A mountain bike adventure on an historic but decomposing trail to the summit of Neng Gao Shan in Taiwan. Story and photos by Lee Trumpore
At only 50 miles wide,Taiwan has more than 250 mountains above 3000 meters (9,800ft) many of which rise out of the ground at near vertical angles to form a spine running North to South for almost the full length of the island. Neng Gao Shan is number 60 on the list. And a trail once used by occupying Japanese armies to control local tribes now serves as the primary route to the top and across the surrounding peaks.
A midnight departure from Taipei with a few stops en route brought us to a remote trailhead at 4:30am. Bikes were built under headlamp and gear was traded between packs to spread out the load. With a 9 mile, thin air climb ahead of us we were counting every gram...