25-Jun-2001 -- In continuing with the 38 Parallel theme (for more info on the this Parallel, refer to the
38N 127E confluence), I've decided to visit this confluence immediately after. True, I was quite tired, but I wanted to commemorate the 51st anniversary of the start of the Korean War like this.
Since these areas were rather void of much information from other maps, I used OnMap for a more detailed guide this time. I could see that this time, the closest road to the confluence was more than 6km away, so I was slightly worried about how to get here; but I thought that walking the rest of the way wouldn't be much of a problem. I was very wrong.
The biggest town near the confluence was Chuncheon, Gangwondo. To get anywhere around the area, I had to take a subsequent transportation from this point. Thus I took Gyeongchun Line (Seoul-Chuncheon) train first. Upon arriving, I took an intercity bus that would get me to the closest point the road would get me to the confluence - Yanggu Ferry. This was approximately 5.8 km away from the target point.
As I gazed down the location, my hopes of walking to the confluence was inadverently crushed. Gangwon-do region is known for very rugged terrain, because the 'backbone' of the Korean mountains go through, and the area reflected that same characteristics. There was a river (Soyang River) going through the mountains (hence the ferry), but there was no way I could walk along the river. The mountains just 'shoot out' of the river in a pretty much vertical manner.
So I had to pay a ferryman some hefty fare to go to the spot I wanted. He was pretty familiar with the 38 Parallel of the area, as there was actually a sign post on the mountainside that indicated the Parallel (Picture #4). However, the sign post was a bit off from the actual confluence, as it was not set up with the 128E in mind.
Steering the boat closer, I could get to within about 300m of the point. However, the confluence was not on the river, but on land. And land meant that steep, rocky mountain (Picture #5). This was very hard to climb as the rocks are already crumbled into small pieces and slide off as I stepped on them. I almost hurt myself when I was caught in a small landslide while trying to climb several times.
Going past the crumbled rocks was one thing, but after that, I was confronted with a dense forest like the previous confluence visit. Again, I tried to weave through the obstacles, but the mother nature prevented me from reaching the exact point of the location. This place was unfit for me to climb any further, and I didn't want to risk an injury. I had to be happy with getting near to about 100m from the target point. This visit was by far the hardest one I've gone through yet.