© Zoe Chen

Around Taiwan – Hiking with Zoe

What I love about adventures with Zoe is that we always seem to say: Why not?

The adventures always seem to begin with a very undemanding and effortless sounding goal. Let’s go to this place, that place, see this, try that, eat over there. Once we arrive we end up climbing, jumping, swimming, camping, and just in random places that neither one of us probably saw coming.

This hike was no different. We went on a random Sunday, nothing too special about the day, and drove to a place that was recommended as an easy hike with a nice vantage point at the top by one of Zoe’s friends. We arrived, found parking, a large dinosaur overlooking the lot, and lots of old people and children. We thought, ah it must be an easy hike, look at all of the people doing the hike. Let me just tell you, kids and old people and tiny chihuahuas in Taiwan are much stronger than they look. Give them a mountain and some tea to sip on and they’ll hike for hours with barely breaking a sweat.

Zoe’s photos:

The hike began pretty easily: a few stalls selling sunglasses, ice cream, and other snacks. Once we passed the last seller we were confronted with our first fork in the road. With no idea what lay ahead, we chose the road to the left. With no one else on the same trail, we wondered if we should have gone the other way, but with a quick turn on the trail we found ourselves looking at a giant butt. We had arrived at the first main stop but from the back trail. Of course.

A few photos later we decided to keep climbing. Oh look: stairs and children walking up, let’s go.

And so began our long hike up. ‘Are we there yet?’ became our main dialogue. The small children, old adults, and tiny dogs climbing up and down the trail kept me motivated, no matter if the terrain suddenly turned into a mud and rock trail where you needed to hold on to a thick dirty rope to not fall off the side of the “hill”.

Once we reached the top we unloaded our snacks and drinks to enjoy, our poor poor choices, while others unpacked large buffet style lunches. Where did they even carry all of that food? I didn’t see anyone walking around with large bags of food or drinks on our walk… We stared hungrily as we had water and dried seaweed.

With mosquitoes beginning to feast on our sweaty sticky skin, we decided it was time to begin our decent. Why not go on this random other trail? Ok. And another mini adventure.

We finally reached the beginning of the trail and our car as the sunlight finally faded behind us. Thirsty, dirty, and hungry we ended up at a night market where we played with guns, ate fried calamari, and lost all of our bingo games.

To another adventure. Cheers!

My photos:

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