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Monday, June 6, 2011

An Encouraging Sign: My Ride Through The Hills of Dakeng

Encouraging Sign

I have been taking things easy and doing some interesting stretches which seem to be working, and so I decided to test my knee in the hills of Dekeng above Taichung city. I figured I could easily coast home if things went poorly. As of today, all signs are pointing toward a solid recovery.


I took things easy and got a late start with an easy warm-up out to the 85C on Dong Shan Rd. near Dakeng. The weather was already oppressively hot and humid, so and iced coffee made things a wee bit better. I also had a chance to stretch my hip. What you can't see in the picture above is my leg tucked up behind me against a railing.


I followed the road up the Buzi River toward the CKS Campground and hiking trail No. 4. I casually retraced my first excursion out of Taichung City many years ago, when I discovered mountains and hills had been hiding behind a veil of mist and fog.

Making It Up The Hill

When I ordered the parts for this new bike I had been feeling confident and self assured. I had been doing some great climbing with a standard 39/53 tooth crank with a 12-27 cog. I decided I would harden up and abandon my old compact crank. I was missing it today. After 3 1/2 moths of limited riding my strength and endurance is suffering. I could keep above 20mph in the flats and 10mph climbing, but I was getting tired. I also was not going to try and push or really stand on the pedals. I already put myself out an extra month by trying to climb too much too soon.

I made my way up the hill and stopped to stretch the hip BEFORE it turned into knee pain.

Action Shot

My New Friend


I was surprised to be able to push up over the hill and it was over sooner than I remembered. I was feeling pretty accomplished.

Dakeng Scenic Area


Feeling On Top Of The World


Go Anywhere. Do Anything

The Fun Part

I took a few minutes to rest and then "Ka-thunk!" I shifted to the big ring for a fast descent along a twisting, narrow road.

When I Smile

I was flying along at about 35-40mph. One thing I really love about this bike is that it descends like a guided missile. You pick a line and stick with it. On the old bike I was always over-shooting my turns. This bike slices through them like a scalpel. So much fun.

Friendly Rider

I slalomed down to Taiyuan Rd. and then headed up to the Warehouse 185 for a coffee. The knee was feeling great. I headed out for a family function in Daya and then stayed in the big ring for a fast, but tiring, stretch back home. I pushed my knee and it felt healthy. Today was huge for me in getting back into form.

Distance: 42 miles
Max Speed: 40mph
Average Speed: Never Mind
Knee: Pain Free

New Feature in Dakeng


  1. That's not 129. What roads did you take?

  2. I can't remember. I took the 129 up to the Big Tree and hung a right. You know the road that goes up to the Number 4 Trail? That. Then I came down the other side to Taiyuan Rd.

  3. Good news indeed. Great shot of the Seven, especially the once where you framed it in shadows. Nice. I get road bike lust when you talk of guided-missile descents. Stop it! I can't afford another bike! : )

  4. The more I read your posts, the more I want to move back... Really wish I can establish a life there. The people are so lovely.

  5. Thanks Chris! I really love it here.