Our alarm went off early [editor’s note – it went off at 8.30am which wasn’t actually that early] because we had a long walk planned, In San took the ‘executive decision’ to turn it off so we had an extra half hour lie in, we were still tired out by our previous adventures. The baked goods we had acquired the night before for breakfast were not enough to sate our hunger so we went exploring. It turns out there are several tasty looking bakeries in the area however they are also a little pricy. Feeling the pressure as it was getting later and later we bought some bread and beef jerky … a worrying choice but we had limited options available (we were not going to pay KRW 8K for a tiny sandwich). There are no photo as In San is getting used to her role as holder of the (phone with the best) camera and forgets to photograph everything. She is improving. [editor’s note – she is awesome, James just insists on taking photo of everrrrything].
After a shaky start (arriving late because we were distracted by bread and because we missed the bus stop, our tactic of following the person with the lariest hiking gear failed us) we arrived and acquired some kimbap for later and marveled at the large selection of hiking stores.
Starting the climb we were in high spirits. Excited to explore, despite a little concern over missing the bus stop we ignored this ill omen.
Although where there was signage it was very clear it was a little eccentric in its placement, normally you needed to randomly pick a path and walk down it for a few minutes before you came to a sign congratulating you for the correct decision. Also it tended to forget about some locations every so often. However we were just grateful for any help in English.
We were enjoying the scenery and taking in the sights, it was a glorious afternoon tramping around in the woods.
After a while we got a bit peckish and decided to try our lunch of kimbap, it wasn’t the best but it was still tasty. [editor’s note – it was also not spicy which we were grateful for]
We headed up, In San amused herself by taking pictures of me in compromising positions and stalking a random buddhist monk for a while taking photo from a distance [editor’s note – it was not stalking, he was merely in front of us for a while and we could not overtake].
After a while we hadn’t seen any signs for a while and the trail seems a liiiiiiiitle bit … unclear but we pressed on. Just at the point where In San was considering whether she would have to eat all the snacks and leave me to starve we found a sign. For a different peak.
It turns out that we had got a little lost and ended up on the expert level route, unfortunately after walking most of the non expert route (and quite a bit more) as well (which is why a 4.7 Km + 1.8Km = 13 Km). This route was very interesting, took you up another peak and involved some upper body strength work-out as your hauled yourself along cables over rocks.
However now that we were back on an actual route we pressed on, stopping only to let ancient Korean grannies power on past. How they managed to go so fast (or even survive) on such challenging terrain we do not know (now we know why everybody is afraid of them and leaves them their seat on the metro). The peak was in sight … at a distance. Unfortunately we needed to go down before we could go up which was upsetting for In San. However many many cliff faces and ropes later we powered to the top.
Lucky for us the sun had come out and the views all around were amazing. It was definitely worth the grueling trip up here for this.
We decided to be lazy and take the ‘quick’ route back. Not realising that a) it wasn’t actually that quick b) it took us to a completely different entrance on the other side of the park. Oh no, non circular route. This could be dicey.
Everything seemed fine as we waited by the bus scedule drinking a blueberry smoothie, until the bus didn’t arrive. It turned out that we needed to walk to the main road 3 Km away, so off we went. Fortunately in the end we didn’t need a bus as we found a new Metro line that had just been opened that sped us back into town.
After all that walking we wanted something dirty, fried and crispy. So Korean Fried Chicken it was. We went to Kyochon chicken, it had good reviews and had very crispy chicken but it wasn’t garlicky enough for our tastes, good but not great. The actual chicken was succulent though.
We staggered back, tired and looking forwards to a shower and bed, ready for a day of excitement tomorrow.