Sunday, October 6, 2019

Day 9, Leg 8

It started raining last evening while I was at the Hyu Drive-in Hotel, but everything had cleared up by this morning, so today's 29-kilometer walk took place under spectacular skies. This was tantalizingly close to a perfect day, weather-wise: sunny, a few scattered clouds, and a cool breeze. It's still a little too hot in full sunlight, but part of the problem may also be my thick tee shirt and my black, sun-absorbing Sith toshi.

And in gastric news: the intestines seem to have returned to a normal rhythm, which has been a relief in more ways than one. I was getting worried that I'd end up holding the poo in for days before finally exploding while on the trail. Thank the dark powers that that didn't happen.

Today's walk, while glorious in the meteorological sense, was nevertheless very long and very tiring. The final part of the walk didn't match my memory of the route I'd taken in 2017; I still need to check what's up with that. I also got lost after stupidly missing a turn early on, so I may have ended up walking closer to 30 km than just 29.

Terrain-wise, there were some minor hills, but nothing exhausting. This segment was mostly either flat or gently rolling. And the riverside landscapes were something to behold; I ended up snapping over 80 pictures because I wanted so badly to take everything in.

I think part of the reason why the day became so wearisome is that I didn't take any meds during my second break. I began to feel some deep aches by the time I was around 30,000 steps, so I resolved to sit down and gobble some Korean Advil as soon as I could find a bench or a shwimteo. Unfortunately, I found myself on a stretch of the path where sit-down areas were nowhere to be found, so it wasn't until I was close to 40,000 steps that I finally plopped down on a bench next to what appeared to be some kind of golf course for old folks. I took my meds, lay back for 30 minutes so the chemicals would kick in, then got up and trudged the final few kilometers through that martial-arts park and to the yeogwan I had stayed at last time: Baek Un Park Yeogwan (백운파크).

The manager was outside when I lumber-limped up to him and asked whether an overnight was possible. He saw my tee shirt and asked me whether I was doing the Four Rivers path. I said yes and noted that I had stayed at his yeogwan two years earlier. Maybe he took a liking to me because, the next thing I knew, the manager had charged me only W30,000 for an overnight stay, despite there being a chart that very clearly said the basic rate was W40,000. I thanked the manager profusely, dumped my stuff in my room, then went next door for some Korean-style Chinese food: jjambbong and fried mandu, in my case.

The room I have is better than the one I'd had two years ago. No leaky plumbing, for one thing. And like the skanky Yeonghwa yeogwan that I'd stayed at in Yeoju, this room has both an A/C and a fan, which is good for drying clothes. Having a dry shirt in the morning is crucial as the mornings become cooler: I don't want to freeze to death on the trail just after sunrise.

I have over 80 pics. I'll show a few below and upload everything to Google Drive. I've discovered that I can't embed pics in this blog directly from Drive, at least not from my cell phone. My current room has no computer, so I can't test whether a direct-from-Drive embedding is possible via a desktop computer. We'll soon see, I'm sure.

October 4 stats:

October 5 stats:

October 6 stats:

I'm doxxing a dog farm that I walked by. I could hear the multitudes of barks and yelps in the distance. No dog deserves this fate.

And now, some actual photos from today.

Walking out of town this morning:

Couches under a bridge:

A dew-bedizened bloom:

One of many beautiful scenes:

A happy couple tooling along on their one-wheeled contraptions:

'Tis the season to dry chilies:

Man-made colossi:

One of many shwimteo seen today:

And I guess we'll end with a selfie:

A great day in all, but I'm very tired. I'll upload the day's pics to Google Drive. As the Stark family might say: Access is coming.

Photo essay:


  1. I recently learned something interesting that may be of interest to you as well: While white clothes are indeed the best at reflecting the sun's heat, they are in fact the worst at protecting you from the sun's UV rays. The reverse is true for black, so perhaps you can take comfort in knowing that you are protecting your arms even if you are a little warm in the sunshine.

  2. So desu nae...

    I wonder what the science behind that is. There's probably a YouTube video that explains the whole thing.