Being a stone’s throw away from Kaohsiung city, Shoushan (壽山) with a max elevation of 365 meters, it provides a hilly and highly elevated escaped and is sometimes coined the “lungs of Kaohsiung”. It is home to the Formosan rock macque (particular to Taiwan), maked palm civet and black-throated Laughingthrush (ref:Wikipedia). There is quite a bit of wildlife including over 100 bird species.
There are two main entry points of ShouShan. One from the Siziwan (四子灣) area at Sun Yet San University and the other on the East side near Kushan High school (皷山國中). My couchsurfing host suggested the entry point near the high school, which has two separate trailheads shown in the map below. The two trails are shown below.
Chinese Buddha Culture Center, 中華會館, GPS coordinate: 22.655596, 120.272640
Chienkwang Temple, 千光官, GPS coordinate: 22.651443, 120.272810
Both trailhead entry points are somewhat inconspicuous. But you will see a little path with stairs that begin the trek upwards. When in doubt ask someone! They will show exactly where. These trails also are very different in nature. The Chienkwan Temple is a mining dirt road type of hike with great views of Kaohsiung. The trail leaving from the Chinese Buddha culture Center is a forest type of hike with a predefined wooden path. It is highly suggested to do a loop to see it all. It is easy to spend an entire day at this location.
The trail is ridden with rest areas. Some already include hot water, and exercise facilities that many locals use everyday.
I can say many things about this mountain. This has a multitude of trails along with small trails that take you off the beaten path. I had decided to take a small road out, found a rope climb, got lost, but luckily some locals directed me back. If you have the time to spare, and a good sense of direction, there are many roads that will lead you through some pretty neat areas. Will have to come back to explore more!
Hikes: March 2014
Written: April 2014