Part of the Climbing Walls in QianGuang Temple Crag Collapsed (summer 2018)

37953402_1534715406633900_3112200918351740928_o↑The mining project went on right beside the QianGuang Temple climbing area. The huge pit is about 20 meters deep, a highly possible cause of the collapse of the climbing walls.

There are two major natural cragging areas in Kaohsiung : “QianGuang Temple” and “Shoushan,” the latter being several crags inside of Shoushan National Nature Park. This year, both areas are faced with serious problems from the government and the public.  This article focuses on the current situation of QianGuang Temple. (It is also called “Shoushan crag” sometimes. Do not mix them up! For info on Shoushan crags in the Nature Park, please check another article.)

QianGuang Temple crag is one of the oldest climbing areas in southern Taiwan.  Bolting started in the 1980s, and top rope climbing can be traced to even earlier.  Sadly, this historic crag is now greatly damaged: part of the walls collapsed in early July and about half of the routes there disappeared forever.  The cause of the incident is still under investigation, but it is probably associated with the “mining for lost treasure project” which started in February this year.  It is already not the first mining project near the crag.  According to unverified rumors, Japanese army buried a lot of treasure across Taiwan during their colonization period.  Shoushan is believed to be one of the hot spots and has attracted many treasure hunters. The excavation project was suspended after the walls collapsed.  For the incidence at a glance, please check this page (in Chinese).

38015468_1536103533161754_1625693096320696320_n↑ One of the two affected climbing areas.  Picture before the mining project started.

37917064_1534718579966916_2736347020313755648_o↑The same place during mining.

39217442_513622175743526_4207441428785135616_n↑ The other affected climbing area. Before mining.

37852850_1535721236533317_6701618204172615680_o↑The same place after the collapse. Red rectangular shows approximately where the climbing wall used to be.  Now only the white part on the far right remains.

38040852_1535707666534674_2665937937803247616_o↑A closer look at the same place after collapse.

Reminder: If you are going to climb in QianGuang Temple, please mind that the area belongs to the Armaments Bureau.  The military or the police sometimes show up to ask climbers to leave.  Please hold proper attitude and avoid conflict.

 

Article/Ya-te Chen

Photos/Chun-chung Ho

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