About Mount Yushan
Mount Yushan or Jade Mountain is the highest mountain in Taiwan. It consists of five main peaks: the main peak (3952 masl), eastern peak (3869 masl), northern peak (3858 masl), southern peak (3844 masl), and western peak (3467 masl).
One of the famous mountains in Taiwan for the locals and foreign hikers. Before getting an entry permit you must secure your slot at the Paiyun Lodge. The lottery draw is used by the management to secure slots. Draw results were announced 1 month before the date of the hike.
Why I try to hike solo this mountain?
I want to travel back to Taiwan to visit other places I didn’t visit before when I’m working as an ex-pat. Two mountains (Mt. Pulag & Mt. Daraitan) I hiked before I have decided to hike Mount Yushan. The good news is that it is visa-free (Taiwan) and I successfully secure my slot in Paiyun Lodge.
Booked my plane ticket in advance. Search for a route that will take me to the Dongpu Lodge before the day of my hike. I even save the time table of some buses and HSR (high-speed rail) to help in my trip.
Day 1: Going to Dongfu Lodge
I arrived at the Taoyuan International Airport early in the morning. Bought 4G sim and Easycard (for bus payment). Waited till the operation of the bus started.
My long route:
- Ride bus (705) going to Taoyuan HSR.
- Taoyuan HSR to Chiayi HSR.
- Ride shuttle bus (7211/7212) to Chiayi TRA. (note: show your ticket from HSR for a free ride)
- From Chiayi TRA, walk to the other side of the station.
- Ride bus (7322) going to Alishan bus station.
- From Alishan bus station, ride the bus (6739) and drop at Tatajia bus stop.
While walking, bad luck came when the temperature is dropping. I didn’t expect a hail storm is coming. Even I have my raincoat my bags and shoes are wet. Submitted my permit to the Yushan National Park and Police station then afterward go to the Dongpu Lodge. I paid for my reservation and have a rest.
Day 2: Hike to Paiyun Lodge
At Dongfu Lodge I met the group of Jeffrey Arias and joined them. Walk to the Yushan National Park to submit their permit and the staff offered me to stored my other bag with them. Then they submitted their permit to the Police station.
From the park, there is around a 1.2 km distance to the Tataka trailhead. It is advisable to ride a van (100NT$ per person) going to the Tataka trailhead.
Total of 8.2 km From Tataka trailhead to the Paiyun Lodge. You can reach the lodge in approximately 4 to 6 hours depending on your physical fitness.
The trail was well maintained and easy to follow. Every 500 meters there is a trail marker.
At last, we reached the Paiyun Lodge(3,402 masl).
Day 3: The summit
We woke up around 2 AM. Prepare our things and eat our breakfast. Before we begin our hike, we prayed for guidance and safety for our journey to the summit.
The first part of the trek was alright for me. I could walk with the group easily. When I feel the air was thin due to the high altitude I started to breathe slowly. Maybe because of altitude sickness.
The hard part came when I went for the final ascent. It was very cold. I felt my hands were numbed. All of the hikers who reached the top started to go down which is passing my way. So I need to wait for all of them so that I can pass on the way to the summit using the metal chains.
I’m very thankful for reaching the top of the summit. First time to do the solo international climb. Although it was foggy at the peak when I take photos.
Online application site for park permit: https://npm.cpami.gov.tw/en/index.aspx
Yushan National Park Headquarters Park Entry Service Unit No: +886-49-2348209
Dongpu Lodge: http://dongpu.mmweb.tw/
Dongpu Lodge no: 0492702213
*once you secure a slot in Paiyun Lodge you can ask the park entry service unit to book/reserved a slot for you in Dongpu Lodge
JM Saguil – for his DIY guide
Group of Jeffrey Arias – for joining them
Taiwanese guy at the parking area (Shangdongfu) – for dropping me at Alishan bus station (i forgot to get his name).
I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.Philippians 4:13
Nathaniel Amoyen is co-founder of Joanathx. Full-time ex-pat worker at day and writer at night.