Sunday, February 08, 2009

first hike of the year

And it was a short but remarkable challenging one.

Current Hiking Conditions: Muddy and messy!

Readers of this blog may recall that I hiked Chungdaesan, the little mountain behind my apartment nearly 60 times in one year. With that in mind, you might be surprised that I had such difficulty today.

The explanation is in this photo of our shoes.

Actually, they look pretty good; we must have spent a lot of time at the peak cleaning them.

Yes, the warm weather, wonderfully warm, has thawed the ground, making it a terrible mess.

If I had been soloing, I probably would have returned home after starting the hike because of the trail conditions. Kwandongwife doesn't get as many opportunities though, so we soldiered on. She ended up carrying the little guy for a large portion of the hike, with me carrying him only for the short section where we met her coworkers who teased her immensely (I was also carrying a large pack with snack food and clothing).

I also have to admit that we walked on the edges of the trail, widening it and furthering erosion; something I hope I would not have done if soloing.

The take home message from this post is hiking is a bad idea in coastal Gangwondo for the next few weeks.

Here is an article from the Times, written a year ago, that describes Seoraksan, but the pics are from the frozen winter so are not representative of current conditions, which I am sure are messy.

From the peak, we had a nice view of Chungcho Lake (click to bigify) and the pier for the Water Fire Festival is just visible.

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