The MacLehose is Hong Kong’s most iconic hiking trail, stretching almost 100km across the New Territories. The final four sections, like the rest, offer varied and beautiful trails. Section 7 – 7km, estimated time to complete: two to three hours Start section 7 by walking along the concrete path with Shing Mun Reservoir on your left, eventually crossing over its long dam. Turn right, up the steep hill and you will soon see a wooden arch saying “MacLehose Trail (Stage Seven)”. This is the start of Needle Hill, one of the most notorious climbs on the whole 100km route. Hiking the MacLehose: a guide to sections 1, 2 and 3 – iconic dams, stunning beaches and mountains After a lung-busting slog to the top, you will see much of the MacLehose from section 4 to 8 behind and in front of you. Descend down the other side of Needle Hill to a long concrete path. There are two forks in the road; take the right turn both times. Eventually you will almost reach the top of Grassy Hill before taking a sharp left turn off the concrete path, onto a steep downhill trail surrounded by trees. It meets a concrete path again – turn left. There is a horseshoe bend in the road turning back on itself. Then you arrive at Lead Mine Pass with a toilet and pavilion. On the other side of the pavilion, up some stairs, section 8 starts. Or you can continue on the concrete path via the Wilson Trail back to the reservoirs. Hiking the MacLehose: a guide to sections 4, 5 and 6 – from Ma On Shan panoramas to ‘Monkey Hill’ Section 8 – 10km, three hours Section 8 starts with a long, shaded climb up stone steps. It flattens into a long, undulating trail via large boulders with views of Tai Mo Shan ahead. Eventually, the trail turns into a concrete road that winds up and over Tai Mo Shan, Hong Kong’s highest peak at 957 metres (3,140 feet). The views stretch far into the distance on your left. The concrete path continues to wind down the other side – be careful of cars and cyclists. You can follow it all the way down to Route Twisk, where you will find a kiosk and toilet. The route officially breaks off the road about two-thirds of the way down, back onto a trail that rejoins at Route Twisk. Whether you take the road, or the trail down, section 9 starts on the other side of Route Twisk. Section 9 – 7km, two hours If you followed the road down, turn right on Route Twisk and walk along until you see a left turn, down a slight slope. If you followed the MacLehose all the way to the road, you should see the start of section 9 on the other side of Route Twisk about 10 or 20 metres to your right. Head down the slope and along the wide paved concrete road – once you are on this road it is very simple, just follow the concrete path, ignoring other trails on your left or right. There is a fork in the road, take the left bend. There is another fork in the road farther along, take the right path to Tin Fu Tsai, not the uphill road back to Route Twisk. Stay on the concrete road going straight and not taking any turns (not that there are many). Eventually, you come to another fork. This time, turn left downhill, following the signs to Tin Fu Tsai. Farther down the hill, there is a picnic area and the option for a left turn – follow the road as it curves to the right. The road passes Tin Fu Tsai Campsite, where it arbitrarily turns into Section 10. Section 10 – 15km, four hours Continue along the concrete road as you were before. It is much the same as section 9, you might not even realise you have transitioned sections. Keep going straight, ignoring options to turn off the main concrete road. Eventually, after a small incline, there is a junction. Initially, turn left, then just a few metres along turn left again over a bridge where the road forks. You will come to a wide grassy picnic area. On Google Maps, section 10 continues by turning left at the end of the picnic area, following the shores of Tam Lam Chung Reservoir. But the signs, and the official route continue straight along the concrete road. If you choose to follow the reservoir, you will ultimately end up back on section 10, so the choice is yours. Otherwise, head up the hill. Stick to the concrete path. At the top of a climb, take the left fork. Continue on, over a bridge. Finally, at long last the concrete road turns back into a trail. It undulates through trees, up and down over steps and natural paths. It once again meets a concrete path on a horseshoe turn. Take the left, downhill route. After a while, you will meet some sign posts. If you opted earlier to follow Tam Lam Chung Reservoir, this is where you will come out. There’s another fork after a car barrier. Turn right. The concrete path continues on, hugging the contours of the mountain on your right, with a catchwater on your right. Tuen Mun appears below on your left. Turn left, down the stairs at the big wooden map that says “MACLEHOSE TRAIL”. Take a right at a T-junction, then a left over a bridge. You come out at an underpass, an inauspicious ending to the MacLehose Trail.