As time goes by, it’s getting harder for runners to find long non-repetitive trails other than those by the roadside for workouts in the city.
As we have always been told, Hong Kong is hilly. Walking trails are ideal for moderate jogging.
Most of the trails were built by the colonial British government for garrison purposes. The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department continues the legacy by preserving those trails for citizens who want to momentarily escape the hustle and bustle of city life.
The extensive web of trails at Mount Parker on Hong Kong Island is highly recommended. I often start at Quarry Bay Park, jogging past Nan Fung Sun Chuen and then climbing uphill via Quarry Bay Tree Walk.
Soon I arrive at the site of the Taikoo reservoir which has vanished along with the company’s sugar refinery in the 1970s.
As I go up further, I see the relics of wartime stoves built by the colonial government during the Second World War for the purpose of preparing food for rationing in case war broke out in the city.
However, it was reported that those stoves were never used because Hong Kong succumbed to the Japanese invasion in just 18 days.
I then do a left turn for a shorter but steeper path to Quarry Pass, where there is a pavilion for walkers and hikers to take a rest. It is actually a crossroads. If I turn left, I can continue jogging uphill along Mount Parker Road to reach the Radar Station. If I go right, the path leads to Mount Butler.
Following the Hong Kong Trail and Wilson Trail will take me to Wong Nai Chung, and by going downhill I will arrive at Tai Tam.
Since I am aiming for a moderate jog, I go back to the city center instead after visiting Mount Butler.
Jogging uphill at 400-meter intervals, my heart beats fast and I am a bit out of breath. But it is worth the effort. I am rewarded with a panoramic view of East Hong Kong Island.
It is so much better than doing the tracks on the sports ground.
I can assure you it’s alright to accelerate for the rest of the trail from Siu Man Shan all the way back to the city center at Choi Sai Woo Park of Braemar Hill.
It was the largest and the last of the five private reservoirs built by Taikoo Sugar Company until 1975.
After the jog, not only will you feel healthier, you can also make better sense of the greeneries around you.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Dec. 16.
Translation by Darlie Yiu with additional reporting
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