Central Weather Bureau said there was a ten percent risk of rain. It didn’t rain, but going up the 106A past Huafan University the mist was so thick the last couple of kilometers that the water literally hung in the air.

They don’t seem to be able to protect even themselves

At the top, we played with the thought of turning back the same way we came because D had a client at 2:30. We had only made it out by 8am so we weren’t sure that we’d make it in time. But it was only 10am, which meant that we’d done 27km in two hours, so we decided to roll down to Pinglin and have a cup of coffee at Vanilla Sky before hitting the 12km-long slope up to Xiaogetou. It’s less challenging than any of the other ascents on the Pinglin loop. The worst is going up 106A from Pinglin toward Huafan University, which may be short but is really steep and requires numerous stops along the way. The second worst are 47 and 47A from Shenkeng up to Xiaogetou, and third is the 106A up past Huafan toward Pinglin

Arriving at Xiaogetou from Pinling back toward Taipei

On the way from Pinglin to Xiaogetou we met the deputy editor in chief at Taipei Times headed for Pinglin before doing the 106A from there to Huafan Uni. He called me later, and said he had walked several stretches along that road. Anyway, we did make it back in time for D’s appointment, after having spent 5.5hr on the road, 76km. Of that, about 3hrs 50min were spent on the bikes. We may do this again on Sunday with the rest of the gang, unless they want to go to Pingxi instead. I want a full day of bikeriding soon, so we can go down to the east coast for a seafood lunch before turning back home again. Or maybe staying the night at a hot spring hotel in Jiaoxi and then return home the next day. We’ll see.

Facts Google map of the ride and an earlier post with more details and a link to the Google map.

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