Monday, 29 March 2021

pic(k) of the week #2

Yesterday, Paula and I were walking along an obscure path in the Po Kak Tsai (‘poke in the eye’) area (I’ve described this path as ‘obscure’ because I’d be surprised if anyone else other than the people who live along its 150-metre length are aware of its existence). Suddenly, Paula stopped. She had spotted a lizard a short distance ahead. Naturally, I stopped too, to see whether we could take any photos, and this was the result:
These two photos were taken by Paula, but I also managed a couple of decent shots of the lizard on a vertical wall:
I already knew that geckos can scale vertical surfaces—I’ve even seen them walking across a ceiling—but I didn’t realize that this is a talent possessed by other species. I think that this is a member of the same species that I featured in Pic(k) of the Week (changeable lizard, Calotes versicolor).

I see many lizards, but in most cases they’re already doing a runner by the time I’m aware of their existence, because they see me first.

Friday, 26 March 2021

an unexpected hazard

When I established the sequence of narrow country paths that I named ‘the outer limits: path #2’ in December 2019, I couldn’t help but notice that there were several places where another path turned off the one that I was following. Consequently, in the next few weeks, I set about finding out whether any of these paths led anywhere useful (they didn’t).

However, there was one junction that I didn’t check out:
When I reached this point on my initial exploration, turning right was the obvious choice, because that way led back towards the road from which I’d started. But it took me a long time to check out the left turn (just last month, in fact). I had expected the path to go just as far as a group of houses, but it continued past there to a parking area, from where another path led away into the distance. This path eventually returned, via an extremely circuitous loop, to the parking area, from where I could then rejoin the original route.

I cycled this detour three times last week, twice by myself and once with Paula, and yesterday I decided that we should shoot a video (see below). What I hadn’t taken into consideration, because I hadn’t encountered it last week, was an unexpected hazard:
The problem wasn’t merely that it was a cow. The unfortunate animal was tethered by a makeshift rope, and if I spooked it, the rope could easily upend my bike—and me:
I’ve described the beast as ‘unfortunate’ because I suspect that it’s awaiting slaughter. The start of path #2 is along a large nullah (storm drain), and I recall seeing a small herd of feral cows there several years ago when I first explored the area. This cow has probably been seized by someone living nearby.

Of course, there are foreseeable hazards on this segment, notably a small bridge and the loose exit from it, which require intense concentration:

In fact, it’s loose and stony for about 30 metres after the bridge, but overall this detour makes an excellent addition to path #2:

Monday, 22 March 2021

journey to the west: the outer limits #3

When I established the bike ride I named ‘journey to the west’ (after a Chinese literary classic) in 2013, it was a straightforward out-and-back excursion, with a short circuit around the Kam Tin area at the most westerly point of the ride. However, it didn’t take me long to find alternative segments to parts of the return journey, together with a detour through the fish ponds west of Fairview Park and a circuit around the Tam Mei valley, which the original route merely touched.

I also improved the tour around the Kam Tin area with a couple of narrow paths, but until last winter, I hadn’t added anything else to the ride for several years. However, the trigger for a renewed bout of exploration was a new road, which I facetiously named ‘a road to nowhere’, because it seemed that it was likely to lead nowhere. In fact, it appears to have been built to provide access to an MTR emergency escape facility—Hong Kong’s high-speed rail link to the rest of China passes through the area, deep underground. However, the existence of the road, once opened, prompted dozens of quasi-industrial sites to spring up, probably illegally, around the end of the road.

Anyway, in December 2019, Paula and I found that a crash barrier on a bend on the then newly opened road meant that we could no longer continue along our established route. We decided to see where the road led to, and we found a rough track through the cluster of quasi-industrial premises. It ended in an open area, from where there was a path. Of course, we followed that and were delighted to discover that it provided a through route to a village and another road that would bring us back to the established route.

However, at one point, this road crosses a large nullah (storm drain), and there is a side road leading along it to the left. We decided to follow that, and where it came to an end, a path continued along the nullah. This path too came to an end at a T-junction with an extremely rough path. We turned right, and despite several possible options, the route we took eventually led back to the road. I decided to name these paths ‘the outer limits’, because they are as far from home as it’s possible to get.

A few weeks later, while Paula was away, I decided to check out a possible path that I’d noticed a long time earlier but never got around to investigating. That also provided a through route to the ‘road to nowhere, and we shot a video when Paula returned—we’d already videoed the first two paths. When I watched the video, I noticed what appeared to be a particularly spectacular firecracker vine at a fork in the road. I hadn’t noticed it when cycling, because it was located a short distance along the left-hand fork, and our route took the right-hand fork. And I’m not in the habit of looking around when cycling, because I’m focused on what is directly in front of me.

By the time I watched the video, it was too late to take any photos of this firecracker vine last year, but it was definitely top of the agenda for this January. I took several photos, two of which I used in Jeepers Creepers #3. And I described what happened a couple of weeks later, having stopped at the same location, when we discovered yet another new path, in Crash!

The remainder of this post is an introduction to the video we shot of the new path, ‘the outer limits: path #4’, on Saturday. This is the start:
There is nothing difficult here, but this junction requires that a choice be made:
It’s an easy choice though, because turning left here would merely return to the road we’ve just left behind or, more likely, be just another dead end.

The choice at the next junction is less straightforward. If you cross the footbridge on the right and turn immediately left, you will, within a short distance, arrive at the Taoist temple that I described in Crash! From there, it is possible to reach Kong Tai Road (the only named road in the immediate area) by a road that leads to the temple. If you cross the bridge but then turn right, the path does go a long way, but it eventually peters out.
Turning left here is therefore the preferred option.

The next choice to make isn’t long in coming:
Continuing on the main path does lead to Kong Tai Road, but a turn left here is much more ‘interesting’. For a start, this route passes an unusual house, with a recessed balcony and a covered verandah, both of which are uncommon features of village houses:
There is also the house’s name. Naming individual houses is common in the UK—there are dozens of named houses in my home town of Penrith—but I cannot recall another example here in Hong Kong’s countryside. The name roughly translates as ‘Wing’s Fragrant Residence’.

This path is much narrower than what has gone before, and it twists and turns all over the place:
Of course, this doesn’t mean that it’s difficult. It’s just more fun.

So that’s the new path. And this is the full video:

We had planned to follow this up by shooting a video of an enhanced version of ‘the outer limits: path #2’, which does have a few difficult moments, but I hadn’t fully charged the camera battery, so that will be a project for the next time we come this way.

If you enjoyed watching this video, then you will probably like these too:

Journey to the West: the Outer Limits
Journey to the West: the Outer Limits #2

Incidentally, I’ve numbered these paths according to the order in which they were discovered, but the order in which we ride them is #3, #4, #1, #2.

Friday, 19 March 2021

hidden treasure

Last Saturday, I was cycling south along Lok Ma Chau Road, which leads from a usually popular but currently closed border crossing point, when I spotted what appeared to be a particularly impressive example of bougainvillea. I didn’t stop then, mainly because it looked as though I would have to encroach onto someone’s property in order to take a decent photo.

Bougainvillea has been providing dozens of instances of intense colour for the past few weeks, and I usually do stop to take a photo (I used several in my recent post A Grand Day Out), so when, yesterday, I happened to be cycling along the same road, but in the opposite direction, I noted that the intensity of the colour was equally striking:
Having made the decision to stop, I thought that I might as well check out the display from the other side, the side that had originally attracted my attention. However, what I’d thought was someone’s property turned out to be just a common-access yard where a number of cars were parked:
The car in the photo has not been parked though. It has been abandoned. I see scores of abandoned cars along the sides of roads as I cycle around the New Territories with the telltale red writing on the windscreen.

Much to my surprise, there appeared to be some kind of artwork on the wall next to the bougainvillea, which had to be worth a closer look. Unfortunately, the heavy plastic sheeting draped across the back of the makeshift garage makes it almost impossible to get a decent picture, and the bougainvillea has grown to obscure the left-hand side of the work completely.

I had expected this work to be a mural, but it turned out to be composed of ceramic tiles! This is what it looks like from the right:
What a splendid dragon!

I did take a close-range shot of the centre of the work looking over the plastic sheeting, which wasn’t at all satisfactory:
I would wager, given its relative inaccessibility, that nobody, not even the ‘owner’ of the makeshift garage, even notices this superb image. Dragons are a commonplace sight on public buildings—there are several on the new temple I described in A Grand Day Out. And whoever originally planted the bougainvillea—it isn’t in anyone’s garden—probably hasn’t been back to prune it.

However, I will be back, given that I pass this way regularly, to see whether I can obtain some better photos.

There is also a mystery to clear up here: who was responsible for this stunning artwork in the first place? My guess is that it would have been whoever built the house whose garden you can see in the first photo above, although I doubt whether they still live there. The new occupant probably isn’t even aware of the stunning artwork on the outside of the wall that encloses their property.

Monday, 15 March 2021

pic(k) of the week

It sometimes happens that when you take a photo, you know that it will be quite some time before you get an opportunity to take a more interesting one. And that happened yesterday, when Paula and I were walking down the road that runs alongside our local river on our way to the wet market in Sheung Shui to stock up on fruit. It was a Sunday, so there was no construction work, and everything was quiet.

Suddenly, I noticed a lizard directly in front of me—I would have stepped on it in my next stride had I not seen it. It was clearly taking advantage of the warm sun, because it made no attempt to run away, and both of us were able to take several photos from a variety of different angles. The photos that I’ve chosen to use were all taken by Paula:
Naturally, I wanted to see whether I could identify the species, and after consulting a number of websites on the subject, I’ve concluded that it’s a changeable lizard (Calotes versicolor), the only member of the agamid family that is native to Hong Kong. This individual was 30–35cm long, almost two-thirds of which was its tail.

Thursday, 11 March 2021

a grand day out

I don’t often go out cycling by myself nowadays, but Paula would be busy all this week, so I decided that I could do some exploring yesterday, which I don’t often do when Paula is with me. I thought that I would start by heading east. This meant heading out of town via ‘poke in the eye’, then looping back to Sha Tau Kok Road, the only road that leads east out of Fanling. This is a road that you really don’t want to be cycling on—it’s a dual carriageway, and it carries a lot of industrial traffic—but there is a rudimentary cycle track as far as the junction with Ping Che Road, and from there I could follow Hok Tau country trail #2, followed by ‘country roads’.

I had intended to cycle to the entrance to Cheung Shan Tunnel, part of a newly opened elevated highway from China. When this was completed a couple of years ago, I regret not taking the opportunity to cycle along it before it opened, but of course that is now out of the question, although at the moment it carries very little traffic.

My object had been to follow roads marked on Google Maps to ride further east, but I should have known better. Some of the ‘roads’ near the tunnel entrance don’t exist, and others are blocked by a big construction site. Before this, I’d spotted a promising path leading out of the village of Tai Tong Wu when cycling with Paula that I wanted to check out, but I didn’t take long to reach a dead end.

I could only backtrack, but when I eventually reached Sha Tau Kok Road, I decided to follow Ping Che Road for about 1km before turning off onto an unmarked road that led back west. My first objective was the Kwan Tei North public toilet, after which I planned to do ‘optional extra’. When I first developed the ride I called ‘the final frontier’ in 2016, this was a late add-on—hence the name—but nowadays we always do it, because it’s quite a test of your bike-handling ability.

There is another road leading off the unnamed one, almost opposite the toilet, that I wasn’t sure I’d checked out before, although I probably had. This is where I took the first of the day’s photos:
Nothing but industrial premises! And yet another dead end! Actually, there are a few houses, and when I stopped to take the next photo on the way back out, I was accosted by a local resident:
He told me that his name was Ricky, and when I told him that I was from the UK, he proceeded to tell me about his family connections there. He also asked me how old I was, and he seemed quite impressed that a 74-year-old would be out cycling, although he did assume that I did so “for the exercise”. I didn’t tell him that I do it for fun. I also think he thought I was lost, because when I told him that I lived in San Wai, he started to give me directions as to how to get there.

I wonder whether he noticed me turning left at the end of his road instead of right, because on the way back west I planned to do ‘crossing the rubicon’, which I hadn’t done for some time. This leads, by an extremely circuitous route, to Sha Tau Kok Road, from where I could head home. Just before reaching the start of this entertaining segment, I stopped to take a photo of a bougainvillea that I’d included in Bougainvillea Boogie #3:
I think this is a better picture.

Of course, I wasn’t finished. My route simply took me past our house, and I’d been out for just two hours, which doesn’t count as a bike ride in my lexicon.

However, when I set off down our local river, I found the way blocked by a truck. Of course, I knew of ways to circumvent the obstruction, but I decided to cut across to Ma Sik Road and follow the cycle track there instead. It then occurred to me that since I’m passing, I might as well take a detour through ‘ignoble hill’. That didn’t go well though. Some kind of work was being carried out in one of the narrowest alleys, so I had no option but to abort and return to the cycle track.

Whenever we cycled out west in the past, we always used to follow the Drainage Services Department (DSD) access road that runs alongside the Sheung Yue River, but we can now follow the newly opened cycle track that leads to the western New Territories. And the DSD access road is now blocked by construction—our local river isn’t the only place that is being blighted by new road development! However, I was in for a surprise when I reached the expressway, which we usually cross using a footbridge:
This appears to be some kind of mini-temple, and it looks as though it has yet to be formally opened. The plaque on the right may list the names of donors to its building, and I originally thought that the characters on the roof plaque are the name of the village. However, the two small characters are Kwu Tung, which seems to be a generic name for the entire area, while the three large characters translate as ‘earth land temple’. Given the sheer amount of construction in the area, and how expensive this must have been to build, I can’t help but wonder who paid. One clue to this conundrum lies in the elevated highway that I referred to earlier. No fewer than four of the villages whose land the highway crosses have built elaborate village arches at their entrances in the past few years, and I’d already conjectured that this was a kind of compensation for building on village land.

Meanwhile, it's worth taking a closer look at the designs on the roof. I took this photo from the footbridge:
And this is an enlargement of the area of interest:
It’s easy to identify the two dragons facing a pearl on the roof ridge, but although I think that scenes from Chinese mythology are being depicted here, I shall have to take a closer look the next time I pass this way. I’ll probably devote an entire post to this temple at some time.

One curious thing about this obviously permanent structure is that when we last came this way just a week ago, we didn’t notice anything. Mind you, at the point where I might have noticed, I’m focused on executing quite a tight U-turn onto the ramp leading up to the footbridge. I wonder how long it will remain brightly coloured.

I crossed the expressway here, even though my intention was to follow the cycle track, because the first time I came this way, it took me more than five minutes to cross Ho Sheung Heung Road, which carries a lot of traffic. And I could follow a seldom used path and re-cross the expressway about 800 metres further on and thus avoid this obstruction. I believe that few of the many recreational cyclists who now come this way are aware of this dodge.

My intention in following the new cycle track was twofold. First, I wanted to avoid the frontier road, because I’d become fed up dodging all the potholes caused by massive, fully laden tipper trucks hauling material for the new science park. Second, I wanted to see whether there were any worthwhile diversions off the cycle track.

At one point, I spotted a narrow lane that wound away up a hill, which I simply had to check out. It led, eventually, to a T-junction with a road that I recognized immediately. It was ‘the mountain road’, which we’ve started to follow on the way back to Fanling to avoid the frontier road, despite there being a couple of quite gruelling hills. I could have followed this backwards to the village of Chau Tau, because it’s all downhill, but I wanted to see whether there were any more potential diversions from the cycle track. For a start, I was able to follow a different road on my way back to the cycle track, but there were no further diversions before I reached the only way into Chau Tau. There is another road connecting this large village with the outside, but it’s one-way leading out! Before heading further west, we always do a circuit around the village, and I took this photo of bougainvillea where a narrow path crosses Chau Tau South Road, part of the one-way exit from the village:
Next on the itinerary was Lok Ma Chau Road, which leads to a major crossing point into China. We always avoided this road in the past, but the crossing has been closed since the start of the covid-19 pandemic, so traffic has been very sparse here. I next followed Tunafish Road and Psycho Road, both of which lead to unmanned crossing points and, at the moment, carry almost no traffic. A word about the nomenclature here: the first road is actually named Tun Yu Road, but yu is Cantonese for ‘fish’; and the second is named Sai Kwo Road, so I simply removed one phoneme.

I then followed San Tin Tsuen Road, which loops around the historic village of San Tin, separating it from a large area of fish ponds that are still in use. I took several photos of bougainvillea along this road:
As usual, the colours are subdued when I’m pointing towards the sun, so I took a couple of photos from the other side:
The next photo was taken further along this road:
…while this is a photo of bougainvillea that is some distance away:
The buildings in the distance are in Shenzhen.

When I reached the end of San Tin Tsuen Road, I needed to cross Castle Peak Road if I wanted to continue further west. However, while I waited for an opportunity to cross this extremely busy traffic artery, I witnessed/experienced one of the most egregious examples of stupidity that I’ve ever seen. A school minibus from the left had stopped, because, I assumed, the driver wanted to turn right, and I was in his way. However, a truck pulled out to overtake the minibus. But that wasn’t the stupidity. A car pulled out to overtake the truck! Fortunately, I saw what was happening, and even though I was behind the give-way line, I quickly pulled back further. And once the truck and car had passed, I quickly crossed in front of the minibus, bumped up the kerb and rejoined the cycle track.

If I’d wanted to head to the Tam Mei valley, which I’ve been exploring during the past few months, I could cross the cycle track and follow a subway under the expressway to Shek Wu Wai Road, which leads via yet another steep hill and the PLA’s Tam Mei Barracks to that destination. However, my plan was to follow the cycle track west to see whether there were any potential alternative routes. After about a kilometre, the cycle track crosses yet another road, so I turned left there to see whether the road led anywhere interesting. Curiously, this is a concrete road, which leads me to suspect that it was built originally by the British military. It went a long way, but it eventually came to an end. However, at this point, there was an extremely rough dirt track that I was bound to want to follow. This too went a long way, and at one point the surface changed from dirt to concrete. I just had time to think that there must be a way out when I found myself in a huge concreted area:
This is a closer view of the graves:
It’s unusual to see six graves alongside each other like this. In fact, it’s so unusual that when I showed Paula the photo, she immediately expressed an interest in seeing the site for herself. This interest persisted even when I told her how difficult the dirt track was—it crosses two badly weathered rock outcrops, and the uphill crossing on the way back (there really is no other way out) is both loose and steep.

I did think that I would have to backtrack all the way to the cycle track, but I’d spotted an alternative when I stopped for a drink on the ride in. It wasn’t a path, just a concrete ledge running along a small storm drain, but it did look feasible. I remember thinking as I rode along it what would happen if I came to grief here, surrounded by impenetrable vegetation. When I called the emergency services, how would I explain where I was?

However, although I had to cross three smaller drains, each about 30cm across, where I deemed it prudent to stop and lift my bike across, this impromptu route eventually led back to the start of Shek Wu Wai Road. My next objective was ‘the humdinger’, which I originally followed as a way to reach San Tin but hadn’t done since the Lok Ma Chau border crossing closure. First, I would have to reach Ka Lung Road, which leads to San Tin Barracks and from where this entertaining segment starts.

I knew that there was a path running alongside the expressway, and although it leads to a huge industrial yard, that had never been a problem in the past. However, although I could find a way through, there was a line of trucks more than 100m long waiting, presumably, to have their cargoes unloaded. When I did finally reach the road, I noticed more trucks waiting their turns to enter the yard, but I was going in the other direction, so I thought no more about it.

Not having been this way for a while though, I misidentified a side road beyond which the start of the humdinger couldn’t be and assumed therefore that it was now blocked by new industrial development. However, this was an opportunity to check out some of the other roads on the east side of Ka Lung Road. The first one I followed ended with a short path, and when I followed that, I found myself in a location I recognized immediately. It was part of a link between the road over Ki Lun Shan Au (aka Saddle Pass) and Ka Lung Road that we used to follow on ‘journey to the west’.

I decided to follow it in the direction of the former. Between the two roads, there is a canalized stream with DSD access paths on both sides, so I decided to follow one side downstream until I reached Kwu Tung Road, even though our original route merely crossed the stream and continued down an exit path on the far side. However, when I reached the main road, I found that it was clogged with traffic, so I simply followed the DSD access path on the other side of the stream until it came to an end, where I was surprised to discover what appeared to be a newly constructed path that started with quite a steep ramp. Naturally, I followed it and was surprised to find myself on another path I recognized.

Wherever it was possible, I’d developed journey to the west so that there were two separate paths between two given points. The path I’d originally taken was part of the return journey, while this one, which I described in Journey to the West as ‘the link path’, was followed on the outward part of the ride. I followed it backwards until I reached the road that leads over the pass, although I decided to follow the road in the opposite direction on this occasion. This blaze of colour hit me as I rounded a bend:
I thought it was worth a closer shot:
When I finally reached Kwu Tung Road, I found that it was still clogged with slow-moving traffic. I could have turned back the way I’d just come, but there was another option. All the major roads in the New Territories have pavements, even in the countryside, where they are never used by pedestrians. Although I would never cycle on a pavement in an urban area, I no longer have any scruples about doing so in this kind of situation, especially when I could travel faster than the traffic on the road!

When I finally reached the junction with Ka Lung Road, I discovered the reason for the congestion: it was the queue of big trucks waiting to have their cargoes unloaded that I referred to earlier. The jam had grown so large that the police were now on the case. And I had another dilemma: how to reach the cycle track. It was only about 150 metres away, but Kwu Tung Road crosses the expressway here before joining Castle Peak Road, and I wasn’t sure that there was a pavement on the bridge.

So I decided to follow Ka Lung Road while I worked out what to do next. I could pass through San Tin Barracks—all I would need to do was show my ID card to the sentries at the gate—but as I cycled along, I spotted the signpost to Siu Hum Tsuen and realized my earlier error. This was the start of ‘the humdinger’, which would be the perfect solution to my problem. This is a photo from that link:
Unfortunately, this option didn’t work out. The first part of this segment is still open, but just before the route reaches ‘the snake path’, I encountered a gate across the path. I had no option but to turn back. I tried following the original snake path backwards, but it is now so hopelessly blocked by vegetation and collapsed sections of path that I no longer recognized it.

When I re-emerged onto Ka Lung Road, I spotted this almost perfectly round tree:
This tree is a common sight on sections of journey to the west, and the blossom that appears at this time of year is extremely aromatic. There are also a lot of graves and ossuaries along this road, all of which are on the east side of the road, presumably to enhance the fung shui by facing west. You can see some of them in the photo.

And I still hadn’t solved the problem of how to reach the cycle track. I decided to try my luck in the industrial yard, with its seemingly endless queue of waiting trucks. Luckily, I was able to find a way through without getting in anyone’s way. Once on the cycle track, I first backtracked along San Tin Tsuen Road then headed home, but I wasn’t finished yet.

I turned off at Dill’s Corner, because I fancied doing the ‘serendipity’ alleyways in the opposite direction. I took this photo at the end/beginning of ‘serendipity #2’ and the beginning/end of ‘serendipity #3’, where the route crosses Ma Tso Lung Road:
Instead of following the usual route, I detoured onto the section of ‘serendipity #4’ that leads independently to Ho Sheung Heung Road. I hadn’t intended to do ‘serendipity #6’, but the start of this alleyway is just a few metres from the end of #4, and I hadn’t done it for such a long time, so I thought: “Why not?”

When this diversion finally re-emerges onto Ho Sheung Heung Road, it is at the bottom of a tough hill that we join halfway up if we’ve been following the mountain road, but I wanted to go this way because I can safely break the speed limit (50km/hr) down the other side (no side roads from which someone can unexpectedly emerge).

I was now back on the new cycle track, but I had one last diversion that I wanted to try: ‘farmland fandango’ backwards. If you watch the video, there are four outstanding examples of bougainvillea here. I didn’t stop to photograph the first three, but this is the last (or the first if you’re riding in the established direction—the route passes to the right of the house):
After a short road section, I could simply follow the established cycle track network to get home. The only hills are the exit ramps from subterranean cycle track interchanges, but otherwise everything is nice and flat. It was almost 5 o’clock by the time I reached home. I’d managed to clock 92km during the course of the day, and the best adventure I’d had for quite some time ended with a couple of cold beers.

Saturday, 6 March 2021

what is going on?

Back in December, I posted an account of the destruction that was likely to be caused by construction of an alleged ‘bypass’ that appeared to be slated to run alongside our local river. This project is clearly part of the planned development of the area between Ma Sik Road, which marks the current eastern boundary of Fanling, and the river.

Ten years ago, most of this area was being cultivated by enterprising ‘farmers’, but it is in fact owned by a major property developer, Henderson Land. However, the company began the process of clearing the land at that time, evicting the farmers and fencing off the cultivated areas, which in the intervening years became heavily overgrown. Although building work started on one small patch of land close to Ma Sik Road a couple of years ago, it is only in the past couple of months that machinery has moved in to clear the rest of the area.

I assume that this move is linked to the commencement of work on the ‘Fanling Bypass Eastern Section’, which I reported on in my December post, but this is an account of just one small part of that work. On 13th December, I decided to walk along the track on the opposite side of the river to the Drainage Services Department (DSD) access road, which we use when cycling anywhere west of Fanling, to take a closer look at developments on that side of the river. I took the following photo:
“Wow!” I thought. “They’re going to build a bridge across the river.”

I had thought that the proposed bypass would simply follow the DSD access road as far as the road bridge that you can see on the right of the photo, but perhaps I was wrong!

Over the following weeks, I took a photo every time I walked or cycled along the DSD access road, and I thought that I would post a selection here, without comments, to allow readers to try to guess just what is going on. Each photo is captioned with the date it was taken:
19th December 2020.

24th December 2020.

2nd January 2021.

6th January 2021.

7th January 2021.

13th January 2021.

18th January 2021.

18th January 2021.

19th January 2021.

20th January 2021.

21st January 2021.

23rd January 2021.

25th January 2021.

3rd February 2021.

14th February 2021.

27th February 2021.

There haven’t been any further extensions to this project since the platform that first appeared on 3rd February, but two drilling rigs have been operating here for the past few weeks, and there does seem to have been quite a lot of activity during this period, which implies that something will be built here. But what?
*  *  *
For more details of what has happened in the area owned by Henderson Land during the past decade, check out these links:
Turf Wars
A Blot on the Landscape
Turf Wars Update