Advertisement

Woman Known as ‘Bikini Hiker' Freezes to Death on Mountain After Falling Down Cliff

Gigi Wu would typically hike mountains in normal gear and only change into her bikini when she made it to the top.

by Mack Lamoureux
Jan 22 2019, 7:43pm

This article originally appeared on VICE Canada.

An Instagram star known as the “Bikini Hiker”—who was famous for her bikini-clad mountaintop photos—froze to death after falling down a 65-foot ravine earlier this week.

Gigi Wu, a 36-year-old Taiwanese woman, died this week when hiking the Batongguan Historic Trail in Yushan National Park in Taiwan. During her hike, Wu fell down the ravine and survived her injuries. However, she wasn’t able to move and was trapped at the bottom of the gorge. Wu made a distress call on a satellite phone and told her friends she couldn’t move her lower half but was able to get rescuers her coordinates.

The weather turned bad, however, and the rescue plan was hindered—instead of using a helicopter they had to set out on foot. Eventually, 43 hours after her initial fall, Wu’s body was located. According to the news outlet Focus Taiwan, Wu died on Monday and it’s believed the cause of death was hypothermia.

To be clear, there is absolutely no indication that Wu was wearing a bikini at the time of her fall or that her bikini-wearing had anything to do with her death. Interviews with Wu paint a picture of an experienced hiker who made her way up over 100 mountains in full hiking gear before changing into a bikini at the top. When asked why she did so, she said it was simply for the pure beauty of it all.

The mountaintop photos began after she had lost a bet to a friend a few years ago. The snaps started to gain traction online and Wu grew her following to over 20,000 followers. Her last photo on top of a mountain was posted on January 9 of this year.

The Taiwanese woman is far from the only adventure influencer to be killed in the midst of doing what they love. Last year, a Canadian described as a stunt rapper died when shooting a music video and two other adventure Instagram stars and YouTubers died after jumping into a river to save a friend.

Aside from influencers, a study found that there has been over 259 “selficide” deaths since from October 2011 to November 2017. Just last week a California couple who were known for their daring photos died after seemingly falling off a Yosemite cliff.

Wu’s Facebook page has since been turned into a memorial for the woman. People from across the world have flocked to her page to pay tribute to the Bikini Hiker and praise her way of life.

Sign up for our newsletter to get the best of VICE delivered to your inbox daily.

Follow Mack Lamoureux on Twitter.