Thursday, September 13, 2007

Another Thursday, another hike

A week or two ago, I was commenting on how clear the air was. Now, not so much.
Here are pics from Aug 28 (top) and Sept 13. As always, click to enlarge.

It was a great hike. Well, 'hike' may be exaggerating. The signs do say 'deung-san' which means hike, but I think the trail more of a mountain-book path -my translation for 'san-chaek-ro' (A proper translation would be nature trail or walking path).
There were places on the path in which I could almost believe I was the only one on the mountain. I even found myself looking for wildlife and trying to walk quietly to better find some. Beyond squirrels and several birds, I didn't see much wildlife, though.
On another part of the hike, I came across a man playing a trumpet - his music carried for minutes along my walk.
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Mountains are a little strange to a guy from central Canada -well, strange for me. I guess I always had an impression of mountains as being natural but basically of a pyramid shape. Travel in southern China did nothing to dispel that image with isolated mountains popping right out of rice-fields. Chungdaesan, like most mountains, has more of an octopus shape. There are ridges and low points followed by new high points and branching ridges.
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What I'm getting at is that I got lost briefly on the mountain. I followed a new ridgeline and thought I could just go down a slope and up the next and be on a familiar trail.
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Nope. I was in shorts so bushwhacking through thorn bushes didn't seem fun. I ended up backtracking a great deal but also met a few interesting people so I can't complain too much.
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In the past two weeks there has been a lot of work on the trails. New steps have been added and a barbed-wire fence put up to keep people from making new trails all willy-nilly.

I understand how people could use the, uh, backpack to carry stuff up but I think they would have to make a special trip just to carry the wheelbarrow up - the trail is too narrow and steep to push it except for at the top.


I have also seen new 'San bul Jo Shim' (beware of forest fires) signs. Hopefully they are an indication that the rains have eased for a bit - I don't want fires but dry weather would be nice - maybe rain at night would be acceptable.
Later, I saw the main reason for the warning about fires. The work crews have been piling kindling and firewood to dry everywhere.


Okay, that's not really firewood. Still, I don't know exactly why the brush was cleared. The grounds have a neater, more park-like appearance but that's not a good reason.

1 comment:

Marcus said...

The undergrowth was probably cleared to prevent forest fires. Apparently, undergrowth is the stuff where fires start and the stuff that burns the worst. In Australia they just burn it away. There are always columns of smoke on the horizon somewhere.