Happy New Year!
Tataka (Tatajia) - if visiting the Alishan area or traveling in Southern Nantou County, I highly recommend stopping and spending some time (from a few minutes to a couple days) hiking in the area.
Download useful map here and here.
My four suggestions:
Lazy: Get out of car look around. Wander up to the visitor center, have a coffee.
Easy: Hike through the forest along the asphalt road towards the observatory, halfway (at Linjhih trailhead) along look over the saddle for views to the south and Yushan. Can also walk to Tataka Anbu -the trail head for Yushan.
Full-day: Do a figure-of-8 incorporating the observatory, the Tataka Anbu (Tataka Saddle - the real trailhead for Yushan), the asphalt road and the hiking trail on the south side of Lulin/Linjhih Mountains. Great views of the valleys to the south and Yushan's southern peaks. Note the section between Tataka Anbu and Mt Linjhih, while well maintained, is steep.
Quick Peak: Hike to the top of Dongpu Mountain. Great workout and fantastic views of the valleys to the north and Yushan's Main/North Peaks.
Dongpu Mountain as seen from Linjhih Mountain (looking northwards).
Consider avoiding Alishan and staying in the very basic Upper (Shang) Dungpu Hostel near the parking lot. Outside of the big holidays, no one has a problem with people camping in the carparks next to the signs saying 'No Camping'.
Remember most people (if they visit at all) have left the area by mid-afternoon. After that it is quiet, very quiet! Bring all you need. Must write a fuller post specifically on this subject. In the meantime, look out for the leaflet/map in English to this area 20km from Alishan forest resort. Note this area is over 50 km from Dongpu Hot Spring resort village and has no public transport.
See these photos of a recent trip there.
Yushan ascents. [Note this is an old post. Click on banner for most recent news]
The main peak of Yushan is officially opening March 6th (not the 1st as 'planned' previously). We have some dates for March and April ascents via Tataka. Note the approach via Batongguan Meadow is still closed and in terrible condition, we do not expect this route to be an option for some time. Likewise, all other Yushan National Park trekking routes are still closed. See this for comments on the Southern Cross-Island highway. (Trails elsewhere in Taiwan mostly fine)
March 11/12 (meeting up the previous evening) FULL
March 17/18 (meeting up the previous evening) FULL
March 23/24 (meeting up the previous evening) FULL
April 7/8 (meeting up the previous evening) FULL
April 20/21 (meeting up the previous evening) FULL
May/June/July dates - and other mountains - in next post.