I first arrived in South Korea as an English instructor in 2000, based in the major city of Daegu, before moving to the quieter surrounds of Andong, and developing a taste for the Korean rural lifestyle.
In those early years my time outside of work was spent on epic motorcycle trips across the country, in search of mountains, remote villages, and good Dongdong-ju.
Hiking the National and Provincial Parks introduced me to the connectivity of these major mountains through hiking ribbons which mark the Baekdu-daegan ridge, and after obtaining a crude map of its course, a dream was formed to walk the long trail.
In 2007, fellow New Zealander Roger Shepherd and myself walked the full length of the South Korean Baekdu-daegan, the result of which is the Baekdu-daegan Trail guidebook, published in 2010.
During the writing process I moved to the eastern city of Pohang, and spent 20 weekends walking north on the Nakdong-jeongmaek Trail, a subsidiary ridge of the Baekdu-daegan, stretching some 500km from Taebaek in Gangwon-do to the ocean in Busan.
My interest now is in hiking and researching the 100명산, South Korea's 100 most celebrated and sacred peaks, a mission that is taking me to a lot of new mountains, as well as re-visiting some old favourites. My goal is to produce a complete guide to the 100명산 for day and weekend hikers, and my initial drafts and research will be published on this site. Thus far I've completed the field research for approximately 60 of these mountains, so there's a way to go for this weekend warrior!
I hope the content on this site is useful, and inspires a few to get out into the hills.