Sunday, March 06, 2011

I made it out to the mountain behind our apartment today. It was a 5 minute walk to the park, then about an hour and a half to the top. The trail is 2 miles up to the top, with an elevation gain of around 2000 feet. I learned several things about Koreans. First, they love to hike. When I was huffing and puffing my way up the trail, groups of elderly were buzzing by me in both directions. Second, drinking heavily on the trail is acceptable.

Here are some pics from the hike:

About 200 meters up a muddy slope there was this traditional grave site and burial mound. The stone had dates noting that one person laying there was born in 1903 and passed in 2000.

On the trail following a frozen stream.

After hiking up for about 30 minutes, I came upon quite the party. These folks were part of a mountaineering group. They had a pretty impressive spread of food and drink. They were really tanked, and interested in talking to me for about 5 minutes. Then they gave me a Dixie cup full of soju and:

This cake. The man on the front right of the previous photo gave it to me. He said "Korean cake." I think it's a gelatinous paste covered in beans. The flavor is like gummy rice with a mild hint of sugar and salt.

A young English speaking girl took a photo of me and her friends about half way up the mountain.

The top, with a view of Namyangju-si in the background.

Here is a brief video with a view of what is going on at the top of the mountain.

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