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Ipseokdae Submitted on May 22nd, 2006 by skinsk Print
Type: Rock Climbs Province: Gangwon-Do City: Wonju
Park: Chiaksan Park Rating: 5.10 - 5.13 Style: Trad/sport
Views: 7526 Photos: 4 Photo(s) - Add Photos Maps: 1 Image(s) - Add Images

The prominent rock you'll see if you visit Ipseoksa (temple) is just the "tip of the iceberg", so to speak. Strolling along the boardwalk around the rock, you'll see some old pitons and evidence of early (aid?) ascents. The climbing is actually below this. Walk just beyond the turnoff to the rock and head down (if you continue straight instead of down when the path turns to dirt, you'll get to an ancient stone=carved Buddha relief). There are a handful (5?) bolted routes (10d, 11b, 12a, 10b, 10c) and some cracks (some with wooden wedges jammed piton-like with slings. . . don't know that I would trust these!!) Routes are vertical to overhanging with corners and roofs.

Chiaksan is in Eastern Wonju and has several entrances. You'll want to go to the Hwanggol Ticket Office (bus 82 from Wonju, 10X daily 6AM-8:20PM). It's just past Hwanggol Rest Area and Food Complex (restaurant village) if you're coming from the N, and past the turnoff for Seokgyeongsa (temple) if you're coming from the S. From the park entrance, follow the very steep paved road. . . when the asphalt ends, it becomes a very broken up steep concrete road that we drove up, but not without much fear, trepidation and rolling backwards (and I was with a friend who is a professional driver!) I cannot recommend anyone drive (though boy did it save time and energy!). . . It's a longish approach, but you might be able to drive part way with a good vehicle (to the end of the asphalt). At any rate, behind Ipseok Temple is Ipseok Rock with a promanade around it.

Safety Concerns
Signs on the road warn of falling rocks. As the routes are directly under the boardwalk, other things could come flying off as well.

The wooden wedges look very dodgy and I would strongly warn against relying on them for protection.

The base has some steep drop offs. Be careful! Not a good place for children.

Gear to Bring
Small to medium gear for the cracks, 12 draws and a rope for the sport routes. Helmet. Water.

Additional Comments
The climbing/base is mostly in the shade. The road to Hwanggol Ticket Office goes though a village known for it's unique restaurants. Stock up on water and snacks before you reach the ticket office and stop at one of the cool looking restaurants on the way out. Bathrooms are available half way up (where you can park if your car isn't liking the road)and just below the temple. Near the entrance there's a spot in the stream to wash off.

If you're climbing hard, this place is peaceful and charming, but has neither the quantity or quality of routes at Kan-hyon. It's a good alternative if you're seeking something new and/or quiet and/or trad.

Park entrance is W1300 and parking starts at W2000 for a car. There is (fee) camping in the park, but not close to Ipseokdae. It might be possible to camp by one of the pullouts. Of course, everything is available in Wonju.

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