Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Deokjeokdo - Island Trip

Last weekend we decided to visit an island in the Yellow Sea. Deokjeokdo is 77 km's to the southwest of Incheon's Yeon'an Pier. Unfortunately, the high-speed ferry smelled like a urinal, fortunately, we got into a private side compartment and enjoyed the 1.2 hr ride directly to the mysterious island getaway.

Upon arrival to the ferry terminal, w were offered a lift to the Seopori Beach by a Halmoni (grandmother) who ran her own yeogwon/hotel. We accepted the ride unaware of that the group of hikers accompanying the Halmoni were family members of hers expecting us to stay together. We promptly declined the invitation because they didn't seem genuine. She followed us for a while and wasn't ready to take no as the answer. Then she kept saying, "S*x, s*x, s*x..." We took a trail through the trees to the beach and lost her.

The beach was spectacular as the guidebook described. We stayed in a very rustic yeogwon right on the beach. We swam in the Yellow Sea, it appeared clean. A little sun came out, I had a few Cass's from the old women running the Beachside Yeogwon. A Good time.

The night came with our small fireworks celebration, in fact, it was July 1 - Canada Day, so Dave and I had a good reason to celebrate. It was getting cool, and we watched a modified pickup circle the bay with a Fogger smoking for mosquitoes. We took a short walk along the bay, and finally returned to our room in the Yeogwon.

The rain pounded the Yeogwon all night, I thought we might get washed away. The building was a mixture of cement, wood, fiberglass (center courtyard cover). It was noisy, I wish we had spent the night in a hotel. I listened to my MP3s to drown out the thunder and pouring rain.

The following day, at 10:00am we were standed in Seopori Beach. Dave wanted to catch the bus, I wanted to relax more. Once the bus left, I was ready to go too. Unfortunately, buses don't run often. The next bus didn't return until 2:10 pm. Then we met a Korean-Australian nurse, she was really cool and invited us into her mother's clinic for juice and tea. We stayed there until the bus was coming. The bus zig-zagged the island and we finally reached the ferry landing at 3:20pm.

Our ferry pulled up at 3:30 pm, but...it wasn't leaving till 5:20 pm. We walked to another pier and the slow boat, a car/passenger ferry pulled up. They were leaving right away, it looked clean and had relaxing patio chairs on outer decks, it looked like heaven compared to the tin-pot we had arrived on. We bought extra tickets for another 18,000 Won, and caught the ferry, yippee! We were off the island!!!

The trip would have cost 18,000 Won/each roundtrip had we bought from the correct ferry! We spend about 40,000 Won each. Hmmm. Double. It helps if you can speak Korean

The ferry was awesome, it was a 3-hour ride, it had big-screen TV's and a heated floor to stretch out on (on one deck), and there were other places to hangout or sight see through many islands. We made about 5 stops (10 mins each) picking up more passengers and cars on different islands on the return to Incheon. We slept a little too, it was great.

Overall, it was a good trip with beers, fireworks, and a beach to celebrate Canada Day. Maybe I'll return in August with Mi Sung...it would be fun to do it again. ^^++

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About the Korean-World Author

Brian Perich was an English as a Foreign Language (EFL) lecturer for a decade, father, and adventure cyclist based in South Korea.

Previously, Brian has led Canoe adventures in Quetico Provincial Park, Atikokan, Ontario, Canada (1993/1999); led Grand American camping adventures (2000); lived at Paramahansa Yogananda's SRF Ashram for 5 months (see the film "AWAKE"), formerly worked in titanium welding at Agilent Technologies, formerly worked in Winery industry in Marin County with Kendall Jackson in California; Surfing and Meditation continued for several years in California, British Columbia, South Korea, Yoga training in California 1999-2000.

Between 1994-1998 - Brian completed his own adventures with motorcycles. His motorcycling marathons took him across the United States and central/western Canada, while traveling solo over an astounding 24,000km in 60 days! Brian endured 900 mile/1300km average days in the motorcycle saddle and apparently loved every minute of those adventures.

Today, he has given up motorcycle adventures altogether, but finds an outlet for his enthusiasm in outdoor recreation while bicycle touring and micro-blogging about those experiences on his mountain bikes.

While employed as an English teacher in South Korea, Brian has became an advocate for bicycle touring on his mountain bikes. The Korean-World blog originated from those small adventures in Korea, now expanded to cover his recent trek down the TransMongolian highway to the Gobi Desert, cycling 900km east through the Khentii grasslands and in 2012 crossing Mongolia in 45 days, 2500 kilometers 1553 miles. HimalayasX expedition Brian previously cycled across western China, the Taklamakan Desert, the northern Himalayas of East Turkestan Xinjiang/Uyghur Autonomous Region, the corrugated back roads and mountains of Kham Tibet. Brian successfully completed his 2011 mountain bike expedition with 3200 kilometers / 1988 miles unsupported, on/off road MTB adventure cycling.
Brian has completed his second mountain bike journey, MongoliaX expedition - Crossing Mongolia 2012, an unsupported mountain bike MTB expedition across 2500km of Outer Mongolia from Ulanbaatar to Altai Taven-Bogd National Park bordering China, Russia and Mongolia.

In 2013, as a sequel to a trilogy of cycle tours, Brian enjoyed a more leisure bicycle tour onboard his Koga-Miyata World Traveller seeing the northern tier of the United States and western Canada covering 3400 kilometers / 2000 miles in 30 days. This North American cycle tour was called Totherocktour. Enjoying the adventure of bicycle travel and every great conversation started while traveling on the road - has refueled his inspirations to cycle around the Earth. In 2013, while he cycled solo from the Great Lake State of Michigan, United States to Banff National Park in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. He weaved through local communities and reconnected with friends, family and community after spending almost a decade in Asia.

Brian is now supporting several non-profit foundations through expeditions: IDEAS Foundation of Canada IDEAS is the acronym for Intestinal Disease Education and Awareness Society which supports the IBD community, those suffering from IBD-inflammatory bowel disease, also known as Crohn's and Ulcerative Colitis.

The second non-profit foundation is ETE.ORG - Education Through Expeditions, UK which supports educational outreach programs inside schools around the world. ETE connects explorers with students in the classroom, through an interactive online program in development (Beta).

Brian is researching support for a 18000 kilometer bicycle expedition across the Americas: North, Central and South America - ONE -Arctic to Argentina
Please contact him if you are interested in helping out.

Twitter: Cycleagain
Location: Gangneung, Gangwon-do, South Korea or southern Ontario, Canada.

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Brian's friends have also been...Cycling in Korea!

Brian's friends have also been...Cycling in Korea!

Cycling in Korea, Warning: always wear a helmet! (I gave mine to my friend)

Cycling in Korea, Warning: always wear a helmet! (I gave mine to my friend)

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