This blog was created for USASTRATCOM Long Lines Battalion Army personnel who served in Taiwan during the 1965-72 time frame. Specifically, those who lived and worked in and around Taipei are the target. If you worked at the Grass Mountain or Gold Mountain facilities or anywhere in downtown Taipei, we would like to hear from you. All are welcome to visit and contribute to this blog. Your comments and pictures are encouraged.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

McCauley Beach, Taipei, Taiwan, 1969

It was hard to believe that following the main road through Yangmingshan would lead to the beach. We drove there once just to make sure the road would take us there.

In the fall of 2010, someone posting their photos on Google Earth had followed the entire route from Taipei, up the mountain, past Yangmingshan, and all the way to what was McCauley Beach. Just follow all the little blue blocks.

Although neither of us is a sun person to any great degree, I insisted we go to the beach and  swim in the ocean. Once was enouugh. The place was practically deserted and my sunburn was one of the worst in my life. 

Back in 1969, this waterfall was no big deal. It was just a natural drop near the Grass Mountain Hostel. Now, it can be found in many Taiwan brochures. 
YangMing Road is just the new name for the road from Taipei through Yangmingshan.

Following Route 2 (With a Chinese character after it) would take you to McCauley Beach.
 Route 2 is also YangJin Road and it's hard to follow at times, but it persists. 

Here it glides past the hostel.
An intersection awaits. At the right is Chiang Kai Shek's summer complex. It used to be heavily guarded.

We could tell when he was there as all vehicles coming up the hill from Taipei were stopped and searched at night.

It is really a beautiful place and is a must-stop for Wangmingshan National Park visitors.

This gives you a view of the entire complex.
Turn left at the previously shown intersection. This sign welcomes you to the national park. 
YangJin Road begins after the left turn. At the left in this picture is the last section of the education complex.
Along the way was the Seven Star microwave compound.

Notice the spiffy side-view mirrors on the car's fenders.

Around the end of June, 1968, I was in downtown Taipei about 10 p.m. It was time to get back to the Grass Mountain barracks for work the next morning. I told the driver "Yangmingshan" and we ended up on the little road outside Seven Star.

Out came the ROC guard and, eventually a Stratcom soldier. Among the 4 of us, we came up with Grass Mountain as my original destination. Back in the taxi we two went and arrived at the front gate around 2 a.m.

Near Seven Star was this listening site. We didn't know whose it was-- U.S. or ROC.

Here's today's technology at a site about 1/2 mile south and east of our Grass Mountain site.
Somewhere out there is McCauley Beach.

Along the road was some kind of mine.
Here's the beach, and I was floored to see that it was segregated. In the summer of 1969, there was an old dark red snow fence which bisected the beach.

The sign at the beach entrance had an arrow pointed to the left. To paraphrase, it was for officers and civilians of equivalent rank.

The other arrow pointing to the right was for us enlisted folk and guests. The fence wobbled all the way down into the water.

By the time the Dawgflight guys from Shu Linkou AFB went there a year or so later, the snow fence was replaced with a more sturdy symbol.
And, we were all paid well.


  1. The route in the second image is Route 2A(2甲), also called YangJin Road, which means Yangmingshan-Jinshan road. Jingshan(金山) is a town nearby the McCauley Beach.

    The building in the fifth image is actually the Chung Shan Hall(中山樓) on Yangmingshan.

    And this is the summer house of CKS.

  2. Thanks,Victor. When it comes to the specifics, you are always the person who has the information. John

  3. the fence on the beach came about to kept a adm dau who like some of us young enlistee. one of the younger tape apes a 17 year old pfc was found in bed with a senior nco dau and was given order for nam on his 18th bday but it made it back in 69 I was a tty repairman station there 7/67-5/70 and again from 10/76 untill that damm peanut farmer had us leave my name is Sam Christopher kept mostly to myself

    1. Hello Sam; Bill Paden here. Was at
      Grass Mountain with you.

  4. Hey, Sam! I think I knew you from TTY repair. Tall, wore glasses and a mustache? Did you take a DC-4 or 5 repair trip to Kinmen? Do names like John Chapa, Eric White, Bill Payden, and Sammy Cunningham mean anything to you? Sure would like to see your pictures from then as well as your memories of GM and Taipei.


    1. Hey John; At Grass Mountain from 1967 thru 1969. Bill Paden here. YES I remember Sam Cunningham, Eric White.

  5. The fence segregating officer and enlisted ranks on McCauley Beach was in place 1967-69. My older brother Sean reminded me that the American kids on both sides of the fence both ignored it and, upon occasion, knocked it down.