Friday, October 12, 2007

26 summits

You may recall that I decided I should hike the big hill behind my apartment an average of once a week this year. I made the decision in August and so have been trying for three or four hikes a week to catch up. I haven't caught up but I am on schedule to make the 52 with time to spare.

Hopefully, the hiking here will prepare me for Seoraksan. It past time that I returned to the park's peak, Dae-chung-bong. I plan to hike up in December from O-saek on the shortest route and again a few times in January before crossing from O-saek to Seorak-dong, a much longer hike.

One funny thing about the hill behind my apartment is that my son may have more summits under belt than I do. The babysitter frequently takes him up, possibly more than once a week. I'm not sure if I should ask or not. I was surprised when I learned they did the hike as he likes me to carry him when we go up. The babysitter says she does not carry him. I wonder what her secret is.

I wrestled with this last point for a while but decided I am not giving away any military secrets. Earlier, I described how an ajumma army had been clearing brush and cutting the grass on the mountain. Recently, the literal army has been up, refurbishing their foxholes and such.

I might make a whole post out of the point but I have to say I wasn't sure if I should mention the military activities on the hill. I finally figured that nearly every hill and mountain in Korea has fortifications to some degree so the simple statement of their existence wasn't a blow to national (or my) security. I gave a speech at Gangneung National University on the subject and told them I just wasn't sure what was acceptable or customary, much less legal. I would welcome comments on the subject. Can I take and post pictures of military fortifications? Would it be wise to give details on fortifications defending my own city? Does anyone care? Have I watched too many AFKN PSAs describing OPSEC? Should I remove a few paragraphs of this post?


GI Korea said...

I don't think publishing the pictures is a big deal since it is a public mountain. Any North Korean spy can walk up there and take pictures if they wanted to.

If you were in a military base or on military land than it would be a different story.

kwandongbrian said...

Thanks. I always think about that when I see military activities. It's not so much the legal aspect as the, I don't know, the common sense aspect? The patriotic aspect? The self preservation aspect?

Anyway, you are right. I am sure the Daum website forum dedicated to the mountain has photos of the refurbished bunkers and such (Note how, again, I did not name the mountain in this post).

skindleshanks said...

Speaking of military activity, Brian, today at about 3pm I saw a convergence of multiple Coast Guard and other vessels as well as a helicopter about 500 metres off the coast near the Bridge to Nowhere. The coast guard vessels seemed at first to be moving at high speed with considerable wakes. They were there for about 15 minutes, and it seemed that another (I believe non-military) vessel near the center of the action may or may not have had fire or smoke--even with binoculars, it was hard to see as it was about 2-3 km away.
My wife said she thought it was a training exercise, but i don't think they'd do such exercises so close to town, in full view like that. I think maybe it was a rescue. Any ideas/inside information?