Day four of our trip we were on our own again. We had planned on going hiking, and my aunts suggested going to Yangming Mountain (陽明山) and to climb the Qixing Mountain (七星山). We took the MRT then a bus to get to the Yangming Bus Station. We were pretty hungry, so we grabbed some food at a stand before heading up to the Visitor Center which was a 0.7km hike.
Dante decided to sit the actual mountain hike out, and so we soldiered on without him. It was 1.0km to the trail head, then another 1.4km to the garden at the midway point. At this point my aunts said we could/should turn back. We did not listen, we saw more stairs! We thought it was fine, so we kept going for another 1.0km to the mountain peak. We hiked to both the main peak and the east peak. It was really cool being up there. Unfortunately it was cloudy so the mountain peaks were just shrouded in white. Although I think I prefer that to the heat of the beating sun if it had been clear skies.
I had a rough time going up, but going down was much easier. At the halfway point, one of the locals climbing the mountain told us that it would increase in difficulty twofold. And that at one point there was a 60° incline for the stairs. Getting to the top of the mountain was no joke, but we did it and we felt very accomplished. My fitbit said at that point we had taken ~10,000 steps and had climbed 233 floors of stairs. We made it up and down in 3 hours, so it was roughly a 4 mile trip. We were booking it, because we were afraid it’d get dark while we were ascending/descending so we pushed and we did it!
We hurried back to the bus station and made our way to Beitou (北投) so we could soak in some hot springs water. On our way to Spring Resort we grabbed some KFC for dinner, then met up with Yong and booked a private room (~$4000NT/$125USD). We had it for two hours, and it was fantastic. It was difficulty fitting the five of us in the tub at once, but we did it at one point. It was more a game of rotation as the water was really hot, so people had to get out and would rinse off with some cold water.
When our time was up we headed home, with a quick pit stop at Shilin Night Market (士林夜市) for some grub. Turns out climbing a mountain uses up a lot of calories.
Despite all the hiking, I felt pretty good. No soreness or tiredness really. I slept really well when we got home. Bed and sleep never felt so great.