Trail photos

Photo ofGwanaksan Photo ofGwanaksan Photo ofGwanaksan


Trail stats

6.87 mi
Elevation gain
2,047 ft
Technical difficulty
Elevation loss
1,995 ft
Max elevation
2,001 ft
Min elevation
104 ft
Trail type
One Way
3 hours 58 minutes
August 28, 2014
August 2014
2,001 ft
104 ft
6.87 mi

near Pangbaei-dong, Seoul (South Korea)

Viewed 20515 times, downloaded 129 times

Trail photos

Photo ofGwanaksan Photo ofGwanaksan Photo ofGwanaksan

Itinerary description

This was a hike from Sadang station to Gwanaksan returning by way of Seoul National University. It took about 3.5 hours at a moderate to fast pace. I was hiking alone, so I did not stop much except to get a quick picture and or way-point. Plan on 4 hours counting getting back to the subway by bus. Although it is not a long hike, I rated it moderate because it gains a lot of elevation and involves scrambling over rocks. This is NOT a hike for beginners. Also there is NO water for the entire hike so make sure you have enough with you. At the end there is a store inside the Engineering building right where the trail comes out on the Seoul National University campus.

Start off at Sadang Station, Lines 2 or 4, going out exit 4. Walk up the street about 50 m then turn right going up the hill. This road will take you to the trail head. Initially you will follow the signs for Gwaneumsa (Temple) following the road. From Sadang Station to Gwaneumsa is 0.8 miles. You will find the trail head just before the temple on the right. Don't let the "Seoul Trail" sign fool you. As you go around the temple the "Seoul Trail" will turn off to the right after about 100 m. You want to continue up the hill rather than continue to follow the "Seoul Trail" signs. The trail will start to get steep and you will soon be scrambling up steep rocks. See the pictures. Along the way there are a number of nice view points as well as pill boxes (fox holes) that are maintained by the military in case North Korea invades. You will also pass a couple of viewing platforms/ rest areas and a couple helicopter landing pads. Just before the summit the is another steep section of rocks with ropes and chains to assist you. At the summit you will find a military base (off limits) and a meteorological station (open certain hours, forgot to record the opening times). The meteorological station is worth a visit even if you don't speak Korean. There is also a summit rock with the elevation marked which makes a nice picture. The way down follows a ridge with nice views of the city to one side and a mountain forest to the other. It is also steep in places with ropes to assist you. Eventually, you will come out on the campus of Seoul National University. From there you can take one of several buses (5511, 5513, 5516) to the Seoul National University Subway Station (Line 2).


Photo ofBus Stop

Bus Stop

Get the buses to the subway from here.

PictographSummit Altitude 2,004 ft
Photo ofGwanaksan summit Photo ofGwanaksan summit Photo ofGwanaksan summit

Gwanaksan summit

Views from the top.

PictographWaypoint Altitude 1,026 ft
Photo ofHelichopter landing 1

Helichopter landing 1

Good to know where this is in an emergency!

PictographWaypoint Altitude 1,611 ft
Photo ofHelichopter landing 2

Helichopter landing 2

Good to know where this is in an emergency!

PictographWaypoint Altitude 882 ft
Photo ofKorean Flag Photo ofKorean Flag Photo ofKorean Flag

Korean Flag

The first set of stair started just past the flagpole. Also one of the pill boxes was nearby.

PictographWaypoint Altitude 1,119 ft
Photo ofBunker and view point Photo ofBunker and view point

Bunker and view point

A slight detour for a nice view point and site of bunker at the edge of a cliff.

PictographPhoto Altitude 917 ft
Photo ofPlatform 1

Platform 1

Good place to take a break.

PictographPhoto Altitude 1,639 ft
Photo ofPlatform 2

Platform 2

Another good place to take a break!

PictographPhoto Altitude 1,764 ft
Photo ofRock arch

Rock arch

A steep section with a rope going through a natural arch.

PictographWaypoint Altitude 105 ft
Photo ofSadang Station Exit 4

Sadang Station Exit 4

Sadang Station Exit 4 where the journey begins.

PictographWaypoint Altitude 147 ft
Photo ofSeoul National University Subway Station

Seoul National University Subway Station

Seoul National University Subway Station where the journey ends.

PictographWaypoint Altitude 630 ft
Photo ofSeoul National University Trail Head

Seoul National University Trail Head

Where the trail comes out of the woods. There is a store in the building where you can buy food and drinks.

PictographIntersection Altitude 467 ft
Photo ofTrail Head Photo ofTrail Head

Trail Head

The trail starts just before the Gwaneumsa (Temple).


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