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Newer Page 474 of 909 Older Full Trip Report
Korea Busan Hiking Geumjung

12 March 2015

Great wall of Korea

In about 1600, Korea and Japan were having one of their regular wars.
To stop this, Korea decided to build a wall along the mountains that surround Busan, so that Japanese pirates were free to download everything whilst Koreans watched from the hills.
No really, the wall was apparently a huge failure, first sign of trouble, abandon the city and its riches, go into the hills and enjoy the view.

This happened a number of times, 1600, 1620, 1650, 1800, 1920, 2020.

The wall itself is a mixture of new re creation of wall, original wall still in good condition, rubble you can walk along and claimed former site of wall.
Because there is wall to follow, today I didnt get lost. There are a few offshoots of wall, but I just kept to the city side.
It seems the wall is a ring, around a fortress in a valley surrounded by mountains, probably also a stupid idea, because invading forces just walked around it and kept going.
What this means for me today is, awesome views all day. 7 hours worth.
I went the entire length of the city side of the ring, so like a semi circle, which is half a circle for the geometrically challenged.
One day, I would like to complete the circle, however probably not this trip, theres too many other mountains around here. I know because I could see them all.
I believe todays route was about 16km, subway station to subway station.
Researching where to go was frustrating, as theres a cable car at one end, and a huge temple complex at the other. All English websites discuss how to get to the cable car without having to walk a step, where you can see photos of the wall, and then how to get back down from the cable car and drive to the other end and see the temple without walking at all.
The best way to go is to walk to the base of the cable car station, find a path heading upwards, then just follow the signs to each watchtower, Korean signs but with English numbers.
Or you can just listen for the Korean hikers and their transistor radios blasting out Gangnam style.
Thats enough text, I culled the photos from over 100 down to 33, so you shouldnt have to scroll too far.

Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - This is the hill from the subway station to the start of the trail. The red poles going up are for the cable car. I stopped at the homeplus supermarke

This is the hill from the subway station to the start of the trail. The red poles going up are for the cable car.
I stopped at the homeplus supermarket for supplies, and succesfully used the Korean self service checkout thing.
It was in Korean but made by the same people that make the Australian ones, so the icons and order of doing stuff were the same.
I saw plenty of Koreans angry at the stupid machines though.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - What kind of bullshit hike is this. Also theres an amusement park.

What kind of bullshit hike is this. Also theres an amusement park.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - My route goes beyond the right edge of this map.

My route goes beyond the right edge of this map.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - The hardest part as far as navigation went today was to find the start of the trail at the back of the amusement park. They dont really want you to av

The hardest part as far as navigation went today was to find the start of the trail at the back of the amusement park.
They dont really want you to avoid paying for the cable car. This is a common thing around the world.
I downloaded the maps.naver.com app to my phone, which is Korean google, and fantastic, it has hiking routes and topography incorporated in the main map.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - First of many photos of the view. I zoomed. Those 2 big buildings are quite near my hotel. I can see them now out my window. And if they look in my di

First of many photos of the view. I zoomed. Those 2 big buildings are quite near my hotel. I can see them now out my window. And if they look in my direction, they can see my bright purple underpants as its all I am wearing.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Taken from near wear the cable car tops out. Those big buildings by the ocean are the futuristic part of Busan. Note all the hills in the city itself,

Taken from near wear the cable car tops out. Those big buildings by the ocean are the futuristic part of Busan.
Note all the hills in the city itself, when you are at street level you dont know that theres more city behind them.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - This is looking more in the direction I will be heading, along the various ridges.

This is looking more in the direction I will be heading, along the various ridges.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Panorama 1. I broke the rules today and uploaded more than 1 panorama. I should add a link here to a full resolution version, but I cant be bothered.

Panorama 1. I broke the rules today and uploaded more than 1 panorama. I should add a link here to a full resolution version, but I cant be bothered.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - The cable car is more of your traditional variety. It doesnt seem to run constantly, and the one I did see go past had no one on it. I stood here for

The cable car is more of your traditional variety. It doesnt seem to run constantly, and the one I did see go past had no one on it.
I stood here for a few minutes waiting for it to leave the station to make for a better photo, but it never did.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - And this is the first gatehouse, and the start of the great wall of Korean military failure. Rebuilt. The rebuilt parts were guarded by rope, the old

And this is the first gatehouse, and the start of the great wall of Korean military failure.
Rebuilt. The rebuilt parts were guarded by rope, the old parts, you can dismantle by hand and walk along.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Very well maintained section of faux wall. Its much higher on the downward side, probably 12 feet in most places.

Very well maintained section of faux wall. Its much higher on the downward side, probably 12 feet in most places.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - And here I am at the next watchtower. This is my happy face.

And here I am at the next watchtower. This is my happy face.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Selfie time.

Selfie time.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - And the next gatehouse, at another rebuilt section.

And the next gatehouse, at another rebuilt section.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - I am about half way here, and that ridge on the left side, in the background, behind the rocky ridge, I think thats the ridge I would come down on in

I am about half way here, and that ridge on the left side, in the background, behind the rocky ridge, I think thats the ridge I would come down on in a few hours time.
Got it?


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Heres a view from the half way point of the ridges I had crossed so far. Much of the time you are in trees and its not apparent you are going over the

Heres a view from the half way point of the ridges I had crossed so far.
Much of the time you are in trees and its not apparent you are going over the top. It really wasnt strenuous or technically challenging.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Next gatehouse.... Return of .....

Next gatehouse....
Return of .....


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - There were a lot more boulders to come, but I thought these ones framed the shot well. I am an expert at photographic composition. Sun is on the wrong

There were a lot more boulders to come, but I thought these ones framed the shot well. I am an expert at photographic composition.
Sun is on the wrong side though.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - And now, first glimpse of the other side of the mountain range. A great plain. With seas of presumably rice.

And now, first glimpse of the other side of the mountain range. A great plain. With seas of presumably rice.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - A good view of the wall running along a ridge. I am setting a world record for use of the word 'ridge'.

A good view of the wall running along a ridge.
I am setting a world record for use of the word 'ridge'.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - I enjoyed the view from here. Its probably one of the spots I appreciated some pocari sweat energy drink and a calorie balance bar.

I enjoyed the view from here. Its probably one of the spots I appreciated some pocari sweat energy drink and a calorie balance bar.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Next gathouse, I climbed up those rocks too.

Next gathouse, I climbed up those rocks too.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Then I risked plummeting to a hilarious end snapping yet another selfie.

Then I risked plummeting to a hilarious end snapping yet another selfie.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Wall snaking along the....RIDGE

Wall snaking along the....RIDGE


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - 2nd panorama for today, featuring rocks, wall, city and ridge.

2nd panorama for today, featuring rocks, wall, city and ridge.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Finally, somewhere to put my camera for a self timer selfie! Nailed it.

Finally, somewhere to put my camera for a self timer selfie! Nailed it.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - The final gatehouse. Now for the descent. Only another 90 minutes!

The final gatehouse. Now for the descent. Only another 90 minutes!


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Turns out going down was the hardest part of todays journey, over this sea of boulders. It literally was called, the sea of boulders. It went for abou

Turns out going down was the hardest part of todays journey, over this sea of boulders.
It literally was called, the sea of boulders. It went for about 3km.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Eventually I got to the top temple, where there were no people. Just this dog. This dog did not want me to see the temple. I thought I outsmarted him

Eventually I got to the top temple, where there were no people. Just this dog.
This dog did not want me to see the temple.
I thought I outsmarted him and went around to a side entrance.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - No.

No.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Then I got to the main temple, Beomeosa. It had many areas under construction. You can get to this by road, which many people had done, however the ni

Then I got to the main temple, Beomeosa.
It had many areas under construction.
You can get to this by road, which many people had done, however the nice walk isnt over yet, theres a wooden deck going for a few more kilometres along a stream basically all the way to the subway station.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - Wooden deck walk goes past some very nice, very unusual houses. This is a cafe and porcelain museum.

Wooden deck walk goes past some very nice, very unusual houses. This is a cafe and porcelain museum.


Korea-Busan-Hiking-Geumjung - I celebrated my 7 hour journey with a Nougat ice cream, which was $1 and fantastic. Todays route is HIGHLY recommended, it gets my 5 star maximum rati

I celebrated my 7 hour journey with a Nougat ice cream, which was $1 and fantastic.
Todays route is HIGHLY recommended, it gets my 5 star maximum rating for fun time in the mountains.
You can review my rating system elsewhere online.
The collection of mountains and ridges which join them are called Geumjeongsan. You are more likely to find info by looking up Busan fortress mountain hike.


NewerPage 474 of 909OlderFull Trip Report