Sunday, 25 October 2015

A Hazy Afternoon At Tseng-wen Reservoir

I had planned on getting another very early start this morning to take a shot overlooking Tseng-wen reservoir from the north with the sun rising off to the left, but... I did a bit of late night cycling on Friday night with Niki and then a bit of early morning work on the other side of Tainan city on the Saturday morning, which left me wanting to just lie down for the afternoon and not bother with the chores until later that evening. That put everything back a bit and meant a late night on Saturday making it impossible to get up early Sunday morning. Never mind.

I picked Niki up at about noon, and we headed off to Tseng-wen reservoir regardless of the late start. There is always plenty to do there. We took the front entrance this time, paid the entry fee of NT$170 and stopped to have a look at the new sluiceway tunnel exit mouths...

Although there are two exit mouths side by side, they are in fact conjoined further back in the mountainside to form one single, sliding tunnel.
There was quite a bit more work going on at the left side tunnel mouth, part of which seemingly involved a frame to hold platforms; perhaps for use in installing fixtures in the roof of the tunnel.
The right side tunnel mouth had its first bit of concrete dressing finished for the facade, with more to follow behind. 
This additional tunnel off further to the left is, I presume, an access tunnel to a gallery looking in on the sluiceway.
The two new sluiceway exit mouths in context; situated above and to the right of one of the original sluiceway exit mouths.
Behind the spillway gates; the reservoir is now almost full with about fifty feet of water resting on the shelf behind the gates.
Myself, by the wall overlooking the spillway shelf.
Niki leaning over the same wall; my motorbike is visible in the background, loaded up with kit for our little day out.
We drove around from the dam toward the second of two elevated pavilions from which I could observe the work on the upstream side of the new sluiceway tunnel...

The sluiceway tunnel's entry mouth will (eventually) be opened up somewhere down there below the waterline.
A pair of floating cranes to lift pipe sections; I daresay that that right there is more money than I made in the past ten years. 
The dredging barge; the flywheel-like thing at the back is connected to a hosepipe which vacuums up sediments from the bottom of the reservoir. This has been going on for years since typhoon Morakot in 2009.
A tugboat dragging another barge carrying what looked like a load of shit - possibly sand and gravel aggregate for use in concrete inside the tunnel. The tugboat was dragging that thing around the floating dredger and toward the new sluiceway construction site.
We carried on past the now fully-equipped and fully-staffed elevated cafe crammed with elderly tourists, and made our way on up to the southern end of the reservoir to join highway 3 up the eastern shore of the reservoir into Chiayi county and the little town of Dapu at the back. We stopped at the 7-11 for a short while and then headed back the way we had came to a little farmer's road I had previously explored at the beginning of the year. I parked the bike and fed the scared, abandoned dogs some beef jerky and we walked down the debris-strewn abandoned little path. Along the way, we could get a decent view of the construction site just south of Dapu and which we had visited briefly a few weeks ago...

The construction site south of Dapu at the back end of Tseng-wen reservoir; one massive pipe section standing in the water with several others lying idle in the background beneath the crane.
We rounded the corner and I found that the previously inaccessible shoreline was now relatively easy to get down to and so we got the boat ready and set off around the bend. There wasn't much purpose to this, except that Niki loves going in the boat and it's a chance to see some eagles or kites and catch brief glimpses of some very large fish...

Niki staring off into the distance following a fishing boat; completely unaware that I was taking pictures of her.
Was she pointing to kites behind me here? Possibly, but I can't remember.
Myself, most likely looking out at one of several very large fish breaking the water's surface every now and again.
Niki doing the same thing; there were quite a few of the cheeky little muckers.
I foolishly thought I might be able to get at least one picture of one of these minor monsters.
No chance, mate.
One of several black kites who circled overhead from time to time to check us out.
This chap went right over my head, leaving me late to spot him.
The construction site with the massive pipe section standing upright to the left and the red and white crane off to the right.
Close up on the pipe section; my rough estimate is that this thing has a diameter of something like eight or nine meters. It is, I believe, to be the first section of a massive pipeline stretching from Dapu at the back of the reservoir all the way to the front of the reservoir close to the new sluiceway; it's function will be to transport sediment from the back to the front of the reservoir where it can be flushed out using the new sluiceway tunnel. Whether this plan will succeed or not, I don't know. 
We got back to shoreline by 5pm and packed up by 5.30pm just as the light was beginning to fail. I gave the poor dogs some more beef jerky before we left (during the whole trip, as is as absolutely typical by now, both Niki and the stray dogs ate far more of my food than I did) and by the time we got back out onto highway 3 it was already dark. After a stop at the 7-11 in Yujing for coffee, we got back to Tainan city at 7.30pm and I immediately got the dogs out for a walk before sorting myself out with a much needed shower. Overall, a good little day out.

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