Tuesday, May 1, 2018

A memorable Lantau hike on the 11th anniversary of my move to Hong Kong :)

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Eleven years ago today, I moved to Hong Kong to work and live.  One reason why it's easy for me to remember the date of my arrival in the Big Lychee is that May 1st is a public holiday in this part of the world.  In contrast, I have little memory of what the weather was like on May 1st, 2007.  But thanks in part to this blog post, I'm going to remember that May 1st, 2018 was a beautiful weather day: warm and humid but largely sunny, with high visibility levels and bright blue skies!
After I underwent wisdom tooth surgery last Friday, I was not sure for a few days whether I'd feel up to go hiking on Lantau Island this May Day as planned with a friend.  Happily, when the day I arrived, I felt able -- and indeed eager -- to trek from the eastern end of Shek Pik Reservoir's dam over to the village of Shui Hau along Lantau Trail Section 9.    
Like much of the rest of the Lantau Trail, Section 9 offers up a number of pretty scenic views along the way.  And like virtually all of the sections of this 70 kilometer hiking trail crossing Hong Kong's largest island that I've been on (bar for that which takes one up and down Sunset Peak), it can be surprisingly bereft of other people -- even on a day when much of the populace don't have to work -- which, of course, adds considerably to its charm.
Indeed, if I were to exclude from my tally the folks who were camping at Lo Kei Wan this holiday, it really was the case that I saw far more butterflies, moths, crickets, cicadas and other bugs than fellow humans while out hiking on that particular section of Lantau this afternoon!  And this particularly so since on two occasions during today's excursion, we came across swarms of the colorful yellow moth known in Latin as Obeidia tigrata and in English as Orange Magpie Moths!
On most other hikes, coming across those two moth swarms would be my top critter spotting experiences for the day.   On this day to remember, however, I would like to gleefully report that I also came across a pair of long-legged crane flies unashamedly going at it and consequently was able to add to my already pretty diverse "doing what comes naturally" photo collection which began several years ago with a pair of Orange Magpie Moths which were lying so still I initially thought they were dead before my much more knowledgeable mother informed me otherwise! ;b 


Anonymous said...

I should have come your way. Forgetting the Labor Day Mainland tourist madness, I made a huge mistake by going to Ham Tin, Tai Long Wan with overseas visitors.
What a pity, it was crowded and the trail was dirty with litter everywhere. Despite the beautiful scenery, I did not enjoy it.
I wish I could speak Mandarin so I could tell off the people littering along the way. I wonder what can be done to manage our parks, may be we can start issuing camp permits and impose hefty camping fees for tourists.

YTSL said...

Hi Sophia --

It upset me so to read about what happened at Ham Tin, Tai Long Wan these past few days. Apparently, the situation's not great over at Pui O and Mui Wo (the latter of which I had actually been to on Friday and hadn't seen any crowds) too.

It's a travesty that this has happened and that the authorities look to have permitted it to. In particular, I think litterers should be caught and punished -- and also those tour companies that organize those camping holidays on public land.