Taiwan is an island, actually a group of islands dominated by the major landmass which has an area roughly equivalent to Wales. Around two-thirds of the main island is mountainous and Yu-shan (Jade mountain, a.k.a. Mt. Morrison) is the highest peak in North East Asia. Indeed there are more than one hundred peaks over 3,000 meters in height in the central mountain range that provides the island’s backbone. On the East Coast these mountains drop off rapidly, sometimes spectacularly, to the Pacific Ocean. On the west the roll-off is more gradual as you descend from alpine moorland through evergreen forests, with trees up to 3000 years old to the stunning waterfalls of the mid higlands and eventually to the western plain that is home to most of the island’s 23 million people. Here agriculture, industry and habitation vie for the limited real estate between the mountains and the sea. The coastline, of course, varies around the island from the coral beaches of the Kending National Park in the South past the coastal wetlands of the West or the shale beeches and drop offs of the East to the fascinating rock formations of Ye-liou in the North.
There are challenges for the landscape photographer, particularly those who favour broad sweep landscape images. In particular there is often a considerable haze over large parts of the island for much of the time. How much of this is natural and how much a result of man-made activity I am unsure. A second issue, which is definitely man-made, is the energy needs of what is the second most densely populated non-citystate territory in the world. This results in a plethora of electricity pylons all over the landscape which restrict the number of large vistas for those who wish to capture the landscape apart from the effects of humanity upon it. However there are still many powerful and beautiful images to be captured.
Subthemes are for the most part self explanatory. The Detail subtheme focuses in close on the minutiae of landscape that are often missed and yet can just as easily reveal the beauty of creation as a sweeping panorama.
Click on a subtheme to explore the images.