Mount Sandiaoling (A Sandiaoling to Jiufen Ridge Walk)

The lovely Two Phoenix Waterfall is near the start of the hike

The lovely Two Phoenix Gorge Waterfall is near the start of the hike

The hike ends at Jiufen, in the shadow of shapely Mount Keelung

The hike ends at Jiufen, in the shadow of shapely Mount Keelung, which dominates the view on the trail descending from Mount Jingua

Some of the trails in the this book (but not the Mount Sandiaoling trail) are described in detail on pages 80-81 and 124 -137.

Some of the trails in our walk (but not the Mount Sandiaoling trail itself) are described in detail on pages 80-81 and 124 -137.

Add another wonderful trail to the plethora of wonderful trails in the upper Keelung River Valley. The Sandiao Dalun (三貂大崙) trail, which basically connects Sandiaoling station with Houtong along the fine ridge to the east of the Keelung River via the historic Golden Letters Tablet (金字碑) is neither one of the most strenuous nor the most beautiful of the trails in the area, but those are very relative qualifications, because in most other areas around Taipei this would be prime hiking territory. In the event, the trail seems known only to hiking groups, which can only be a big “plus”.

The trail forms the constant centrepiece of several interesting routes that connect Sandiaoling with Jiufen and Jinguashi. This makes for an interesting hike culturally as well as a very scenic one, connecting the coal mining areas (and relics) of the upper Keelung River Valley at Houtong with the gold and copper mining centers on the other side of the ridge, passing a couple of atmospheric, long abandoned miners’ villages on the way, now nearly reclaimed by the jungle. Continue reading