Even though I have lived here for almost a year now, from time to time I still get the question; “Why Taiwan?” A week ago a girl I go to the gym with asked me this question. I told her “I heard it was an adventure junkie’s secret paradise”. She was taken aback (most Taiwanese are) by this answer, “Really? And have you found that to be true?” Well let’s see, since last Sunday I have gone river tracing in Yilan, ran an obstacle course 10k in Taipei, and went to Fulong Beach for an all night long D.J party,(on top of working and going to Muay Thai classes). Yeah, I have found that Taiwan fills my adventure fix pretty well, and on a regular basis, gotta get my fix.
Last Sunday, the river trace in Yilan, my second time going, was more challenging that Wulai by far (I guess I graduated from kindergarten level). It only took about three hours round trip.
A few parts were pretty tricky to climb up and we had to get out the ropes and do a lot of maneuvering to find the best path.
We stopped to have lunch by the waterfall at the end before turning around. Lunch is always the hardest part because you stop moving and the water soaks in, I always am freezing the second half of the trace no matter how prepared I think I am. Charlie and his crew, ever prepared always bring a kettle and some instant coffee and tea which is key after being in a cold river for over an hour.
At the end we were rewarded by getting to jump down a waterfall.
This past Saturday I participated in the Conquer Challenge run in Taipei. It was a 10k race consisting of 20 obstacles along the way. I run everyday and I ran cross country in college but by no means did I think I was in 10k race shape. My goals were to finish, not stop, and not poop while running.
The course:I exceeded my own expectations. Not only did I find the obstacles not challenging but I was dissapointed when I got to the 9k marker and I wasn’t tired, I was saving energy the whole time until way too late, I could have been a lot faster. Nonetheless, I finished in around an hour and 5 minutes and was the first girl in my time slot to finish. That felt pretty damn good.
Climbing obstacle The finish where I was awarded and congratulated by scrawny girls in belly shirts who probably couldn’t even run 1k, (exactly what I want to see at the end of a race thank you Asian gender roles).
After the race I rewarded myself and got right on the train to Fulong Beach. A beach day reward turned into a beach party night reward which quickly turned into scorching hot beach morning in a tent (unrewarding).
Anyway my point is that yes Taiwan is an adventure junkies paradise, and you don’t have to look far to find what you need.