Saturday, November 6, 2010

Buraksan Mountain: My New Home Trail Run

I am so excited! I have found a wonderful new trail that will come very close to my love for The Noland Trail in Virginia. It is Buraksan Mountain in Songtan, South Korea.

       Today was my second foray onto the mountain so I was able to go further than last time. I also took my Garmin with me so I could follow the map back home when I got lost and turned around (it doesn’t take much for me to get lost!) Once again the trail was bustling with hikers and power walkers, although I don’t think I saw any actual runners. My dog and I wandered over single and double track and finally found the main trail. The big surprise was that in the middle of the trail was a huge fitness park full of gym equipment!

       Although I have just over a week before I am allowed to run again, I have to admit to letting myself run down a couple of little slopes, mostly to keep my dog from puling me onto my face, but I didn’t need much encouragement. It felt SOOO good to run even a little. I know my foot isn’t quite ready though. The bone may be pretty much healed, but the lazy muscles are not quite ready to go full force.

       I know there are many spectacular trails in Korea and I can’t wait to tackle them all, but having a lovely trail within walking distance is a huge treat. I think I only made it about 1/3 of the way up the mountain because my round trip was 4 miles and the guide map indicated it is over 5K to the top from the trail head, (I live about a mile from where the trail starts.) It will be a great goal for me to be able to run a full round trip to the top of the mountain. That should be a total of about 8 miles round trip with 3 miles up steep track. If the weather holds, next week’s goal will be to make it to the top!

       I should add that I wore my new Vibram Treks and they were awesome! No one even seemed to notice them, although the very large Poodle commands most of the attention when out and about in Korea so I could have been wearing clown hair and no one would have noticed.

       Here are a few pictures from today.

Part of the fitness park and look out tower

The Trail

There were mirrors in several places, but I can't figure out what they are for

I love the Spirit Poles.  They are meant to scare away evil spirits, some are scarier than others

I think the squirrels are way scarier than the poles!

We cal them Bunny Squirrels, Lucy calls them a reason to pull Mom down the trail

Lucy meeting some school boys

The girls usually just whip out cell phones for pictures

   For my take on the Korean fitness culture and a few more pictures, please see my guest blogger post on:


robison52 said...

Great post and photos!! Viewed your post on Allen's page as well. I'm jealous of the beautiful trails in Buraksan Mountain, the view sure beats my barren desert trails! Those tree spirits reminded me of those "Ents" in Tolkiens book, "The Two Towers;" I wonder which one of those tree spirits would look like "Treebeard?"

C. Beth said...

Awesome to find a trail--and I'm so glad to read that you are almost ready to start running again! I was wondering how you were doing.

mizuno said...

I simply love this pictures. So cool.

Anonymous said...

I live off one of the spurs from this trail. I would love to know where the trail head is. We hike through here regularly but have never found a trail head.

WendyBird said...

to the person asking about the trail head. It is on the "little 1", just under a mile from the 24hr McDonald's that is straight out from the Osan Main gate. From the McD's you would go south, then pass a big walking bridge over the 1. The trail head is marked by a hand made sign with some Hangul characters ad "2km" there is also a place to use pressureized air to blow the dust off your shoes :-) The sign is small and brown and you will have to look past it to see it. I'll post again with a good map.

fetish4running said...

so have you had your first run yet?! you must be dying to get back out there! what a great place to get started.