Alishan

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 July, 2010

Shizaitoushan

Monday mornings are tough in the summer. To get away from most of the blazing sun, we get up at 5am. After brekkie and dog walking we usually get out at around 6.30, which means that we'll at least be done with all the climbing and on our way back home by 10am when the mercury normally hits 30 degrees Celsius. 100726-XDriverpark.jpg
Waiting for the gang
The same formula applied this Monday, and so we left the house by 6.30 to met up with Tim, Luke and A-bin at the entrance to the Xindian Riverside Park down behind the Water Park in Gongguan. There was risk of rain in the afternoon, so it had been decided that we should forgo a longer full day ride and instead do the very enjoyable Shizaitoushan ride down in Xindian, which neither Luke or A-bin had done before. 100726-Bitan.jpg
Breakfast for the late risers
I'd say it's a moderately hard ride, because even I can make it to the top at 655m without stopping once. After slowly climbing to 200m over the 13km or so from the Bitan suspension bridge to the foot of the mountain, half of it along the Xindian River, you climb another 450m over 8km to reach the peak at 655m. 100726-biking.jpg
D in style
The road from there and back down again is sometimes very steep, hitting fairly extended gradients of 20% and more, so that's why we're not too keen on doing this ride the other way round -- too much walking when you're out biking isn't much of a confidence booster. 100720-shizaitoushan.jpg
The view
Facts: While a 450m climb over 8km pans out to an average 5.5% gradient, that is a slightly deceptive number. The gradient frequently drops below 5% and the road is almost level in places, which also means that the gradient quite often reaches 10% and more. In particular, after about 6.5km, or 1.5km before the highest point, you'll run into a 14% slope, which could well force you off the bike if you've been pushing too hard. Here is the ride with all the GPS data on my Garmin page. The data can be exported either as a gpx or a kml file from this page.

And here's the Google map:

View in a larger map

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