A&E on the World Heritage Train East 2009 travel blog

Seoraksan National Park

Wet people


A Seoraksan Temple, there are many scattered throughout the forests

Forest clearing

Another temple!

The goal of my first hike today, a bit obscured by mist...

Turn back point

On first hike

Temple through the trees

Riverside acer on second hike

Bottom of Bayeong Falls

Bayeong Falls

Top of falls

Trees and peaks

Seoraksan Peaks

It started raining towards the end of my day out yesterday, and hasn't stopped since! I have dried out quite a lot from today's tromping in the rain, but as I write this before I go home, I still have soaking wet feet and feel cold for almost the first time on this trip.

I had a fantastic day though in the Seoraksan National Park, about an hour north of here. If it wasn't due to carry on raining, than I would blow out the rest of my plans for this week and just stay hiking in Seoraksan, it is that attractive. It has the shreds of mist hanging on sharp peaks like Huangshang Mountain in China, together with hundreds of square miles of pine and autumn-coloured acers. The hiking trails even appear to be well sign-posted (and in English) too. Apparently it has leopards as well as bears, the former frankly a bit of surprise, I can't help thinking that is a mistranslation and what they were really warning about was chipmunks.

I was going to do three short hikes today and generally recce the place for moving in for the week, but in the end I only did two, and then bailed out home to start applying the hairdryer to my only pair of (now sodden) shoes. Hiking took much longer than normal due to the logistical difficulties involved in trying to keep my camera equipment dry and take pictures. The first walk was up to some stange rocks and an atmospheric cave temple, past various other temples on the way. The second was along this narrow gorge through which this powerful waterfall was forcing itself in a very vigorous way, all looking great! All in all Seoraksan is a beautiful place that I would highly recommend, probably the most attractive countryside I have seen on this trip yet, though be prepared for crowds, there were many, many Koreans there despite the ceaseless downpour.

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