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Monday, July 12, 2010

Taichung County Route 95 (80km)

I am getting ready to go on vacation, so I really have nothing to do for a couple days except get a little more riding in. With no work today, I thought I would expolore a little bit and try to find a route to the #136 from Hsin She.

Everything felt perfect today. It was one of those rare days when you've done some good training combined with a little bit of rest so the energy level remains constant all day. I started with a climb up the #129 and had plenty of spring in my legs so I kept going. I was trying to find a road I haven't taken in 10 years, but I just can't remember how to do it. Still, the 95 was a gorgeous road. There are dozens of high waterfalls and, obviously, butterflies all along the road up from Zhong he village.

I kept climbing up the mountain and asked a cafe owner if there was a through route to the 136. He assured me there was and so I continued up, up, up. The road narrowed and started looking more like a cyclocross route. With dark clouds looming and nobody in sight to ask (it was really desolate up there), I turned around and back tracked. On my way out I saw a woman gathering laundry and so I asked her if there was a route to the 136. She replied that the roads don't go anywhere and I would have to turn around. I love Taiwanese directions and local knowledge. Huh!

I had to climb up one of the nasty hills I was so overjoyed with on the descent and the power was right where I needed it. I steadily climbed out of the valley just in time to catch the dark clouds in the corner of my eye. I turned on the gas and tried to get out of the hills before the rain started. Just as I entered Taichung City the clouds opened up. I got soaked, but I had a great time. Next time I'll have to go out on the scooter to find that old route again.

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