Sunday, November 10, 2019

San Uk Ka (Tai Po) to Shing Mun Reservoir (Tsuen Wan) via Lead Mine Pass and Needle Hill (針山)

11km (4 hours)

6.5/10. Elevation gain is 620m 

Cel phone coverage: Full.

Water needs: 1.5 liter. Mostly shaded except for the Needle Hill ascent part

Appreciation: 8/10

Exercise Area: No

Transportation: Tai Po Market MTR exit 'B'. Green minibus 23K. Return via Green Minibus 82M to Tsuen Wan MTR.

Why it's worth it: 
Take the MTR all the way to Tai Po Market station. Get out at Exit 'B', you will see the bus terminus on the right, right off the MTR station. Take the 23K which comes by quite frequently.

You will get out at the terminus (the minibus will actually backtrack, and return on Wun Yiu road). Easy to know you have arrived because everybody's getting off, and there's these children play structures on the left of the terminus.

Keep going on Wun Yiu road.

About 7 minutes and 300m into the hike, head right. Path on the left just goes to the river.

Another 100m farther  and you'll get to this fork, follow Lead Mine Pass on the left. This is still Wun Yiu road.

Left again at the Wilson Trail map (you are on the Wilson trail at this point BTW)
Head right

At Wilson trail W087 marker, 850m into your hike, you'll see stairs on the right which you must take. You will see quite a few paths on the left and right over the next few hundred meters. These go to burial sites. Just keep straight on the path


You'll go by a waterfall, on your right

About 1 hour and 2.7km into your hike, you'll reach the toilets and gazebo at Lead Mine Pass.

Go left at the gazebo, towards Tai Po Kau
You are now on Maclehose trail

Follow Needle Hill/Grassy Hill

Lots of signage, can't really get lost

About 1h45min and 5.6km into your hike, you'll reach this fork with a view of Needle Hill ahead. Head left

Head right

Head left toward Needle Hill

Needle Hill, ever larger in front of you... Quite a few steps but nothing too hard

At the top! Then go down the other side

You've reached the road, with the dam in front of you. You can take the path on the left, or go straight as there's a flight of stairs providing a shortcut. Cross the dam. Then, just follow the paved road all the way

Keep following the road until you reach the Pineapple dam which will be on your right. That is where Green Minibus 82M's terminus is (right in front of the stairs). 82M will get you back to Tsuen Wan. 

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Please, don't litter!

Hiking is about communion with nature. So please pickup after yourself. There's no excuse to leave plastic bags, water bottles or any rubbish on or around the trails; if you managed to bring it, you can manage to bring it back!