Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Jiuwufeng - 九五峯

Taipei is both blessed and cursed. It is surrounded by mountains on all sides which means that the pollution in the city can be terrible, but it also means you are never far from a hiking trail. The ones around the four beasts are almost all of the paved variety and are lit up at night, which means they can be tackled anytime.

We decided to go up to Jiuwushan 九五峯 from the Zhongyi temple 忠義宮 which is near Hushan 虎山. To get there, head east along Xinyi road. Go through the tunnel and carry straight on. This is Fude Street 福德街. Follow the road until the is a sharp bend to the left and a 7-11 on the corner. From here don't continue to follow the road but instead go straight on and turn right and the first set of lights. The road then goes steeply up. Upon reaching a fork, turn left and stop at the temple.

The trail is well signposted and easy to follow despite all of the side trails along the way. It feels like you spend weeks exploring all the different paths up there.

The best thing about going up mountains like this one at night are the fantastic views you get of Taipei city all lit up. This night was clear and we could see the lights going up Yangmingshan in the distance.

After about an hour or so we reached the peak of Jiuwufeng with the red characters etched on the large boulder. It really needn't have taken this long to get there but we stopped to take a lot of photos on the way.

From the peak we followed a slightly different route down, coming back down to the same starting point. It is possible to hike down from Jiuwushan to Elephant mountain but this route has a small section of ropes and it's probably best to avoid that way at night.

More photos here

Another account of this and the other nearby peaks plus far better photographs here at Neil Wade's Blog


The trail is very easy. It's paved and well signposted. There are just a few spots that aren't very well lit and so if you go at night, taking a torch is a good idea.

We drove up to the temple for the start of the trail but it's fine to walk up from Fude street and so taking a bus would be fine.

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