HIKES IN THE KAOHSIUNG AREA:
Qi Wei Mountain is a nice getaway hike from Kaohsiung City and a relaxing way to enjoy a morning or afternoon. Qi Wei Mountain is located along the Meinong River 美濃溪 that runs between the townships of Meinong and Qishan in Greater Kaohsiung.
Driving to Qiwei takes about 30 minutes from Kaohsiung City. Once you get off Highway 10, go straight through the traffic lights and continue to the T intersection (route 28). Take a left and drive about 2 minutes until you see a bridge. Right before the bridge, take a left into the Meinong "Sugar Plantation" area. Park there and prep your gear.
Cross the street across from the parking lot and start walking along the road along the river. The road number is 113-2. The river should be on your left hand side.
As you walk along the road you will see a footpath over the river. This takes you into Qishan Township and the famous Old Street.
Along the road you will notice, in 2 different spots, trailhead signs for Qi Wei Mountain. These trails head directily into the woods and up onto a ridge. You can hike along this ridge as one way to get to the top. The ridge is a bit technical as there are big boulders to climb over as well as some ropes to get you up steep inclines. It is definitely a more challenging route.
The road option takes you about 30 minutes. It's a quiet road that winds into the countryside. Eventually you will come to trailhead marker #3 on the right hand side. It's quite clear and there is a sign and paved path that starts heading up. Here you can begin your ascent to the top.
The paved path starts an immediate ascent. As you progress along, you will notice many water bottles on the side of the trail. These are used to water the many plants and trees that have been planted along the route.
The paved path eventually ends and the stair climb begins. There are 997 stairs to the top. Many of the stairs are slanted, uneven, and very steep. They've been here and been beaten by the elements for years. It's a great workout to get up these steps, but the views of the valley get prettier and prettier.
Pictured above is a view to the north on a clear day.
Once you have reached the top of the stairs, you will see a pavilion and the view of the valley to the south. Meinong Township sits below. The total ascent is 318 meters.
Qi Wei Mountain is very popular with the locals. In the mornings and late afternoons, the pavilion gets quite busy. Many make the trek up to cook up some tea, have a snack and enjoy the sunset. There are plenty of tables and little plastic stools that others have carried up and are left there for climbers to use.
Enjoy the cool breeze and the pretty views on the mountaintop.
GETTING TO QIWEI: