Bike Daegu to Changnyeong
Off into the country. The fourth leg of the Nakdonggang Bike Path brings you into green spaces between farms and urban outposts. Along the way, pass an ancient Confucion academy, watergates, and the river’s most challenging hills (directions).
Gangjeong Goryeong Weir to Dalseong Weir
Flow out of Daegu and into riverside parks. Cross an ancient ferry that brought the region’s first “ghost barrel.”
Glance to the river banks and find the Samunjin Ferry (사문진나루터). Now quiet, it was a bustling river port during the Joseon Dynasty (1392~1897). After unloading their cargo, merchants and sailors stopped by a (now restored) inn near the ferry to dine and drink.
Around 1900, an American missionary brought the first piano to the region via the Samunjin Ferry. Locals named the instrument “ghost barrel” because of the magic that emanated from the hollow wood. Every October, 100 pianists perform here around the many piano statues.
Dip under an overpass, over a short bridge, and pop out onto the river flanked by greenhouses.
The next 15 kilometers swing around a bend in the Nakdong, by countless farms and a local waterside park.
Dalseong Weir (달성보; Dalseong-bo) sits 21 kilometers downriver from the Gangjeong Goryeong Weir on the edge of Daegu City. It’s the sixth watergate on the Nakdong River built by the Four Rivers Project (2009~2011).
Sluice gates take up 162 meters of its 580-meter length. They prevent flooding and secure water for local farmers. Three small hydro power plants on its east side create 16 GWh of electricity annually for 1,400 homes.
Dalseong Weir to Dodong Seowon
Swirl through a riverside town, then tackle (or not) the Nakdong route’s third tallest climb. Arrive at a centuries old UNESCO Confucian Academy.
- Head left to ride the west side. Not a part of the “official route,” this path climbs and zig-zags along a ridgeline topped by a 179-meter peak (directions).
- Turn right to stay on the “official route.” Cross the bridge to the Nakdong’s east side.
Let’s stick to the “official route.” It offers a less exertive path and passes a Nakdong River highlight.
Still some daylight left? Roll on.
Here you have two choices:
- Head across the country road and climb 102 meters up Daramjae Pass (다람재). It offers a high-angle, painterly view of the Nakdong and Dodong Seowon Confucian Academy (directions; 2.5 km; road view).
- Follow a protected shoulder along the country road. It blasts through a tunnel and under Daramjae Pass (directions, 1.3 km; road view).
Took the hard route? Descend the switchbacks from Daramjae Pass and arrive near Dodong Seowon Confucian Academy.
Dodong Seowon to Hapcheon Changnyeong Weir
Roll by campgrounds and follow a wavy riverside path by an ancient pavilion. Then, before ending at the Nakdong’s sixth weir, choose a hill with a temple and a view, or country roads that save time and effort.
From Dodong Seowon Confucian Academy, the bike path flattens and curves around a bend.
Roll upon a straightaway lined with the Nakdong River Leports Valley (레포츠밸리), an auto campsite, and the gleaming Nakdong River Training Center (낙동강수련원), which teaches young and old how to camp, raft, and more.
Wind around jagged, tree-lined curves and climb an embankment with a view (road view) of the Daegu National Industrial Complex (대구국가산업단지). Samsung and LG chaebols snatched this massive plot from nature’s jaws and set up chemical, car, and electronics factories.
Next, zoom down 3 kilometers of undulating, zig-zagging bike path (directions; road view), past the 500-year-old Ino Pavilion (이노정). Near the end, a series of boardwalks glide over the river’s edge. Stop the second of two switchback climbs. Gaze back at the snaking route (road view).
Wheel onto a road with a bike lane separated by a guardrail. After 1.5 kilometers, the road and bike lane diverge (road view), presenting you with two options:
The “official route” hops the guardrail and avoids the hill. But if you’re up for adventure, stay in the bike lane. Make the climb, discover the hill-bound Musimsa Temple (무심사), and slog through a muddy patch (road view).
This weir’s management building doesn’t hold a convenience store. But it offers water fountains, an observatory, and the Hapcheon Changyeong-bo Certification Center.
Along its 328-meter, 138 meters are 11.5-meter tall rotating watergates that store water upriver during droughts, and release it during floods. Two hydro generators on the weir’s east end generate 25 GWh of electricity each year.
Hapcheon Changnyeong Weir to Bakjin Pass
Fill your water bottles. The next section runs deep into the river’s rural parts and features the bike path’s steepest climb, which provides a hawk’s-home view of the landscape.
Is the sun setting? Are your legs led? Near the end of the country road, find a motel (road view) and a tiny town with a mart and restaurants (road view). Stop here to recharge! You won’t pass civilization again soon.
After the tiny town, hop between bike paths and empty country roads as the river bends 13.3 kilometers around a horn (directions).
Up ahead, the toes of Jandeung Mountain (잔등산) extending to the riverside force the bike path inland and up Bakjin Pass (박진고개), the Nakdonggang Bike Path’s tallest and steepest climb. And unlike most other hills, this one is unavoidable.
From a base of 15 meters, follow switchback turns to a 173-meter peak (directions).
Find a lookout platform at the top (road view). Take a breather. Gaze out from the perch at the wide, winding Nakdong River.
Which way should I go? Left or right? Here are your options.
- Take a right to follow the “official route” (directions). It climbs 163 meters up the back-to-back Yeongaji (영아지고개) & Angaesil Passes (안개실고개).
- Take a left to follow a country road over an 83-meter hill.
Yeongaji & Angaesil Passes
Skim the river, then begin your ascent in the back of a tiny town (road view). Along a tree-crowded ridgeline, wind along a bike path that doubles as a hiking trail (road view). Between the passes, pause at a resting deck. Gaze out (road view).
Both routes land in downtown Namji Town.
Namji Bridge? I see three Namji Bridges!
Let’s break it down.
- Namji-dae-gyo (남지대교), or “Namji Big Bridge,” is a newer beam bridge that carries cars and cyclists south across the Nakdong River from in Namji Town’s east (road view).
- Namji-gyo (남지교) or “Namji Bridge,” sits 1.5 kilometers upriver. It sports golden trusses and allows cars and bikes (road view).
- Just below the gold-trussed Namji Bridge hangs the retired blue trusses of Namji-gyo (남지교; road view) or “Namji Bridge.” (Yes. It’s the same name.)
The “official route” uses the blue-trussed Namji Bridge, which age and technology made obsolete. Now it ushers Sunday strollers and cyclists across the Nakdong River.
(Don’t get picky about your bridges. Cross any Namji Bridge and you’ll land on the Nakdonggang Bike Path.)