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Unread 12-20-2009, 11:39 PM
shanja's Avatar
shanja shanja is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Daejeon
Posts: 1,386
Winter warm thoughts

Hi ho folks, Uncle Jake here to say, get out and climb you wussies! Not that I did, but I'm an old man and attended a climbers comp/ party at least (thanks to the local Daejeon climbers and gym!).
As the chill grey clasp of dread winter tightens about the crags and walls, I know a few of you will drop off the face of the Earth (or Korea anyways) and hibernate in TV land, movie theatres, POC Bangs, bars and self-pity. Must it be thus?
Hell no! The local lads and lasses f(Korean) rom Wonju area told me, frankly they are surprised that recently they've not seen any ex-pats out and climbing. The weather is quite mild there at Ganhyeon still, and when it gets cold there are usually fires in 44 gallon drums at the cliff face - which catches the sun even in winter! And what a location. Up the road 15-20 mins will soon be opening again the PanDae Ice Park (판대빙장) which looks awesome. I'll be checking it out as soon as possible! (You need to book to climb here though, so if you feel like ice climbing check first with the boss dude via 033-761-4177 (only Korean)). No ice gear, still too cold for rock ratting? OK well Wonju has some nice small ski fields right there near Ganhyeon too! Hyundai-Sungwoo resort, Oak Valley Resort etc...OK not Aspen, not even Muju, but a good quick morning on the ski field then back to Ganhyeon in the warmer afternoon! Still want more? Ok well winter hiking is awesome! Get some walking crampons (eisen for 10-25,000won), a thermos of hot chocolate/ coffe and get into it! Chiaksan National Park at Wonju is a great place with lovely trails.
Wonju not for you? Well hell, get out wherever you are. The winter here need not be stale good folks. No, no no. I even spent a warm day inside cleaning gunk outta my cams, sharpening my axes and crampons, unsticking my biner gates and getting my rope tarp re-stitched! Then I ground some fresh New Guinea coffee and buzzed up, before searching online for ice boots for KA and organizing a mini get together with climber friends.
Matt has built himself what looks like a torture device, but he's proud of his woodie so...
Point is, don't let the winter get you down, but use it as a chance to have awesomeness enrich your life. Climb, hike, camp, ski, board, skate, sculpt!
quem deus perdere vult, primus dementat
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Unread 12-21-2009, 03:31 AM
skinsk's Avatar
skinsk skinsk is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Jochiwon (Sejong City)
Posts: 2,552
I'm with you-- last winter in Slovakia, every weekend was hiking through blizzards. Nice though. . . castles here and there and great scenery. The trick is to be warm and dry, which means be prepared. Bring some extra food and drink, as well. If necessary, buy everything you will need to stay warm and dry-- it's easy to get and not too pricey in Korea. Have fun!! See ya when the weather gets nicer!
"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!
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Unread 12-21-2009, 04:11 PM
Canadian Grizzly's Avatar
Canadian Grizzly Canadian Grizzly is offline
aka, The Griz or just Jake
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Hwamyeong-dong, Busan
Posts: 86
Uncle Jake,

I too second that motion. I come from the vast lands, lakes and rivers of the country which most of my students tell me is above 'America'. We are accustomed to the occassional flurry of snow. As long as you dress for the weather (cotton is not the best choice) and use your common sense (or borrow it from someone else) it can be quite enjoyable. There's nothing like a sea of white fluffy snow covering the peaks and valleys of our beloved recreational areas.

I'm missing the essential ice climbing gear over here, otherwise I'd be up there in a heartbeat. Do you know of anywhere that would rent picks and crampons? Definitely down for some winter trekking though. I saw a nice pair of walking crampons at Lotte Mart for around 30,000.

For all those who are more inclined to warmer weather, Busan is a perfect place to visit. A bunch of us are planning on climbing this Wednesday (supposed to be 55 F). It's not always that warm but so far I haven't seen the slightest hint of snow! So no excuses!! Get out there and have some good ole fashion fun!

The other Jake
I like big jugs!
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Unread 12-21-2009, 04:22 PM
shanja's Avatar
shanja shanja is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Daejeon
Posts: 1,386
O2 in Seoul rents the axes and boots/ crampons but only for use in there indoor wall (20,000won/ 3 hours). Don't know anywhere else renting the gear at this stage...maybe Dong-il knows? He knows everything! You Busan crew have a super groovy returnee KOTRer there in the form of Andy Seymour too, just back into Korea a few days ago (bedhead on KOTR). Top guy, get him out with yous. AS Chrissie approaches, hope you are all having a great time, great adventures and being groovy.
The "shanja" Jake (otherwise known as "Oi you, you damned fool!")
quem deus perdere vult, primus dementat
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Unread 12-21-2009, 04:44 PM
jason in Sokcho's Avatar
jason in Sokcho jason in Sokcho is offline
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Yangyang/Sokcho
Posts: 84
Agreed, and Korea's winter wonderland is pretty good indeed.

If any one is planning any alpine trips or vertical ice please let me know. Would also be great if anyone has any apline routes in Gangwon-do or any where for that matter (but gangwon-do most likely to have)to post them up for some fun on the snow and ice. Looking forwarded to the winter if it would only snow again already!
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Unread 12-22-2009, 06:08 AM
Grote4Life's Avatar
Grote4Life Grote4Life is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Gunsan
Posts: 10
So I have never been ice climbing but really want to give it a shot. maybe someone could PM me and let me know what I need and would possibly be willing to show me the ropes.
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Unread 12-22-2009, 09:13 AM
jason in Sokcho's Avatar
jason in Sokcho jason in Sokcho is offline
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Yangyang/Sokcho
Posts: 84
Hi Grote4life,

I am heading into o2 in seoul on the 26th for indoor ice climbing if you want to come along. I have the tools but have never ice climbed before ( although have had a bit of advice on technique from Jake and read "the Freedom of the hills" instruction as well). Was thinking of taking the lesson they offer there. 50,000 pp for 3 hours instruction and the cost of using the wall. In addition full gear hire comes to 13,000 won for everthing including tools, boots, crampons and clothing. Let me know if you are interested or if any one else is interested. Have posted a similar thread in up coming trips. Cheers
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Unread 12-24-2009, 04:06 AM
Wally Wally is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 10
Hehe, that's the spirit

I won't reach your fair country till it's nice and warm again. Or at least warming up. Due to the latest development it seems it'll be april before I get to move, oh well.
So I will be here, in the flatness that is holland, climbing indoors where the crew can be counted upon to use space heaters :P wishing you all goodluck with your winter endeavours
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