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Published: June 30th 2011
Serroksan National Park - The Start
Serroksan National Park - The Start Ulsan Bawi
It’s time for my second blog entry, don’t worry I’m not going to keep telling you the number of my blog entry each time I write one, this will be the last time I do it I promise, but come on it’s still a bit of a novelty for me.
After leaving Seoul in perfect sunshine with the temperature at 30 degree’s complete with clear skies I was relieved the rain had made an exit from the scene, however it also made me realise that carrying my rucksack through hot cities is going to be bloody hard work, it’s so heavy and I have a feeling some stuff is going to get dumped in due course. I was very grateful for the air conditioned trains and buses I can tell you. However I ‘m not moaning because what presented itself to me yesterday in Sokcho on my hike was the worst weather I’ve ever hiked in, more on that in a bit. For those of you who did the 3 peaks with me you will know how bad it must have been.
The bus from Seoul to Sokcho was painless, there were no issues with getting a ticket or
finding the bus, it’s fair to say the transportation system in Korea is first class and such good value, it cost me £9 to travel 200km in Hi-class and that has nothing to do with the fact I’m tall. England could learn a lot, David Cameron I hope you’re reading this!
Once I found my hostel (for the record I got their on my own this time without any help from the locals) I was given a 20 minute rundown by the owner about all there was to do and see in the area, sadly he had written so much on my map that I had no idea what any of it meant by the time he had finished and I didn’t have the heart or time to ask him to run through it again, I all did know was that everything I needed to know was scribbled on there somewhere in hand writing I couldn’t read. Another example of just how friendly and helpful everyone is, it’s a pleasure to be around.
I’m only here for 3 days because the next stage of my trip is a series of flying visits to about 5 areas of Korea
following the East coast to Busan in the South. The first stop being Sokcho. I chilled out in the evening I arrived and caught up on some sleep and then set off early the next morning to trek up Ulsan Bawi and 875m climb in the Seeoraksan national park . The height is not that extreme but with the weather conditions as mentioned above it became a real challenge, coupled to this the last third of the trek is on man-made stairs all 860 of them and trust me it’s far harder than any stepper work out in the gym I’ve ever done. It didn’t stop raining for the 2 hours it took to reach the summit. The rain was ballistic and I only saw one other person in four hours which is strange because it’s meant to be hiked by the masses. Everything became apparent once I reached the bottom again it turned out they shut the trekking path about 30 minutes after I started because it was deemed to dangerous, good of them to let me know! I have attached my photos from the summit and a photo from google to show the contrast of what I should
Seoraksan - The view I should have had!!
Seoraksan - The view I should have had!!
have seen on a good day and what I actually saw. After a knackering hike I decided to reward myself with some home comforts from…….wait for it……. Pizza Hut, you can’t beat a stuffed crust meat feast after a bloody hard workout! (and for all of those who are clearly thinking it, it’s not some sort of sexual treat, I haven’t reached Thailand yet.)
The remaining days here I spent heading up to another summit in a cable car and hiked to a temple set in a cave at the top of Geumganggul mountain. Following these treks I decided it was time to partake in a bit of naked spa and bathing action at a local Spring resort, once you get over the fact everyone is naked you do eventually relax but its not a normal occurrence for us Brits and takes a little while to adjust…. I will leave you all to fill in your own jokes here.
Im leaving tomorrow and heading a bit further South to a place called Samcheok where they have a park full of “Penis” sculptures so there could be some interesting pictures in the next update, I will be sure to
Serroksan National Park - Stairs
The stairway to hell/heaven, all 860 of them.
Tag myself on them so you don’t confuse me with the sculptures!!
That’s all from me from Sokcho.
Annyeong haseyo (Goodbye)
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