Sunday, December 21, 2014

The Miaoli 51

Today Drew and I rode up the Miaoli 51 (苗51), a lovely little road that starts just north of Houli, then climbs a set of switchbacks to the top of the ridge, and rolls gently over the ridge through a national forest until it hits the train station in Sanyi. The road network between Sanyi and Jhoulan is wonderful, I highly recommend exploring it (Drew's post on it). Map below the READ MORE....

ROUTE NOTES: This very simple route just follows the Miaoli 51. Take the 13 out of Houli, but divert onto the smaller Yili bridge, which crosses the river and then goes off towards some of the best roads in the area, the Miaoli 49 to the Lengteng Broken Bridge, the 52, and the 52-3. The 51 climbs up through a graveyard in the opening switchbacks. The switchbacks and the road are easy; there is only one brutal 25% grade and it is quite short. After that the road road rolls through a national forest, empty except for people out walking, and then ends up in the strawberry tourism zone on the east side of Sanyi. Lovely little ride, especially in combination with other area roads. TRICKY PART: The tricky part is at the beginning. In the picture at the head of this post, go to the left, not the right, even though it is apparently marked SANYI on the sign. That road to the right is a dead end (the Chinese characters hand drawn on the wall actually say that. There's a sign for SANYI at the first switchback on the correct route.

Drew captures a shot. The views of the railroad viaduct across the valley are excellent.

A new angle on this old favorite of mine.

Higher up, we caught a train crossing the bridge.

We saw a few people out strolling in the uncongenial weather.

Drew climbs through the orchards.

Nice views over this valley, where I have ended and begun so many wonderful rides.

Once you reach the ridge, it becomes an easy rolling road through what I think is a national forest, though it might be part of the conservation district for the nearby reservoir.

Here, with more great choices. This will take you to the 56, which is where I wound up the other day by accident, has the best views in the area. But all these roads are great. Drew went off this way -- you can read about it in his post...
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