University Student Missing on Mount Jade

A 21 year old man is missing in snowy conditions after slipping and falling while attempting to reach the peak of Taiwan’s highest mountain, Mt Jade ( 玉山; Yù Shān).

Search and rescue teams have been scouring the area in snowy and foggy conditions but have yet to find any trace of the man.

The student of National Taiwan Sport University set out to climb the summit Friday morning February 19 with a group of friends. National Park authorities advised the group against attempting to reach the peak due thick snow and bad weather. Three of the group heeded their advice, while the missing student and one other decided to continue. They were 100 meters from the 3,952 m peak when he slipped and fell into a 1, 000 meter deep ravine.

Yesterday, search and rescue teams were working in below 10 meter visibility trying to find the man. Snow on the mountain is more than 30 centimeters thick.

Mt Jade is not only the highest peak in Taiwan, it is also the tallest mountain in Northeast Asia. While Taiwan enjoys a tropical to subtropical climate, its mountainous terrain also provides alpine conditions. The island’s close proximity to the Eurasian landmass also subjects it to cold fronts driven by high pressure systems formed over Siberia.

A search and rescue team climbing a steep slope in snow on Mount Jade in Taiwan
A search and rescue team works in difficult terrain and harsh weather in an attempt to find a man who fell while attempting to reach the summit of Mount Jade in Taiwan February 2016. Photo credit: 玉管處
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