Hi there! Although my wife Elicia and I no longer live in South Korea, this blog is very much still alive and functioning. The purpose of this post is to give a little background about Klimbing Korean Mountains’ conception, its purpose, and to point out some some hidden gems tucked away within the bowels of this blog. If you’d like, I’d invite you to read a bit about our story in the About Me tab (yes, it includes a long overdue update!)
Background and Purpose of KKM:
While living and working in Yeosu, South Korea from April 2013 to April 2015, we successfully visited and hiked in all 16 mountainous national parks in South Korea. In the beginning months after our first couple of hikes, I blindly began documenting our route and gathered our pictures onto a WordPress site. Then as the hikes piled up the site morphed into a semi-formal catalog of hikes, which culminated when we tackled Bukhansan National Park in October 2014. Somehow, I recorded our adventure for each and every hike we did.. and I’m so thankful I did that! Now looking back on those two years and all those hikes we did, I realize that Klimbing Korean Mountains blog is, now more than ever, humbly serving its intended purpose:
Document where we went along with what hikes/trails we did while simultaneously capturing the beautiful scenery we saw while hiking in South Korea. Why? So others too might observe, become informed, and get inspired to create epic adventures on their own.
Basically, a two-fold mission: (1) Selfishly I wanted to document and preserve our outdoor shenanigans (so when we become old and are spending afternoons on rocking chairs sipping lemonade we’ll have something neat to brag to our grandchildren about). But then, something interesting happened: hikers began finding this site and it began to serve as an informational source for the plentiful and amazing hiking in the Korean peninsula. (2) That’s the second part of my mission: to truly help, inspire and be a resource for residents of Korea or for outdoor enthusiasts looking to travel there and get a hike or two in. I’m happy to continue serving as a resource as long as the internet and WordPress let me.
On a side note: To this very day, I continue to be moved by how beautiful a country South Korea is. The country has invested tremendously on its infrastructure to support its national and provincial trails and associated amenities (parking, restrooms, maps, etc). After traveling to all the national parks, several provincial parks along with countless other lesser mountains, I can honestly say the infrastructure, signage, and amenities are second-to-none.
If you’re in Korea or are planning to go to Korea: Please do yourself a favor: get in appropriate footwear, bring some snacks and water (and a camera!) and head for the hills. I promise, you won’t be disappointed. Bonus points if you convince your friends to join you. Pro Tip = bring extra snacks and use them as ice-breakers with friendly Koreans who are sitting and enjoying picnics anywhere on the mountain. Sharing is bountiful in Korean culture, and smiles and laughter always follow the sharing of snacks and drinks.
KKM’s Tips, Tricks, and Fan Favorites:
Hiking Odometer – I kept track of the total distance we hiked in Korea… click to find out.
Summit Pics – Summit selfies are the best. Especially seeing all 16 collages on one page!
Kleaning Korean Mountains – A small movement to make the trails kleaner.
Highest Peaks in South Korea – A comprehensive list, complete with links to posts!
About Me – In case you missed it in the first paragraph of this post.
How to Use Naver Maps – This will take you from a “zero” to “hero” status.
Lastly, I sincerely want to THANK YOU for visiting my blog, following along, or using it as a resource for hiking in Korea or beyond. No matter how you stumbled upon it, I’m glad you’re here and hope it can be a resource or inspiration for you and your adventures. I will be here, just a comment away (likely a continent away, too). Please drop a line if you have any questions, comments, or concerns… I’d be happy to hear from you. If I don’t have the answer, I’ll do my best to point you in the right direction.