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Hiker falls to his death while climbing Taiwan's tallest mountain

Group set out to climb Yushan via the Batongguan Historic Trail Saturday morning

(Nantou County Fire Bureau photo)

(Nantou County Fire Bureau photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A male hiker fell to his death on Saturday (Sept. 10) while climbing Yushan, the tallest mountain in Taiwan.

Nantou County Fire Bureau said in a press release that it received a call at 10:42 a.m. on Saturday to report a hiking accident near Yunlong Waterfall in Xinyi Township, Nantou County. The bureau said that a group of seven hikers set out to climb Yushan, which has an elevation of 3,952 m (12,966 ft) above sea level, via the Batongguan Historic Trail on Saturday morning.

They went into the mountains from the Dongpu trailhead at 8 a.m. on Saturday and planned to go down the mountain to the Tataka area on Monday, CNA reported.

However, a 45-year-old male group member surnamed Huang (黃) went missing from the trail possibly between the 4.1 km and 4.3 km marks near Yunlong Waterfall, and the group called for help, according to the bureau.

A search and rescue team consisting of 16 people from the fire bureau’s Yushan branch, the Dongpu police station, and the Yushan National Park Headquarters was dispatched, the bureau said. At 2:14 p.m., the team arrived at the spot where Huang was suspected to have fallen.

The rescue team used drones to try to locate Huang before rappelling down the mountainside to search for him, the bureau said.

The team reached Huang at the bottom of a river valley at 4:40 p.m after rappelling down 200 meters, but they found the victim had passed away due to skull fractures, CNA reported.

According to CNA, when other group members found Huang, who was trailing behind the group at the time, missing, they called his cell phone and called out his name, but received no response.