Fushan hike 9/2

Fushan 2006 green_fushan_map Fushan 2006 taipei_hiking_fushan

Up at 05:30, New Garden City about 06:10, we take off for Wulai's Fushan Village 福山村. Formerly, everyone passing south towards Fushan had to stop in Xinjian 信賢 to apply for a mountain entry permit. Passage to Fushan now only requires a "B" type (乙種) permit which doesn't need to be filled out. Anyone going on an adventure on any of the trails out of Fushan must apply for an "A" type mountain permit (甲種入山證), showing an itinerary and proper equipment at the police station in Xinxian 信賢 just north of the check point. The purpose of the permits is to know where people are in case a rescue is required.

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"Don't play in the dangerous water"
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Trail down for kiyakers

Trails down to the river at 11km where kiyakers put in, 8:15AM. We see a group of around 10 Large-billed Crows 巨嘴鴉 Corvus macrorhynchos on the wires and road as we approach Fushan.

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bridge work
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Common Bluebottles and Great Mormons

With Elijah and Baboo, we start walking at 08:30, heading across the suspension bridge and plan to go along the lower trail which runs due south (what we used to call the county line trail) generally following the course of the Zhakong River 扎孔溪. The suspension bridge has recently been rebuilt.

Common Bluebottle 青帶鳳蝶 Graphium sarpedon connectens and Great Mormon swallowtails 大鳳蝶 Papilio memnon heronus are on the ground around a recently poured cement bridge cable support, perhaps getting some element leaching out from the new cement - four or five Papilio to maybe 20 or so Graphium.

Fushan 2006 dan_0952 永澤黃斑蔭蝶 Neope muirheadi nagasawae Fushan 2006 dan_0954
姬黃三線蝶 Symbrenthia hypselis scatinia
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first fork
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9:30, signs
It is a typical late summer day, muggy and warm early. There are a few other people on the trail, a woman with her dog at the bridge. Not much bird activity, so we make good time and get to the first fork after about 40 minutes. To the right is the way up to Lala Shan 拉拉山 in Taoyuan County 桃園縣, a trip we have made several times in the past, most recently in February 2004.
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Notocrypta curvifascia curvifascia
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We continue on the lower trail which is much less traveled and somewhat overgrown for about 20 more minutes when we come to a side trail to the left heading to Mogu Shan with the time of 260 minutes.

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Taiwan habu
Protobothrops mucrosquamatus
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We continue on for a few more minutes when Tammy screams, "A snake!" Dan and the two dogs had walked right over it, being in the lead, and never saw it. It was amazing that she saw it as even though it was in the middle of the path, the path was overgrown and the snake was perfectly cryptically colored. A Taiwan habu 龜殼花 (guei ke hua - turtle-patterned) 、烙鐵頭 Trimeresurus mucrosquamatus or Protobothrops mucrosquamatus. We take some photos and then continue on for a little ways, but soon turn around and get past the snake on our way back. 10:00 AM

Vipers typically have broad, triangular heads. Most are also heavy-bodied with relatively short, stender tails. Their long fangs permit deep penetration and envenomation of prey. The hinged-fang mechanism allows their storage against the roof of the mouth when not in use. Viperines are usually terrestrial, feeding on small mammals, birds, other vertebrates. They are mostly nocturnal, when they can rely on their pit organs to detect prey. The pit-organs lie on each side of the head between the nostril and eye and contain infrared receptors allowing the snake to detect prey whose body temperature differs from background temperatures.

We confirm our previous impression that the trail south might be rough going after a little since it is not as well traveled, and correspondingly less well maintained. Nevertheless, a beautiful area to spend time in, even if you do not get anywhere in particular.
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reaching red roots
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too much to drink
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Taking a break (11 AM) at the easterly turn off towards mushroom mountain 模故山 (4 hours) The last photo shows a typical cut through the earth for the flat narrow-gauge rail line once used to harvest the area's lumber.

Fushan 2006 dan_0985 Formosan Piedwing 中華珈蟌南台亞種 Psolodesmus mandarinus dorothea Fushan 2006 dan_0993
Erebus ephesperis
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藍丸灰蝶, 烏來黑星小灰蝶 Pithecops fulgens urai
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Formosan Piedwing Psolodesmus mandarinus mandarinus
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紅邊黃小灰蝶 Heliophorus ila matsumurae
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姬黃三線蝶 Symbrenthia hypselis scatinia
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Nigrofomes melanoporus
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hornets warning
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Burnet Moth
Erasmia pulchella
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Torenia concolor
倒地蜈蚣, 釘地蜈蚣, 四角銅鐘, 蜈蚣草
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Black Bulbul
Hypsipetes madagascariensis
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Formosan Gossamerwing Euphaea formosa, female. endemic
Fushan 2006 dan_1085 褐翅蔭眼蝶、永澤黃斑蔭蝶、蒙鏈眼蝶 Neope muirheadi nagasawae Fushan 2006 dan_1101
Elymnias hypermnestra hainana
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Neope muirheadi nagasawae
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Formosan Jewelwing Matrona cyanoptera, male. endemic
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Crumble Cap
Coprinus disseminatus


We think we hear a Large Hawk Cuckoo Cuculus sparverioides. We hear Barbets chirping, but not into their full call. Gray-cheeked Fulvetta Alcippe morrisonia Tammy sees a Yuhina. Bronzed Drongo (Dicrurus aeneus). We hear several Gray Treepie Dendrocitta formosae just over the bridge.


烏來黑星小灰蝶 Pithecops fulgens urai Found in the Wulai area and the central mountains, with other subspecies in Japan and Assam.

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Warning of trail work, including bridge
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Back out at the suspension bridge at 12:15.

We stop in the main police station at Xinjian 信賢 on the way out and talk with the men on duty for a few minutes about the current situation with mountain passes. They say that you must register with them to go on any of the mountain trails. It is ok to go to Haben, Lala Shan, Chaken Shan, etc. as long as you give them the details of your itinerary. It is all about them having to go fetch people who get lost or get into a jam out in the woods.

Photo names starting with "dan_" by Dan Chamberlin