Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Quarry Bay to Braemar Hill via Mount Butler (Photo-essay)

How convenient is it to go hiking in Hong Kong? For hikes which effectively begin approximately halfway in between
Quarry Bay or Taikoo MTR stations at the junction between King's Road and Mount Parker Road, it may seem extraordinarily convenient. And yet, quite a few of those hikes should not be underestimated in terms of their difficulty -- including the scenic 11 kilometer hike to Braemar Hill that my regular hiking companion (the fuzzyflyingbunny) I went on one spring day last year that involved ascending and descending three peaks in the form of 436-meter-high Mount Butler and 424-meter-high Siu Ma Shan as well as 200-meter-high Braemar Hill:-

As unlikely as it may seems, this "fake tree" in
what seems like the middle of urban Hong Kong

really is pointing to countryside hiking trails!

But venture less than an hour and around 300 meters up
Mount Parker Road and this is where you'll be...

If I'm not mistaken, these beautiful flowers I spied
along the trail are called
lavender sorrel

The particular hiking trail I chose to go on that day
includes a multi-step section which has come to be
known as
Hong Kong Island's Jacob's Ladder

High up on Jacob's Ladder looking westwards
towards Mount Parker
and the observatory atop it

Visual proof of our having ascended Mount Butler

Something I have come to be familiar with -- this
unmistakeable sign of
there being a trigonometric
station atop a particular Hong Kong peak

View taking in three of the Tai Tam reservoirs from Mount Parker
-- and yes, I wish the day were clearer but it's also true
that the view was already pretty breathtaking that day

To be continued... to be sure! :b


Gweipo said...

Doesn't look ANYTHING like the mount Butler I was up in the rain this past Sunday!!
you sure pick better weather...

YTSL said...

Hi Gweipo --

Aiyee! You went hiking this past rainy, cloudy gray Sunday???!!! I, OTOH, spent most of the day huddling at home -- before deigning to venturing out in the evening to watch a film at the Hong Kong Film Archive! :D

London Caller said...

I can't believe you can find such wonderful sites in Hong Kong!

Yes, you're right. Those are oxalis.
I can see their distinctive leaves.

YTSL said...

Hi "London Caller" --

Come to Hong Kong and see/find the wonderful sites (and sights) yourself! :D

And thanks for confirming my flower ID. :)

ewaffle said...

Lovely pictures--the Tai Tam reservoirs and the one looking toward Mt. Parker are especially impressive.

That looks like a lot of pretty steep steps.

YTSL said...

Hi ewaffle --

Glad you like the photos. And yes, there are quite a lot of steep steps leading up to Mount Butler from Quarry Gap -- so, yeah, they presented quite a work out for us. Still, as I think you'd agree, the views from the top were worth the effort. :)