Tragedy in Taiwan – Bikini Climber Dies on a Solo Hike

Mridu Walia - Mechanical Engineering
Posted on: February 3, 2019

A 36-year-old Taiwanese mountain climber, Gigi Wu, plummeted to her death during a solo hiking trip in the mountains of Taiwan. She was popularly known as the “Bikini Climber”; although she would climb mountains in proper hiking gear, she would change into a bikini to pose for pictures at the top. In a recent interview with the local channel FTV, Gigi claimed to have hiked over 100 mountains in the last four years. When she was asked the reason behind it, she said, “It’s so beautiful. What’s not to like?”

Reportedly, Gigi Wu was in the middle of a 25-day solo hiking trip through the mountains in Taiwan. On Monday, January 21, 2019, Gigi was hiking Yushan Mountain in Central Taiwan. She was involved in an accident while she was hiking the mountain, and she fell 20-30 metres (approximately 100 ft) into a ravine. She sustained major injuries which made it impossible for her to move or get help. As she was stranded in the ravine, she successfully used a satellite phone to inform her friends about the accident, who contacted emergency services.

Bad weather conditions made it impossible for rescuers to deploy a helicopter to airlift Gigi from the site of the accident. A search and rescue team of six emergency responders was dispatched by the Nantou Fire Department to search for Gigi. By the time the rescuers found her body by the ravine, it had been over 28 hours. The temperatures had dropped below the freezing point overnight, and sadly, by the time the rescue team arrived at the coordinates provided by Gigi, she had passed away. According to reports from Apple Daily, she had no signs of life when the search and rescue team found her. The actual cause of her death is undetermined, i.e. whether it was due to the injuries she sustained; however, authorities are speculating that she died of hypothermia.

On Friday, December 28, 2018, Gigi shared a picture of her legs after a hiking accident. She had scrapes and bruises all over her legs after slipping off a cliff. Gigi was popular on social media and had over 14,000 followers according to reports from Taiwan’s Central News Agency (CNA). When the news spread about her falling into the ravine, her fans and followers poured their blessings and wishes in the comments section of her hiking pictures wishing for her “safe return” from this disaster. Once the news of her death broke out, her Facebook page was converted into a memorial page to allow her followers to visit her profile to remember and celebrate her memory. They offered their condolences and expressed their grief on her final post.

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