Monday, October 08, 2012
It was flat. It was mountainous. It was isolated. It was beautiful.
In short - it was the experience of a lifetime (my third one)!
It almost didn't happen.
Thursday, Oct 4 - one day before the start of our tour, I found out that our original route through the bottom half of Korea was blocked. It was a major industrial accident (a hydrocloroform gas leak from an industrial plant 5 km from our bike path) that blocked our way south. So after some discussion, we decided we would get our bikes to the Andong Dam, then after riding 65 km to the west, we would turn north instead of south and ride back to Seoul.
So here I sit, 310 km later, relaxing at Starbucks, drinking my hot chocolate, and reflecting on my last 4 days. Some of my thoughts about the trip (in no random order):
- Going with several friends was good. Going with several close friends that spoke fluent Korean was priceless.
- We overpacked (just a little), but we had what we needed when emergencies came up.
- Carrying spare tubes and tires was absolutely essential.
- When you are the only 'pure white guy' on the trip, you need to try and be as flexible as you can with the menu (I tried, I really tried guys).
- We need to do a much, much better job of planning the route. Two of the four days we rode about 90 km just to find an acceptable hotel to say at.
- Hotels in Korea are pretty flexible about bikes.
- Very surprisingly, Korean drivers were very courteous when passing us.
- I still DO NOT LIKE TO CLIMB.
- No matter how remote you think you are in Korea, you always have cell phone connection.
The ride was great. After I get my pictures transferred from my iPhone, I will post them - hopefully by tomorrow.