Wednesday, November 9th, 2016
Victor is headed back to Taipei today via bus and train, I'm continuing on the bicycle to Jade Mountain then northwards to points unknown. Today's highlight: monkeys, specifically Formosan Rock Macaques.
Breakfast provided by the hotel (at a different location we had a hell of a time finding) is such a sad affair that we skip it and eat somewhere else. Even at the discounted rate we got the hotel is a ripoff, but that's usually the way it is in places like this (remote parks). They've got you by the short hairs, particularly when you're on a bicycle and you can't exactly drive to the nearest city and come back during the day.
I head east towards Yu-shan, the road winding along a ridge with views to the south until it crosses over and the views are to the north. It's not warm, to be expected given the altitude.
There are scads of monkeys along this road. Most of them are shy and jump up into the trees as I approach, until I come across a gang of them hanging out in a grassy area next to one of the park buildings. These guys must be completely accustomed to people. They don't blink an eye when I pull up, in fact one of them tries to open my handlebar bag.
At the top I stop in the visitor center to ask about the status of the road heading down the other side of the mountain. They say it's fine, about 3 hours of descent. I thought I was in for a lot more climbing today but I guess not. Good news, my legs need a break from yesterday. Cue 3 hours of coasting around switchbacks while I admire the views.
I have some difficulty finding the B&B I booked because their signs are only in Chinese. I eventually figure it out with my phone (the phone is a lifesaver in a place like Taiwan where I can't even read simple signs). The B&B is nice, run by a friendly guy. Between his rudimentary English and my fumbling Chinese we work it out.