Snow caps mountain tops; temps to rise today

The China Post news staff

Snow capped both the Yushan (Mt. Jade) and Hohuanshan (Mt. Collective Happiness) in central Taiwan amid falling temperatures and rising humidity yesterday. But the weather will turn better in most areas today as the continental cold mass continues to weaken. Officials of the Forestry Bureau in central Nantou County said snow started falling on Hohuanshan around noon with cumulative snow reaching 10 centimeters high after five hours. They said there were few travelers to the area due to foul weather in the past two days. However, more cars headed toward the mountain after local media reported new snowfall. Police closed all traffic on the mountain highways by nightfall for safety. But an unspecified number of travelers in 20 vehicles were stranded, forcing them to spend one more day on the mountainous region.

They were arranged to stay at he Pine Snow Building, the largest man-made structure with restaurants and rooms accommodating holidaymakers, at the Hohuanshan area with major peaks 3,400 meters above sea level.

The 3,953-meter Yushan, which already had snow two cm high, saw the falling of snow mixed with rain at around 2:05 p.m. There was more snow until 5 p.m. to raise snow to more than six cm. Forecasters at the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said the temperatures will recover under mostly cloudy weather today as the cold mass will continue diminishing. The mercury will go up to the range of 13 to 21 degrees Celsius in the Greater Taipei area in cloudy weather with a 30-percent chance of raining. The temperatures in central Taiwan will fluctuate between 14 and 22 degrees with a 10-percent chance for rain. In southern Taiwan, the temperatures will move between 15 and 24 degrees in cloudy weather with little chance of rain. The forecasters at the CWB said the weather conditions throughout Taiwan will continue improving tomorrow.