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Seodaemun Ansan Amjang Submitted on November 21st, 2005 by skinsk Print
Type: Rock Climbs Province: Gyeonggi-Do City: Seoul
Park: n/a Rating: 5.7 - 5.13 Style: Trad/sport
Views: 5665 Photos: 9 Photo(s) - Add Photos Maps: No Maps - Add Images

Typical Seoul granite, predominantly slab climbing, not unlike Insubong/Pukhansan "nearby". There are at least 21 one and two pitch routes, from 10 to 40 meters. Mostly solid bolts, a few old pitons, at least one artificial hold bolted on an overhanging crack. . . and 2 unbolted cracks, a 5.8 and a 2.11a.
This area is for people who LOVE Korea's granite slabs, but seek a little more privacy than Insubong offers on a Sunday. Some decent runout; many of the harder routes are pretty featureless. Dae Slab (main slab to the right) is used as a training ground/classroom for Korean climbers and mountaineers. Further right you might see folks practicing their Tyrolian Traverses!!
There are two main faces with a block in between facing East. Dae slab has some 2 pitch 5.7/8 climbs, the 11a crack and a 10a. Walk up and left past the block Cheonn Yeon Amjang, with a nice 5.9 crack (recognizable by some old fixed pitons and the "anchor" in the middle of the face just right of it) and the 5.11 crack/face with the artificial hold on it! Just left of that is Seomyeon Jungang Byeok, where we climbed. The climbs leading from the small staging area , just L of the "stemming" gully are 10d (L) and 11a (R). The Korean climbers knew what the names and grades were, but they are otherwise not marked, and deceiving if you're not used to slabs! We didn't check it out, but there are some 5.12s on blocks accessible from the top (a trail leads up).
It's conveniently located in NW Seoul, just off the subway.

From Muakjae Station (#325 on the orange line), take exit 3. Walk along the main road until 2 streets before the giant metal overpass. Turn right and wind your way up to the parking lots and trailhead. Most, if not all, of the sidestreets R of exit 3 will take you there. You can't miss the rock, as you head up the trails. Go past the 1st spring/well you come to. . . the trail goes by a fitness park complete with chin-up bars, a weight bench and weights, and hula hoops. . . head R past all of this.

Safety Concerns
We didn't encounter loose rock, and the gravelly bits that might rub off are very small and tend to just roll down. . . on the other hand, as you get closer to the rock, the trail becomes gravelly and lacks traction. The trails along the base are small to nonexistant L, and R were crowded with climbing students, as a "classroom". Anchors and bolts looked good on the climbs we did. We avoided the climbing school groups, but they appeared to be learning the finer points of rock safety. The relatively few climbers (to drop things) made helmets more of an option then say, Sunday at Insubong. Some of the routes are long. WATCH YOUR MIDDLE MARK, TIE KNOTS IN THE END OF YOUR ROPE, AND DISCUSS OPTIONS FOR LOWERING IF YOUR ROPE IS NOT LONG ENOUGH FOR THE ROUTE YOU ARE ON!!

Gear to Bring
Small friends for the cracks, otherwise a dozen draws will do you. . . the one 13a (on the backside?) has 13 bolts, so 15 if you're going to do that one. Long slings for rope drag would be a good idea. With a 60 meter rope you could do many routes, two would be better and would allow you to climb anything.

Additional Comments
In the shade most of the day (though I think there are routes on the other side, a longer approach but they'd get sun). Food and amenities are 15 minutes away just below the trailhead. It's smack in the city, and the approach is minimal, so convenience would be the big draw. OR, if you LOVE granite slabs. . . if you dream of Insubong (without crowds), this could be your dream come true!

Comment added by ricardo on November 23rd, 2005
at the mentioned fitness center the trail continues on, but you want to head up on a small path toward the walls.

Comment added by AFclimber on October 1st, 2012
I have a ot to add about this place. We made the treck there on saturday. 1st off, this place is "easy" to get to via public trans. The approach from the road to the climb is AWEFUL! Crazy steep road followed by the stairmaster from hell. As for the rock, it is 100% blank and sharp. I blew out my shoes there. IMO, there are way better spots to climb in Korea. I wouldn't waste my time here. Sorry to sound so negative but it is what it is...

Comment added by pebble on March 22nd, 2013
It's easier to approach from buddhist monestary side. On weekends, the trails are crawling with people so be warned.

MOST of the slab routes had bolts but NO HANGERS. I'm not sure if these are the aussie style carrot bolts that require bolt plates. Anyone have experience with these in Korea?

Comment added by Donnaeko on May 6th, 2013
This is the place listed p.274 of 'Climb' coffeetable book as Muakjae Ansan Amjang.

Comment added by climb.or.marc on March 3rd, 2018
We came in from the north side of the park and parked within about 200m of the crag. Small parking area that also had bathrooms called “Book Cafe Rest Area” on some of the local maps.

I would echo previous comments. Not worth it unless you live close by. I wouldn’t even travel across Seoul to go here again. Generally lots of choss. Chopped bolts, chipped holds, filled in holds (never seen that before), water run off (dirt, grass, gravel), gym holds. Looked like it hadn’t seen regular use in a while.

Good views of Seoul and local sites.

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