We went hiking on the first day of 2017 to take advantage of the gorgeous weather. The Ninety-Nine Peaks Forest Trail [九九峰森林步道] is a 1,930 meter long trail in Nantou County’s Caotun Township [草屯鎮]. We brought the kids here because we figured they were getting tired of the trail we frequent in Jhongsing Village. Furthermore, being a holiday weekend, most of the popular trails in Nantou County were probably going to be packed. We only encountered a couple dozen people on the trail. Amazingly, both kids made it through the whole trail without asking to be carried!
Nature versus Nurture
I recently spent some time walking around the grounds of the National Taiwan Craft Research and Development Institute [國立臺灣工藝研究發展中心] in Nantou County’s Caotun Township. The facility is located along the mighty Provincial HWY #14 that once served as the main route to Sun Moon Lake. The traffic along this road has decreased substantially since the construction of Freeway #6 which allows tour buses to completely bypass Caotun on their way to Sun Moon Lake.
Temple parades in Taiwan are always exuberant events characterized by a lot of noise and colors. I stumbled upon two separate parades that were held two days apart in Caotun. Unfortunately, due to time constraints I was unable to follow each parade for too long, but did come back with a handful of nice shots.
My friend and fellow blogger Mark Forman came down from Taichung for a much overdue photowalk around Jhongsing Village and Caotun. We had talked about having one here from way back when we had our photowalk around the Old Taichung Winery. Luckily, we were blessed with wonderful weather for our walks around morning markets, parks, and temples.
Described by the fantastic travel website Taiwanese Secrets as Caotun’s Creepy Taoist Temple, Tzude Temple [慈德宮] rests on a high perch overlooking Caotun Township. Occasionally, I’ll ride up the steep hill to this spot for exercise before work or during lunch break. This particular time, I took my recently acquired Nikon FM2 loaded with ISO100 film and gave the area a closer look.
This morning I had the chance to grab a few shots of today’s solar eclipse, which was the longest to occur in the twenty-first century and won’t be surpassed in duration for another 123 years. Although it wasn’t a total eclipse when viewed from Taiwan, I consider myself very lucky to have had a chance to witness it.
Catherine and I were looking for some space-saving solutions in the early evening last Sunday when we were startled by the abundant sound of firecrackers going off outside. The sound was close, so we went outside to check out the commotion. Luckily I had my camera with me to take a few pics of the festivities.
Built in 1928 by Hong Dezhong when Taiwan was under Japanese rule, the Mansion of Glory (Fu Long Tang) is located in Caotun in Nantou County. The renovations of the site appear to be almost complete with the exception of the wall which surrounds the estate.