19 June 2010

Expeditions in the Hsinchu Grasslands

It seems like the ideal thing to do here is combine my earlier upload of photos I took when walking alone in the 19 Hectares Grasslands with my post/photo uploads of the trip I took with Kaminoge, and his daughter, Amber.

The Grasslands is probably so-named because of it's designation of land for feeding cows and goats.
A map of the Grasslands park. Some routes allow you to traverse a great deal of the park in 45 minutes.  Some routes take  more than one hour. It can get pretty spooking at night, as I know from experience.

I discovered the Hsinchu Grasslands about 3 or 4 weeks ago, and haven't been the same ever since. Seriously! I feel determined, more than ever, to live in Hsinchu, because of places like this. 
Anyway, enjoying a place like this is truly not enjoying it, unless you can share a beautiful place like this with friends. I invited Kaminoge up a couple of weeks ago, and this past weekend, we made it happen. It was really nice to be able to see Kaminoge's daughter in person, after seeing her photographed and mentioned on his blog following his frequent walks in Zhongzheng Park in Fengyuan, and Dakeng Trails in Taichung.
Kaminoge's daughter, Amber, ambling amidst a herd of goats  at feeding time. The goats  slightly skittish, because Amber, despite her small size, moved faster than they did, and she was an unfamiliar presence.

Amber really had a lot of fun. It was nice to see. Unfortunately, the weather was a bit harsh, cracking thunder one minute and zapping microwaves of sun the next. We ended up seeing only the actual grasslands area, and not much of the forest area. 
Amber and the goats again. Must say hello to the goats!
Kaminoge and Amber didn't get to see this area, due to the weather and Amber's slight injury while running around some stones. There are quite a few lakes (mostly artificial ones, although some are simply ponds that have been subsequently beautified.).

There are some fantastic views of the ocean one can see when exiting the park.
Wind turbines, palm trees, and sea-walls are frequent sights along Taiwan's coast.
It's really nice that they have clean bathrooms. Also, there are bicycle paths on the west side of the park. 
You see what I mean about the wind turbines?
Gazebos and park workers planting some trees.
Views of the north. I live up a little beyond that hill. Quite a ways. It would take me about one or two hours to walk from the park. But it only takes 10 minutes to get there by scooter.
There is a steadily increasing amount of new housing development in the area.
It's nice, for once, to see nice big trees in Taiwan. A rare sight, indeed.
Forest paths.

It was a really nice walk. I'd say, however, that the best time to be in the park is probably after 16:00, or between 5:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. The sunshine can be pretty harsh in Taiwan, particularly in the wide-open areas.
After we left. Kaminoge, Amber, and I went to Jhunan. We met up with Sharon. The four of us went for a brief visit to a Vietnamese restaurant, where I had some delicious food. Vietnamese food, for me, is a recent pleasurable discovery. Plus it's incredibly healthy!

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