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  #1  
Unread 05-02-2006, 06:13 PM
andruhavyair andruhavyair is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Incheon, across from Juan
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Munhak Stadium in Incheon

Does anyone have information about the climbing structure at Munhak stadium in Incheon?

I only brought my climbing shoes, harness and belay device with me to Korea. I'm without a rope but would be willing to belay with anyone interested in checking this spot out.
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  #2  
Unread 05-06-2006, 01:34 PM
skinsk's Avatar
skinsk skinsk is offline
peace
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Jochiwon (Sejong City)
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Is that "안양-something-운동장"--? I used to climb alot at the wall outside of "Anyang Stadium" near the tennis courts-- was wondering if that's still a happening place. Used to always be able to pick up partners there (though check the belaying first!!) If that's the place you mean I can give you the info (though I am not at home now).
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  #3  
Unread 05-12-2006, 09:57 PM
andruhavyair andruhavyair is offline
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Thanks Skinks,

I think you might be talking about a different place. I'll be heading out to Munhak stadium in Incheon either this weekend or next and I'll post some pictures after I do.

thanks,
Andrew
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  #4  
Unread 05-25-2006, 06:14 PM
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littledigits littledigits is offline
fun and conscientious welcome
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Seoul (Shilim-dong)
Posts: 60
get it from a Munhak Stadium veteran

Wow. I thought I was the only foreigner who knew about this place. I've been going there regularly for a year.

It has great structures for both bouldering and climbing. There are 5 levels of difficulty. I'm not sure but they're about 10 to 12 stories high. There's usually a group of hardcore climbers that go there all the time.

If you are visibly foreign (not Asian and don't speak the language) and don't have a partner or the necessary equipment, then you will tend to attract the wrong type of people. The ones who will partner with you are usually the ones who are doing it becuz of the "freak factor." You being the freak of course. Freaks attract people but not necessarily for the reasons you want.

If this is not a concern of yours, then you will probably have no problem getting someone to belay you. If this is an issue with you as it is with many foreigners then I suggest you at least buy a rope and be an excellent climber. You will be taken a lot more seriously.

If you have any questions about climbing at the Munhak, feel free to ask.

Cheers,
Paula

P.S. Put some more info on your profile, dude! Not fair for you to be so anonymous.
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  #5  
Unread 05-25-2006, 07:52 PM
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skinsk skinsk is offline
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Hey, you guys should post it! Take some photos. this link: http://incheon.go.kr/inpia_en/servle...INPIA_EN000030 has transportation info, maps and general info on the stadium, and a mention of the wall.

Incheon has some amazing and friendly climbers (I lived there my first year in Korea). . . many of the top locals are just shy around foreigners or don't speak English well. Usually the people who aproach first are the ones who are most confident in English. Korean climbers are a subculture, a little on the fringes themselves, but in over 4 years here, I never met a group of Korean climbers who wouldn't offer a belay (I'd still want to check out their technique before I accepted!). Koreans are not used to seeing people climb alone. Very group oriented so they may be a little surprised if you show up solo. They may think you are waiting for someone (though they should know Paula by now!) and if they don't see your harness, they may just think you are curious. I know of very few Koreans who climb alone (no gym) and many Koreans think they are pretty weird! The best thing to do if you live in Incheon is join a gym, and then you will be treated a little differently.
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"If you can't do something well, you might as well learn to enjoy doing it poorly." -- from a de-motivational poster, but I find it oddly liberating!

Last edited by skinsk : 06-08-2006 at 12:55 AM.
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  #6  
Unread 05-26-2006, 12:40 PM
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fitzelq fitzelq is offline
Mark it eight, dude...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Talking another incheon climber...er...mostly boulderer....

Howdy,

My name's Dave and I've been climbing in the gym (mostly outdoors around Seoul on the weekends) for about 8 months, in Incheon. Mostly a gym near Seonhak station, called the Incle Rock Club. Most of the guys there also make a tri-weekly trek to Munhak, as have I. Like Paula said, it's a great set-up, but it would behoove you to pick up a rope for sure.

I just ruptured my hammie two weeks ago, so I'm outta the picture for awhile, but I hope to be back on the rock (god, i hate rehabs...) in a couple weeks, definetly on a rope. If you need a partner, or a belay slave (for the time being), I'd be happy just to have a rope in my hands and do some legless work on the bouldering wall between your rests.

Drop me a line if you're interested,
Dave
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  #7  
Unread 05-26-2006, 05:17 PM
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littledigits littledigits is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2005
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here's the straight dope

Actually, it would be unusual for any Korean to come up to someone they don't know: foreign or not, equipment or no equipment. When locals do things they wouldn't normally do to other locals there's a reason for it. If you're the one who needs a belay, it is up to you to ask for one, not for them to offer. And in my 4 years here, I've never met a group of climbers who would refuse. But like in many non-western cultures they might do it but not cuz they want to. Men here have a LOT of pride if you haven't noticed already. You should see their faces while they're belaying me on a 5.9 while they're used to climbing 5.11s. Hee, hee. It's good to be a girl.

Skinsk: i'll try to get some pics of Munhak but more importantly i've been trying to set up pics on my profile. how do you do it?
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  #8  
Unread 05-30-2006, 04:18 PM
andruhavyair andruhavyair is offline
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Thanks for the info everyone! I took some pics during one of the night climbing sessions, they're a little dark but you can get the idea. I'll post them under the "artificial wall" quick link.

Dave, I'm sorry to hear your leg is damaged, many of the climbers I ran into mentioned you and asked if I knew who you were.

Littledigits, thanks for the tip. All in all, everyone is pretty open to foreigner climbers. I guess remedial Korean and a smile goes a long way.

There are people climbing at the wall every weekday from 6pm to 10pm except Mondays and weekends. My understanding is that the wall is closed all day Monday and on on the weekends its open from 10am to 6pm.

I wouldn't say this is a good place for beginners. Most of the beginner lead climbs are pumpy and the beginner walls are booked on the weekends for children's classes. If anyone is looking for a climbing partner let me know.
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  #9  
Unread 05-30-2006, 06:47 PM
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skinsk skinsk is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2005
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Woo hoo! Someone directed a tech question at me? But I know the answer to this one!! Click on user CP under user links on the left. A new panel will appear on the left next to it. Select edit avatar or edit profile picture. Click custom avatar. . .You can then upload a photo or use a web address if it's on the web somewhere (I haven't tried that one!) Then save changes!

Dave. . . sorry to hear 'bout the leg. . . I just bruised my arm (why put marble steps at a tourist info place?) and found it painful to climb. . . which sucks. Anyway, hope you're feeling better.

Quote:
I guess remedial Korean and a smile goes a long way.
that is the key. . . In over four years (starting in '98) in Korea I have found the local climbers much more receptive to foreigners than most Americans would be if someone who barely spoke English showed up! DESPITE the fact that I smoked, am vegetarian, lived in Incheon (a long drive out of the way returning home on Sunday night) and smelled pretty rancid after 15 minutes in summer. . . the Korean climbers really put up with a lot (and I'm sure I got away with alot because I was foreign!) to include me on trips (Sonia, everyone is going. . . you must come!) They really went out of their way if they didn't want me. . . inviting me to weddings, baby birthday parties, visiting me at the hospital, taking me on 3 week road trips, buying my mom a birthday cake and gifts, taking my sister out drinking. . . asking me to model their clothes, etc. . . and the people I am referring to include top climber like Chung-jun, Mi-young, Sang-won, Seong-kwan, Hyun-jung. . . folks who belayed me on 5.10 (then a few meters down I belayed them on 5.13!). . . I know many people on this site (and before this site) with similar (the same!) stories.

Please don't take this wrong. . . like anywhere, it takes a long time and effort before a true friendship can form, even without the language/culture barriers, but it seems you are rushing to judgement, without really knowing them or their motivations. One of the best things about climbing is that it helps break down these barriers because we can start with the common passion. Soju and a dictionary help too. I would say in the "pride" department, Koreans are extremely modest! Rarely do they spray or promote themselves or inflate their grades as Westerners do. The top climbers in Korea train with the average Kim!

I do not doubt what you say about your experience, but I question the assumptions you make as to why. . . especially after 4 years. Don't give up on the Korean climbers! Try a new approach! I really believe that when we change the way we look at things, we change the things we look at. How people perceive us is directly related to how we perceive them. Women who think "guys are all jerks" meet a lot of jerks. I have lived and travelled all over the world and the US, more often than not looking for cool people to climb with, and 98% of the time those are the people I find!

Try to put aside past experiences and pre-judgements. Remember that it's hard enough to generalize about our own culture, much less Korean. You stand nothing to lose, and everything to gain. It will be so well-worth it and you will see a side of Korea that even KOTR can't offer Good luck!

**added 6/4***
Quote:
foot soldier in arms
tee hee hee. . . interesting choice of words! anyway, rereading your original comments, I would still say that they are just one way of seeing the Korean climbers, and many people have more positive interpretations! I am not, that I am aware, judging you, only addressing the comments in the post. No need to "defend" yourself; you can take my comments or leave them! Each person will have their own observations and experiences. Just want "new" people to know there is another way to look at the situation. i.e., in my post, it has been my observation thet the Koreans are extremely humble.
guess I try to offer a different perspective whenever I feel someone is slighted or misrepresented, be it Koreans, military, foreigners. . . and they are not able to speak for themselves! I don't deny that your comments are in good faith, based on your experiences and observations! I am glad to hear that you, too, will defend the Koreans when you perceive they are slighted! Glad to see there's more to the story! Comments here are not directed at one person; just another observation on the local climbing scene. I'm not sure who you talked to regarding the original post-- I think most people were, as I was, surprized by the tone and "wrong type of people", "freaks". . . comments! I also think the tone of your follow-up was a bit odd, but I let all the remarks stand on their own merit. (Not a big fan of "do what makes you feel good" myself. . . but to each her own! You can take it out on me) I know from previous conversations, that you seem like a nice and interesting person, and it was never my intent to take away from that! I tried very hard to avoid negativity. . . I am sorry that you took it that way . Peace!

6/7: my originl PM to Paula, for anyone who cares not sure what seems so different?
no hard feelings
and none taken. . . I consider your reply a good 'nough response. . . would've PMed but then "newbies" might have still gotten the negative original impression. But I am glad that you, too, cleared that up!! The idea is, of course they treat you differently because you are differrent, but it's well within the norm, and you become more and more a part of the team as they get to know you. . . and I do "defend", I prefer "try to explain, or at least offer a myriad of possible explainations for" the Koreans, if they are being slighted, the military, etc. . . certainly the latter (and the former) could do it themselves, but are often not around (I also try to do the same for foreigners. . .though I am at a lost when it comes to explaining American policies:/) But I would love to climb with you and get to know you!
And "Noona" is for "older sister" (it's what the Koreans call ME!!) and ("Oppa" for older brother). . . it sounds like you suggeest Andrew call everyone "Noona"?
But "no worries". . . I really went over that to try and not sound offensive. . . but to give a fuller picture, or another side. I do wish sometimes I could be more succincct. . .I have been called worse , though as a by the book peacenik, a "foot soldier in arms" gave my friends and I quite a chuckle!

Peace!
__________________
"If you can't do something well, you might as well learn to enjoy doing it poorly." -- from a de-motivational poster, but I find it oddly liberating!

Last edited by skinsk : 06-08-2006 at 12:32 AM.
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  #10  
Unread 06-01-2006, 08:28 PM
littledigits's Avatar
littledigits littledigits is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Seoul (Shilim-dong)
Posts: 60
What?!!!

Sonia,

Goodness. Where do I start?

First of all, thank you for the tip on the avatar.

Sonia, why you feel the need to put yourself in a position to act as a foot soldier in arms defending Korean climbers to the world...from what exactly...I don't know. If it's from me, I don't know why since I'm the one who was advocating behaviour that would show respect. I think everyone on the discussion got that except you.

I find it interesting that you are commenting so forcefully on my "experiences and pre-judgements" when you obviously know nothing about what they are. You are the one who is leaping to the conclusion such as I "was giving up on Korean climbers" or that I "don't know them...or they motivations," or that there's a cultural or linguistic divide. That, my dear, is pre-judging.

And for making generalities about culture...what do you believe saying that "Koreans are modest" and "Korean climbers put up with a lot" would be considered? I would say you have a serious degree of projection going on or it's just plain hypocrisy.

If you did know something about me then you would realize just how foolish your comments are. I know quite a bit about Koreans' motivations and the impressions they have of foreigners which goes beyond the mere 4 years (you keep mentioning) I've been here.

Now, when you said "In over four years (starting in '98) in Korea I have found the local climbers much more receptive to foreigners than most Americans would be if someone who barely spoke English showed up! DESPITE the fact that I smoked, am vegetarian, lived in Incheon (a long drive out of the way returning home on Sunday night) and smelled pretty rancid after 15 minutes in summer. . . the Korean climbers really put up with a lot (and I'm sure I got away with alot because I was foreign!)" As you can see I don't know how to use the quote option either.

That was my point wasn't it? They treat foreigners differently. Except you think it's a good thing. In fact, they are much tooo permissive when it comes to foreigners. And many foreigners take advantage of that. In fact I had to step in several times when I saw a foreigner be openly disrespectful to Koreans. When either side treats the other in a different manner than they would treat their own, you should question it.

Incidentally, I believe that asking me "not to take this in the wrong way" when you proceed to systematically assume then judge my intentions in a very negative way is incredibly insincere and manipulative. If you didn't want me to take it the "wrong way" you would have reserved your comments as a private message and not make this forum into a tabloid. I make no such pretention.

The other thing is when it comes to experiences, just because someone else's are not what you want them to be nor do they parallel yours doesn't make theirs wrong, nor does it make yours right.

I just question why you seem to think mine were all negative.

There! That felt good. No hard feelings Sonia. Honest.

Paula

*** added on June 7 ***


Sonia, you just don't seem to be getting it so I'll try to make this as clear as possible. I don't have as much time as you obviously do to type up a script full of sermons each time something that I do not agree with pops up but I'll make an exception just for you.

I find it hard to take anything you say on true faith. Why? Because you lie.

You promote one set of behaviours for yourself then condemn others on it. You contradict yourself and attack others' opinions all the while feigning innocence. You insult me and then act surprised when you get called on it. Golly. What the hell?

Why is your PM to me so very different to your comment on this board? It doesn't seem like you "want to get to know me" on the open forum. Why is your two messages so very "two-toned?"

Sonia, if these comments were not meant for me then who is the person "making assumptions...after 4 years?" Was there another person in this branch that said they were here for 4 years? C'mon.

If as you say you wrote your novel/comments for newcomers so they see..."another way to look at it," was it?...why do you continuously project mine as being negative and yours as being positive? Why do you need to strongarm a position on them? Shouldn't they be able to judge for themselves?

However and whatever you might think when people post comments on this site, they're not waiting for your permission or approval. I don't want to crush you with this revelation but...shucks, you just don't have that power.

Unlike you I don't have to revisit or defend my comments since they actually do stand on their own. Why do you feel I should "take or leave" your comments when two responses after you certainly can't do that to mine? If everyone has their own experiences then why do you insist only on yours? What gives you the right to tell me to "put aside past experiences" and who are you to say they are "pre-judgements." I didn't "take" your comments in any other way then the way you presented them, Sonia. If nothing else, take responsibility for what you say.

You mention that my "tone" seemed odd. Well, that is what having a genuine reaction sounds like. You know...that's kinda what happens when someone takes your comments and twists them to fit their own personal baggage and pretends to be your friend about it. I funny enough don't appreciate that.

I can't say that there are no hard feelings this time. Like you said, you seemed quite helpful and enthusiastic on your other posts but during the past couple of weeks you really come off as being patronising and duplicitous. Geez, why would your comment on my PM be so very different from the comment on the open forum?

I really wish I could end this on a friendly note but gosh, give me something to work with Sonia.

Maybe it's better you do just post on the forum. At least then I'm only talking to one of you.

Disapointedly yours,
Paula

Last edited by littledigits : 06-07-2006 at 07:11 PM.
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