Hiking at Songnisan 속리산

So my left ankle has been feeling much better but I never made it into the gym. I’ve been exercising three times a week at home: doing various ab work-outs, exercises with hand weights, and push-ups. It’s been going pretty well, but I’m still looking forward to getting back into the gym.

Last weekend, on Saturday, I picked a mountain (range) I wanted to climb: Songnisan (속리산) which is a National Park with multiple mountain trails to take. I chose one that supposedly had a great view of some rivers and would take about 5 hours. To get to the peak   (Cheonwangbong 청완봉) at 1,083m (3,553 ft) up, we had to walk 5.6 km (3.5 miles).


The top was absolutely stunning, but pretty cold (there was still snow on the way to the top of the mountain).

view from a cliff along the way up

On the way down, I was becoming increasingly appalled by the amount of garbage along the path. (Quite a few Koreans tend to behave like the world is their trash can. I was tempted to pick up trash along the way, but I needed my hands free for the slippery trail.) Anyway, I got a bit miffed and stopped picking my steps as carefully as I had been before. I took a step down from a good size drop (maybe about the length of my shin) and felt a pop in my right ankle.

The pain was pretty brutal, but I didn’t want to be ‘rescued.’ We still had a good 4km to go (at least 2 miles), but I decided I wanted to just deal with the pain and just leave. So, I did it. I had to pause a few times and breathe through some pain but I made it.  I even stopped to see one of the Buddhist temples at the bottom of the mountain.

the Golden Maitreya Statue of National Unification

I tried to stay off of it Sunday and then I taught on it Monday (it hurt but it was bearable).

Saturday night

I went to the doctor after school, who took some X-Rays and confirmed that there is no break; it’s just a strained ligament. The ligament is the one that goes across the top of my ankle (horizontal). I got a soft cast and a lot of pills for pain, inflammation, and a muscle relaxer. If it hurts after 9 days I have to go back to the hospital but it should heal in about 2 weeks…I hope.

Despite the injury, I would not take the day back. I loved being there.  (I uploaded some pics onto flickr. ^^)    You can read an update here  (spoiler alert, I wasn’t healed in 2 weeks).



  1. jossiejk · · Reply

    It looks like a great trek! Good for you for standing up against littering! Sorry to hear about your ankle, hope it heals up quickly and you can avoid a trip to the hospital.

    1. Thanks! Yeah, I really don’t want to go back next week…but this injury looks like it’s going to take a long time to heal. (dang it). It’s already Thursday and part of my ankle is still tender to the touch.

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