Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Long Awaited Winter


Winter has come back to the nearby mountains. Even a few leaves remaining on the trees are ready to drop when the chill wind blows across the ridges. Winter is the best season for hikers and trekkers in Korea.  They are happy to walk along the path on the ridge again, feeling cold one year since last year.

When the scorching heat wave hit the country last summer, it felt like those sticky summer nights will last forever! Global warming has already affected our environment in a lot of ways. Summer becomes the toughest season of the year in Korea. Personally, winter is preferrable, because one can walk nearly any time of day without sweating.

Anyway, it certainly feels like winter has arrived again!!! Enjoy the moment now, nobody will get this moment back.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Snow Covered Scenery

Once again, I return to the blogspot for a long time. The autumn had passed and the winter has aleady come. We had snow a couple of times this year, they say this winter feels colder than before. The snow also fell on the railway and the rice field harvested during last autumn. The photo was taken somewhere around Gyeongju 경주, the antient capital of Shilla dynasty.

This single track railway form Gyeongju to Busan 부산 was built in 1935 by Japanese during the colonial period. I walked along the railway track. Cold winds blow across the fields, touching my face. A few minutes later, I heard the horns far away and then the train was approaching from behind. I stepped aside for a while to see the train passing. The train journey is well worth considering for its winter scenery in Korea.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Drag Your Bike


Bicycling on weekends becomes recently another pleasure in life for the avid cyclists. Going up or down the new cycling path along the river makes us feel like that we are on an adventure. Most parts of the path are flat and accessible to all bike riders, but it has some very steep section near Hapcheon weir 합천보, which starts at the entrance of Musimsa 무심사 (Mind free) Buddhist temple. This section covering a distance of about 3km has been famous for its steep trail among two wheelers since the path was opened.

The road goes up zigzag over a mountain behind the temple, and down on the opposite side. The path near the top of the mountain offers a beautiful view of river, village and fields. The road can be so dangerous for those going down, so several warning notices along the path say "Danger", "Slow",or "Drag your bike".

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Cross-Country Riverside Cycling Road

Korean avid cyclists are so happy to celebrate completion of the cross-country riverside cycling roads along 4 major rivers across South Korea. 1757km (1092 Miles) is the total length of the cycling road network, which has been created by 4 major rivers restoration project.

This riverside cycling path can be seen around Daegu 대구 city partly surrounded by Nakdong river 낙동강. To the west of Daegu located Gangjeong weir 강정보, which is the largest in size among 16 weirs of the four rivers. Dalseong weir 달성보 is to the south, and Chilgog weir 칠곡보 to the north. Every weir is connected to each other by the cycling road, which is well paved either inside or on the riverbanks.

The environmentalists have always argued that 4 major rivers restoration project including this riverside cycling road unintentionally destroys the nature of the rivers, not restoring or conserving it. The government, however, consistently insists that the project has aimed to restore and conserve the rivers eco-friendly. Anyway, the project was finally completed last month. Time will settle the arguement.


I have ever riden a bike several times to 3 weirs as Gangjeong, Dalseong and Chilgog. The path is mostly smooth with only a few ascents or descents. The fresh and cool wind always blows across the river, touching my face. One spot between Dalseong and Chilgog is still under construction, so the cyclists have to take a detour. Rest rooms and benchs with shade are found occasionally along the two wheeler road. You can make a pit stop in the control office attached to each weir, and cv stores are opened for visitors in some weir control offices.

Monday, March 05, 2012

Back to the Past

Hahoe village 하회마을 near Andong 안동 city is one of the most visited touristic places in middle eastern part of the peninsula, which is famous for its traditional and historical value. Hahoe means spinning river. In fact, the Nakodong river turns around the village in a horseshoe shape. The photo above was taken from atop the height named Buyongdae 부용대 across the river, located to the north of the folk village.
With the rapid industrialization and westernization in South Korea, the old and tradiational cultural heritage has not been valuable so much as the economic development, so that it has been sometimes ignored and forgotten. But some villages as Hahoe have been fortunately remained  untouched by development and modernization, Hahoe is one of the unique and interesting places that history, culture and tradition have been conserved well in South Korea. It is worth a visit.

This village has been designated by UNESCO as World Heritage Site in 2010.