A great moderate hike, Tai Mo Shan is Hong Kong’s tallest hill, but hey, the bus takes you halfway up! After descending to Lead Mine Pass you’ll pass through ‘monkey country’ around the Shing Mun Reservoir, before finishing at the Pineapple Dam. Start with a slog up the hill, first on stone steps and later on road to reach the highest point you can get to on HK’s highest hill (about 30m below the summit which is occupied by a PLA radio and civilian radar facility). From here the views will be stupendous – unless you’re in the clouds. The route then descends gradually down the eastern flanks of Tai Mo Shan, and then more steeply to Lead Mine Pass (a good spot for a lunch break). From here, follow the forest road down through ‘monkey country’ (great photo ops here) to the Shing Mun reservoir and along the western bank to the Pineapple Dam, from where there is a minibus service back to Tsuen Wan MTR.
This hike is on a mixture of paved roads and rocky dirt trails. Please wear hiking shoes or strong trainers with a good tread. The hike requires a good level of fitness for some serious hill climbing. Note to ambitious beginners: there are no easy exits from this hike. Bring plenty of water or sports drinks (at least 1.5 litres) and some snacks as there is no opportunity to get supplies after you leave Tsuen Wan Station, although some stream water is available at Leadmine Pass. Bring a hat and sunblock − much of the hike is exposed to the sun and the Hong Kong weather out here is very unpredictable.
TIME OUT RATING
Length: 3 (about 15km)
Gradient (Ascent): 2.5 (about 550m in total)
Surface: 2 (well marked trails and paved roads)
Take Exit A out of Tsuen Wan MTR Station, which brings you out at an overpass. The #51 bus from there departs every 30 minutes.