Fitskuul · Nov 4.2018

WULING DOUBLE – EAST ASCENT VIA HUALIAN

AN UNFORGETTABLY BEAUTIFUL AND BRUTAL DAY - EAST ASCENT WULING VIA TAROKO GORGE

"Don't you have such high mountains in Indonesia? Oh Yes we do, and even higher! but we do not have roads that run that high up." This pretty sums up the lure of Wuling Peak, standing at 3250m above sea level to cyclists who does not believe in pleasure without pain. There are two ways up to this gorgeous peak and this is from the east coast of Hualian city via Taroko Gorge, Tianxiang and Guanyun - the most scenic route. It is a 70-90km challenge depending on where you start gaining over 3000m in elevation. We have to climb higher than the peak before descending briefly and climbing up all over again in the final battle to the finish. And since we have come all the way here, there is only one thing to do. Climb it TWICE, from both the East and West side. This is our second ascent and we are real fortunate to be blessed with perfect weather for this beast of a climb.

There is a time limit about six hours to complete this ascent due to weather conditions at this time of the year and it does not help that our legs are already heavy from the west ascent the day before. However the weather is even better today with cool breeze and sunny roads and that helps a lot!.

We started somewhere before Tianxiang, 15km into the mountain to save some time since its relatively flat at that stage. And we are greeted by some of the most stunning places on Earth to ride on - the amazing Taroko Gorge. It is an unforgettable experience that everyone should try.

And so we did it! One Wuling Peak, two ways up and a hell lot of fun and suffering. Rastra and Johan from Indonesia are first timers to the Wuling and they finished well, Chuah is from Taiping and he too is a rookie that defies all odds to conquer Wuling, twice. As for me, its my third double and also my fastest attempt as I am travelling with a smaller fitter group. Will I be back? Lets just say there are two more trips in 2019!