Monkeys! Monkey, monkey, monkey...I've NEVER been happier!

Ok...so maybe I've been happier before than seeing dozens upon dozens of monkeys in the wild...but if you were to ask any of the locals on that mountain that morning, they would have surly assumed I was out on my first day trip from the insane asylum {and I can't say I have any shame with that!}

Sorry I'll back it up a bit, but seriously, I felt like the little kids in this old Disney video! Day 3 in Kaohsiung was by far the best! I woke up bright and early (and surprisingly due to my excitement, quite bushy tailed as well!) at 7am, and was up, dressed, out of the hostel and ready for some climbing before 8am. Sadly this early bird didn't get the worm though when I realized I was too early to catch the bus to the mountain. Sure I could have waited, or taken a taxi, or many other things, but I already told you I was a ball of excitement and energy, so  I decided at 7:45am that the best thing  to do would be to walk the mile to the base of the mountain (can't lie here, Friday to Sunday I logged  over 25 miles in walking haha). I arrived to the base and after asking a few people to point me in the right direction, I was off!!!
Although I began my hike early in the morning, I do live in Taiwan, and I don't care if they claim it's "fall" right now...it's still HOT! {Also side note, I only had my phone...no water, no snacks...just my phone...you are advised againt bringing  anything as the monkeys enjoy trying to take food from unsuspecting hikers...next time I'll bring water and a hiking stick!} As I began my adventure up a trailhead that  began next to a large temple, I began to get discouraged after the first 30 minutes or so as there were no monkeys, I couldn't see the view past the trees, there were no monkeys, there were more people than I was expecting, and there were no monkeys! As the discouragement began to set in though, next thing I know I came  to a built in clearing and was welcomed by this view...


Oh my goodness, BEAUTIFUL!!!


{Here's a panoramic from later, up closer to the top}
Ok, that was enough to motivate me...time to continue climbing! But still, alas, no monkeys. I walked further on, and the amount of people walking began to diminish the further I went up, and  I was close to an hour of hiking when I saw another clearing up ahead...and guess what?!?! I saw a monkey...actually 3 monkeys...and I thought I was in heaven and began taking pictures. As I was taking pictures though I head a noise above me and looked up...MORE MONKEYS!!! I looked around wondering why no one else in the clearing was looking at these monkeys and realized....THERE WERE MONKEYS EVERYWHERE!!!! Mommies, daddies, babies....so many monkeys!!!

Just in time for monkey bath time!
And of course I asked a lovely lady to take a couple pictures of me and the monkeys {ok, I'll be honest, I asked about 5 lovely ladies and maybe another 5 lovely men to take my picture with them! I would get a picture with a cute monkey and turn around and find an even CUTER one and need another picture!}


After way longer than I would like to admit I pulled myself away from the monkeys (in case you are wondering at this point, these monkeys are a  rare species called the Formosan Rock Macaque that are found usually only in Taiwan) and continued my journey up the mountain.

It was about this point in my trip where the scene behind me is where I came from and on the right is where I was to be going that the George of the Jungle theme song started playing loudly in my head. 
Before reaching the top the amount of people I passed slowed to almost none, the obviously paths faded away, and my hands were rapidly becoming a necessity in my climb. Shorting before I reached the top (which sadly you were unable to see any views from because of the trees) I arrived at the place shown in this video below!


After reaching the top I turned around and started my climb down hoping and praying I would remember my way back to where I had seen so many monkeys! I began to have hope again when I looked ahead of me on the trail and saw this...
Look closely there's 3!
And then it happened.....MORE MONKEYS!!! (and of course so many more pictures!)

Tooo stinkin' cute!

The lady taking the picture had a good laugh at this one when he almost stepped on me after deciding he had had enough of posing for the camera. 

and last but not least...my favorite picture from the trip...