Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Capturing experience 2.0

Drone with GPS tracking!
I saw this at MTBR.com >>
Well, there is always a gadget every day and flying drones while fun didn't really appeal to me. They felt too fiddly and was more like a play thing. If this would do what it promise to do, I think it would be a great tool for the photographer and video guy to capture cycling experience. The perspective it gives will be very different and interesting. Like what we see from the very inspiring film Beyond beauty, Taiwan from above
Do you have any experience on drones and do you think it will take off?

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Music and bicycles

Music is life and so is cycling. To some that is. I found this online and want to share. Its a really nice feeling! A long bike with a rapper makes for a mobile music that feel and sounds really good. I have a Surly Dummy long bike...so I really like to try this out in Singapore. BBButttt I really can't sing. So if you are a musician who like to play on our sunday rides, pls send me a note and we can plan a ride with music!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Small wheels big smile - Simple fun!

Photo Credit: Turodrique
This wonderful photo of a boy popping a wheelie by Turodrique really made me smile. 
It's that simple really. Just to be able to ride a bike. 
Who cares if its a cheapo non branded bike. 
Who cares if it is just riding around your block. 
Who cares if the world changes and there are so much noise in your life. 
The smile on the kid face simply said it all. 
I am on my bicycle. I love riding it! It's just fun! 
Let's keep it this way. Keep it Simple, keep it fun! 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Packing up to go back Taipei

Pros at work
This is how our luggage and bikes were transported from Ann Tong to Taipei. Its amazing how much we can load up this small lorry!
Start... load 'em up!
oh oh... still got more.. how?
Mai keng... take photo.. come help har! 
Tada... squeeze squeeze abit! It works!
Covering with Taurpaulin... incase rain

Taiwan LCSG Tour 12th Dec day 6

Route: Ang Tong Old train Stn PCN - Yushan mountain reserve part ending at start of Walami trail
Map link
Photo link
Route for day 6
taken from Google map

Shot of Gary's Go Pro mounted on the front of his bike
Yah, its abit chilly. Don't forget ur camera!
power stick to rev up the engine... 

We visited the old Antong train station. It has been converted into a bike path but perhaps business was slow. The Giant rental shop had closed for some time (judging from the wear on the wall paint)
abit crummy 
Riding on the old train PCN. Looking over the padi fields and mountains. 
Eliasha with his troll nearing the bridge 
Still it was great to be able to cycle slowly; to see the rice fields and mountain at the horizon.
what a view!
The smaller blocks are supposed to slow down the flow of the water during the floods. 
The dry river bed with lots of sediment
Geography lesson on what happened here
one for Janny
brief break at the PCN. 
As we rode towards the river, it was meeting point of two tectonic plates, which shifted during the 1999 earthquake The Taiwanese authorities had to realign the train path and the former station was abandoned until it was repurposed as a cycling path.
I chatted with this nice ah ma, She was astounded that we came all the way from SG to cycle. And she was happy to see us!
At Yuli Red Bridge
Enjoying the country side.... 
cycling and soaking everything in
We also went to Yu Shan national park which we rode all the way up the old Walami trail. This trail is an ancient trail which connects to Batongguan.  Lunch was on the top of the mountain pass and really was a nice experience. 
This concluded the super nice LCSG ride to Taiwan. Tomorrow we head back to Taipei and some would be flying off to Singapore. I am very thankful for the opportunity to be riding along side some really nice folk. Its the company that made is so fun. Also very grateful for Encik George and Cindy for their leadership and efforts. Taiwan Tourism Board, he is your man to bring more SG cyclists to Taiwan :) 

going up towards the Naan vistor centre
Why a support vehicle?  Because we can have a break where ever we want and have bananas or snacks. 
even hot coffee!
So that you can enjoy the views in quiet and slowly zip coffee. Its a wonderful feeling!
The small things in life. They are so beautiful. If u stop and see
Totally no cars... just us and nature!
The waterfall along the way

Every where is just beautiful
Entrance to Yu Shan National Park
Makan at the Nature park
Chatting invariably will turn into a poison session.. Pei Sze cannot believe how light Nixs wheel is!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Beyond Beauty: Taiwan From Above (看見台灣)

I seldom watch movies and the ironic thing was that I watched one while I was in Taiwan. It's good and that's why I keep an blog entry on this. 
The gist of it. 
"How would you like to see Taiwan like a bird or a cloud. How would that feel like?" 
The film is done by a aerial photographer, Mr Chi Po Lin. Initially he wanted to just take "beautiful things/ photos. But then one day, he realized that there must be a greater meaning behind his work. So what he did was that he took 2 sets of photos. One set was a set of beautiful scenery and the other set was about another perspective and no as "glam" things.  Soil erosion and pollution for example. And he mixes and contrast them in this film so that he can show Taiwan as it is. 
More infor on the film here. 

Taiwan LCSG Tour 11th Dec day 5 - Dong Li old train station

Old train station convert to "Steel horse" bicycle station
Sensitively done. Not cleaning up all the remnants but leaving some as a tribute to the history of the place.
After Liushishishan, we visited the 东里 old train station on our way back. 
soaking in the beautiful vibes. 

Places of interest around the vicinity. Very suitable for cyclist to visit.
Abit about the place. There was a major earthquake in1999. The tectonic rift plates shifted so much that the Taiwan authorities had to re-route the 2 train stations (Dongli and AngTong).  The former station was then re-purposed the old  a Park connector. The old train installation were retained and built upon. Nicely done without loosing the initial character of the place . 

drip coffee with a special milk that the boss show how is done. Very nice aroma!
have a cuppa!
There was a small cafe at the old Dong li train station. Over very nice coffee, we chatted with the friendly lady boss who was originally from Taipei. She told us her story that she quit her day job and moved to the countryside to do this. Simple life and not earning much but she finds it so fulfilling loves the whole place to bits. 
The cafe lady motto. 

Taiwan LCSG Tour 11th Dec 2013 day 5

Route: Ang Tong to 六十石山Lui Shi Shi Shan (60Rocks mountain)
Distance: 20 odd km. Mother of all climb(800m elevation)... Short but intense. Cold on the top. 
Photo link here 
Route from Ang tong to Liu Shi Shi Shan 
This is how it looks at 六十石山  - Photo credits from http://www.roundtaiwanround.com/118/Taiwan/east-rift-valley
Encik speaks "We going over the mountain, thru the tunnel. Abit tiring but ok one.  I ride slow ok?" ...silence...  
haha... lai liao... What will we be seeing today
Pierre fuels up... don't play play. Its all very serious business
Another drizzly wet day. After breakfast we started our ride. This time to Lui Shi Shi Shan. The area is famous for the golden needle flowers and when it is in bloom (Summer), many people would come and visit. 
This is the official Taiwan Tourism write up of the area if you like to know more.
From a couple who blogged about their experience there
Drizzling rain as we rolled along
foggy and misty
stopping for a hot tao hway and fritters
nice warm breakfast
The old lady boss was so happy that so many customers in the morning
December was unfortunately not the season to see the flowers but still, we just needed an excuse to be riding. 
The route was ok and flattish. 
Now you know what to do with that spare bike of yours sitting in the store room

The signage for Liushishishan
Turn in to more rice fields... I think thats the mountain we supposed to cycle up.. gulp
Most challenging portion was as the 60 Rocks mountain and the beginning 2-3km. It was steep steep. 
straining at the switchbacks.. it's really steep. I need a super granny gear

Engine over heated... 
lai lai.. have some bananas... Super helpful Elaine!
mid way up and this is how it looks
higher up we go
more foggy and colder as we reach the top
small beautiful violet flowers 

when the fog clears.. it looks great!

group photo on the top!
Tech tip. when too cold, wear a disposable plastic gloves and then your gloves. It works!
On the way down, I skidded into a bush even after applying lots of braking and slowing down. Do be very careful when you visit this location.   
full concentration going down...