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Castle Peak Basin, lies to the west of Castle Peak,consists of a series of criss-crossed ridges which soils are heavily eroded, but have some famous pictures.

Castle Peak Basin - A trail for hiking in Hong Kong

Castle Peak Basin
Distance: 7.0 Km
Duration: 5.0 hours
Diff.:

4.5

Scn.:

4.0

Start: Bus 58M, 58X get off at Leung King Estate, 960 at San Wai Court. Light Railway at San Wai Station

End: Bus K52 to Tun Mun Railway Station

The trail is full of loose gravel and quite steep in part that requires to clamber, recommend to prepare gloves. There are many branch paths with no signpost.

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* The data provided from Google Map is only for general reference with deviation from the actual environment.

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Leung Tin Au

Follow Tin King Road ahead from the light railway station of San Wai, then at the junction take the left path to join the one-way road into Leung King Estate. Head the road to the second right turn, then follow the left concrete path uphill. Along it up to the right turn near Leung Tin Au, take the muddy path on the left for a shortcut. After the steep climb, it joins the main path to climb Castle Peak. After Head the main path to the left for a very short distance, then immediately follow the right path to Castle Peak Basin at the fork. (If you miss the entrance, you could follow the uphill path up to a knoll. There is also a side path on the right to Castle Peak Basin.)

Note: The landform is quite complicated with many branch paths along the way and no signpost. You should better understand the landform of the basin before setting out, and prepare a map and a GPS device for reference and asistance.

The uphill concrete path

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Look back to Leung Tin Au from the path to the basin

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Ng To Shui

Head the trail, it gently ascends along the hillside at the beginning and is covered with loose gravel in later section. After climbing up to the knoll, it slightly descends to the crossing. (At the crossing, heading to the left or forward could both return to the main path of Castle Peak.) Follow the right path, it slowly descends along the valley towards the west. At that time overlooking forward, Moon Canyon lies on the slightly left hillside ahead, and the hill of Fa Heung Lo could be seen in the distance as a background. When you descend to near Ng To Shui but could still see Moon Canyon, a grave on a ridge on the left down could be seen, which ridge is separated by two hillsides from Moon Canyon. The target is to climb the hillside just next to the one with the grave, which is obvious to see the loose gravel path on it. Continue on along the trail down, the gurgle of the brook could be gradually heard. Crossing the brook, it comes to the junction at Ng To Shui where is a small flat mound and a confluence of several branch paths and streams.

The right fork to Ng To Shui

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Toward the west, Moon Canyon (left), Ng To Shui (front), the hill of Fa Heung Lo (background)

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Overlook Castle Peak

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Moon Canyon

From the junction follow the obvious left path, it then winds alongside left of the brook. After climbing up the steep path with full of loose gravel which is the targeted hillside you have confirmed before, deviate the main path and take the right side path (pay attention to the ribbons as a mark) that leads down to a brook. Cross the brook then take the path ahead uphill. After the steep climb, it comes to a patch of the flat land on the knoll. At that time, Moon Canyon is just at your front. Look back to the depression of Ng To Shui, the several ridges seem to stretch to there. Towards the southeast, it offers a green mountain seen and a majestic view over the lofty Castle Peak. Afterward, follow the path ahead, it leads down to the entrance of the canyon. To explore it, follow the path through the woods along the valley, it then comes to the deep. Look up around, it seems to be encircled by the escarp as if fell down into a ravine. It also offers the unique view that some of the lush tender trees and grasses grow from the rough soil in the valley.

The fork at Ng To Shui

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Moon Canyon

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Look up around in Moon Canyon

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The Red Gullies With Green Pine

Retrace the way from the valley to the entrance, then follow the left path that ascends and skirts along the right cliff edge of Moon Canyon. Up to the junction at the top of Moon Canyon, the trail joins the right path along the ridge generally towards the west. Along the way overlooking forward, you could see The Red Gullies With Green Pine, and the farther hill of Fa Heung Lo with a large rock on its hillside in the background. Further head the trail, it comes to the gullies which are not deep and which soils are partly in red with some green pine trees growing in - The Red Gullies With Green Pine. Because the soil there is slightly ferruginous, it is appeared in red in contrast with the green of the wild pine trees that can grow in the poor soils. There has suffered from the cannons bombed by humans (there was a firing range for military) and the weathering, they however fashion a peculiar landscape.

Skirting Moon Canyon up

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The red gullies and the green pines

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A green pine grows in the badland

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Bread Rock (Tai Lang Shui)

Head the trail along the top of the red gullies, it then descends. Before going down, you had better to see and confirm the horizontal straight ridge at your front which is the next track point to go. Down to a shrubland and across a brook (it may dry up or is hidden by the thick woods), follow the obscure path to the left that climbs up the targeted ridge. After joining the path on the ridge, head it to the right along the ridge (Castle Peak is at your rear). It ascends to the top of a knoll and then joins the left downhill path along the hillside towards the stream of Tai Lang Shui. The large rock as reference on the opposite hillside of Fa Heung Lo is just on the right upper. Moreover, along the downhill path, you could see the next targeted knoll which top has a small flat land on the right-forward in the valley, and which upper adjacent hillside has the obvious loose soil path where joins Fa Long Ancient Trail.

Down to the valley and across the stream, the trail joins the sylvan path alongside the stream. Head the path to the left to Bread Rock first, it then climbs the large rocks in the stream. Not far ahead, you could see a rock in the middle of the stream which seems to be a large cuboid bread that is cut into several sheets, as if it were made by the God perfectly. Afterward, retrace the way to the junction you have just been descended from the hill, go ahead for a short distance and then take the left steep path.

Branch: If not visit Bread Rock, you could turn right after crossing the stream, then soon join the left path to Fa Long Ancient Trail.

The horizontal ridge ahead is the next target

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Bread Rock at the left lower, the hillside in middle-right joins Fa Long Ancient Trail

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Fa Long Ancient Trail

Along the path, it sharply rises to the targeted knoll where have seen on the hill before. At that time, you could see an uphill path on the right hillside that leads to the hilltop of Fa Heung Lo via the large rock along the ridge. Follow the path ahead up to the junction, it joins Fa Long Ancient Trail to the right that winds along the hillside horizontally. Beyond the recession, you could overlook the sea. Head the trail, it gently winds down along the hillside. After cutting through the woods and carefully crossing the broken bridge, it comes to the village of Pak Long. Afterward, follow the concrete path to the left, then join the road on the right leading to the bus stop of Lung Kwu Tan.

The targeted hillside

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Fa Long Ancient Trail

Summary

It is always said that there is badlands in Castle Peak Basin, which is denuded landscape. Enter the basin, its another picture could be seen. The waters in the brooks are very clear in where some small fishes and even shrimps live. Moreover, Among the criss-crossed with ridges and gullies, there are also diverse and abundant wild plants growing in the valleys where seems to be an oasis. Perheps, the land have suffered from the cannons and the heavy erosion by weathering then become the various gullies covered with rather sterile gravelly soil, however, some of the plants could grow there in the very bad condition to show their strong vitality. Living in the comfortable environment, do we still remember the will to survive like the plants?

Text : Horace

Last Update : 03.11.2015

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