The Shape of a Hike: How Technology Helped Me in My Natural Explorations

There was something comforting in employing technology when I hiked all these mountains. Tracking my hikes became the digital bread crumb trail that helped me orient myself. On a near-unfortunate experience on one of the mountains when the sunset beat me on my descent, technology was a source of comfort and safety, reassuring me, via GPS, that I was almost at the end of my ordeal.

After this project, when I have all of these tracks on hand, it is interesting to see the shape of all of my hikes. For me, it gives me information about the terrain I encountered, post-hike. It also tells me a lot about myself as a now-experienced hiker. In this hike on Bukhansan National Park, for example, I remember wanting to cross the mountain instead of descending the same way. Below is the shape of it. The green bubble shows where I started, and the red one shows where I ended. I smile at the little red hanging squiggle near the middle, which represented the climb to Baekundae, the peak. When I see that squiggle, I remember these micro-stories—the awe-inspiring views of nearby mountains and of the city below, as well as various emotions, such as gratitude at the kind family who helped me on my way, and amusement at the freshness of the ajusshi I ran into at the top.

More shapes coming up soon.

Bukhansan trail

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