2018 / October
Cathy Teng /photos courtesy of Lin Min-hsuan /tr. by Jonathan Barnard
In 2018, a partly finished national-level hiking trail that stretches more than 400 kilometers was given its official name: the Raknus Selu Trail. Running through Hakka communities near Provincial Highway 3, it has been stitched together from old trails, farming roads, and narrow hiking paths. This area used to be covered with native camphor wood forests. When the Han Chinese pioneers first entered these mountains to cut the camphor trees, they ended up creating an industry that would earn Taiwan the moniker “kingdom of camphor.” The industry would connect Taiwan to the global shipping routes of the 19th century.