A dried-up riverbed above the Paiyun Lodge in Yushan National Park is pictured yesterday. Photo copied by Hsieh Chieh-yu, Taipei Times
By Hsieh Chieh-yu and Kayleigh Madjar / Staff reporter, with staff writer
Even the nation’s tallest mountain has not been spared from a water shortage, with the Yushan National Park Administration Office yesterday providing three tips on how to conserve water as stores dry up.
Millions visit the park every year, many of whom stay in one of its 16 lodges and use the rainwater collected in their storage tanks, which hikers often jokingly call “lifesaving water.”
However, as the worst shortage in decades continues to ravage central Taiwan, the water supply at Paiyun Lodge （排雲山莊） — the only accommodation on the popular main peak hike — has already dried up, the office said.
The lodge is now using a diesel generator to pump in water from the upper reaches of the Nanzihsian River （楠梓仙溪）, it said.
The Central Gold Mine Cabin （中央金礦山屋） also has no water left, and is similarly pumping in water from the nearby Laonong River （荖濃溪）, it added.
All of the park’s other lodges are running dangerously low on water, highlighting the urgent need to conserve what is left, the office said, proposing three tips for hikers.
First, it recommended consuming 30ml of water per 1kg of body weight daily, which would work out to 1.8 liters for a person weighing 60kg.
As hiking is a strenuous activity, the office also suggested preparing at least double the recommended amount of water to ensure there is enough for the entire trip.
Second, people should pack food that requires little water and little energy to prepare, it said.
Third, hikers should be sure to familiarize themselves with the status of water sources along their route, the office said.
If the route goes through an area without a water source, people should add a stop to their itinerary in advance to reduce the risk of any issues, the office added.
Last, the office asked everyone to work together to conserve water to make it through this difficult time.