둘레길, Doolegil Trail Marker
Exercise area along the trail
Slight hill along the trail. Trees are wrapped to protect them from insects who would kill them.
Information center near Suyu
Grave of 광복군
4.19 Memorial Cemetery from Above
Next, along the way we found the 4.19 Memorial Cemetery. I had never heard of this place, but after looking it up, it is the resting place for the 224 pro-democracy protesters killed on April 19th, 1960. They were shot in a protest against the president Syng-Man Rhee who rigged the election to secure his second term in office. While we couldn't reach the cemetery from the path, it made me want to check out this place another time as it has a museum attached to it as well.
At some point along the way we pulled out our lunch of kimbap. While kimbap is not my favorite food (always forget to tell them to take out the radish), it does make for perfect hiking food as it's cheap, light and easy to pack. And at 1,500 each, how can you find anything better?
Information Center in Ui
This was the second information center we passed in 우이. I like the name of this place because the romanization of it's name is awesome: Ui. It's a good place to stock up on water at the vending machine or use the toilet as they are rather hard to come by along certain parts of the trail.
One member of our group turned out to be quite the bird watcher and, while we didn't have any binoculars, we did have my 48x zoom which spotted this bird which we were able to identify as a Dollarbird. Good name for a bird.
After about 4 hours of hiking (with many, many breaks) we decided to call it a day and turn back. We headed back to Suyu by bus and I decided to check out 화계사 Hwagye Temple before heading home. This is also on the Doolegil, but just slightly south of where we started. It's a nice little temple and it was clearly decorated with some of the lanterns left over from the Lotus Lantern Parade a week or two earlier.
Tying a wish to the rope to make it come true!
To hike the Doolegil, there are many places to start and it would probably be impossible to do the whole thing in one day unless you are some kind of hiking machine. This is the best map I've found, if you don't understand the Korean, ask a friend to show you the closest starting point to where you live. I started in Suyu. If you want to start at Hwagye Temple, get off at Suyu Station (Line 4) exit 5. Walk straight to the intersection and turn left. Turn right at the SK gas station up ahead. Follow the road straight for about 10 minutes and you will see the temple gates. The 둘레길 passes right through the temple. My friend recommends going south for a much more scenic view, but I went north from here.