Visitors must register for ‘world’s most dangerous hike’ in China after death plunge

Police appeal for information about the man, whose fall was captured on video

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 July, 2018, 4:42pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 31 July, 2018, 12:25am

A popular tourist attraction in northwest China has a new policy requiring all visitors wanting to do a cliff-side mountain climb to register, after a man fell to his death from the trail last week.

It came after police appealed for information about the man, whose fall in Huashan National Park in Shaanxi province was captured on video, The Beijing News reported on Sunday.

Police have been unable to track down the man’s family to claim his body, which was found on Friday, because they could not identify him, the report said.

A video posted online shows the man unleashing his safety harness and plunging from the section of the Huashan trail where hikers negotiate narrow wooden planks installed along the cliff face.

Media reports have described the precipitous walk – on the east side of Huashan’s southern peak – as the “world’s most dangerous hiking trail”. Visitors must rent safety harnesses which they attach to guide ropes that run along the section of cliff. The path, which is about 30cm in places, leads to a teahouse built on the mountain some 2,160 metres (7,086 feet) up.

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A park employee told the newspaper that a black bag had been found in the luggage storage facility that is believed to have belonged to the man.

“It just had water and snacks in it, there’s no ID or even a park ticket in it,” the staff member was quoted as saying.

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Police also checked the park’s security footage but said the man appeared to have been on his own at the mountain. They are now trying to use DNA matching to identify the man and have asked anyone who might be related to him to come forward and provide a DNA sample to police.

The hiking trail has been closed since the incident and the park employee told the newspaper that, as well as the registration requirement, it would put more staff in place to try to improve safety.

Huashan, which has long had religious significance in China, is considered one of the country’s “five great mountains”.