Mt. Daedunsan Hiking by Richard

I went to Daedun Mountain today with Adventure Korea. A good turnout this week. almost a full coach. Today it was mainly Canadian women for some reason though a few guys from other trips were there too.

We got to the foot of Daedunsan about 12ish and had some lunch (Bibimbab) then set off for the cable car. Saw some greta views from there. The novelty factor of this particular mountain is the suspension bride over a ravine and a steep steel stairway up the face of a cliff along the route to the peak.

The bridge looked more impressive in the pictures actually but it was pretty cool, especially when it flexed. The ravine and valley was covered entirely in lush greenery and we could see a long way off. The rock here is quite craggy with more than a few interesting formations. If I was a rock climber I'd probably be screaming to climb them.

The steel stairway was pretty good, especially when you turn around and walk up it backwards and realise you are just stuck to the side of a cliff and pretty exposed.

After some more climbing up rocky steps (well ... a bunch or rocks tossed down the mountain) we got to the peak. Fortunately there was a lot of tree cover here. The heat was bad enough but having to do that climb in the sun would have been a real killer. At the peak there is a really, very ugly looking structure. It looked like some pointy 1940's style sci-fi rocket. If ever there was an unecessary structure in a completely inappropriate place, this was it. Having it there meant you couldn't stand and take in the whole 360 degree view which is kind of the point to getting up these peaks in the first place. You have to walk round it. Daft.

We left by a different route. The bridge and stairway are one way only. This was less rocky, more earthy to start with with plenty of tree cover. There were a few view spots on the way. We then hit more of the rocks that loosely formed steps. This would would be our path for another hour or so. It was very serene and peaceful with all that green and rock. I can understand why monks go all the way up mountains to build their temples.

We came across a woman living in a cave with a cement and corrugated steel front. She wasn't a monk exactly but she tended a shrine and had been living there since she was 29 years old! I reckon she must have been about 70.

We got to our coach at about 5pm went to a rest stop for some refreshments and left for Seoul shortly after. We saw some pretty snazzy motorbikes at the stop, including a couple of BMW tourers (two wheeled Winnebagos), a couple of Honda choppers, and another ace looking retro-modern Beamer.

All in all, a good day.

A shout-out to the chubby, shaggy haired Korean guy in the people wagon sporting the dalmation patterned vest and white flat cap. You are one classy dude!