Saturday, December 1, 2012

Hiking Baegyang Mountain

Several weekends ago, we went on a hike for the first time. The location for the hike couldn't be better: the trailhead is about 300 meters from out front door, and right on the side of the road. It was 72 degrees and the sky was clear and blue.

Hiking in Korea is not like hiking in the states. Back home, one can choose any mountain, follow the trail, and expect to see very few people - especially as the trail gains elevation; anyone you do see is relatively young. Korean hikes, for one, have countless trails going in every direction. On a trail map it probably looks like a 3 year old acquired a pen and spent a great deal of constructive time defacing the neat the gridlines.

Secondly, there are, in comparison to the states, a tremendous number of people who hike here - it is the Korean past time. Secondly, the hiking demographic in Korea is almost exclusively 40-80. Natalie and I were the youngest people by far that we saw hiking. I inquired from my fellow teachers into why the younger generation is absent from hiking. The unanymous answer was that they are busy with their electronics, but that when the younger generation gets older they will probably take up hiking too. What is espeically odd is that, even when you get to the top of the mountain, the demographic remains essentially unchanged - sure you lose a few people near the upper end. And boy was it strange to see men and women well into their seventies keeping pace with us!

Below are several more pictures and one video of our hike:

Lastly (below) only in Korea:
Full amenities 5 kilometers in. One of 3 workout stations. This one is at about 1500 feet elevation, near the top of the mountain.

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