Bike Gumi to Daegu
The hop from Gumi to Daegu is the shortest along the Nakdong Bike Path. It connects two of the region’s most profitable cities, while passing a few weirs and war memorials (directions).
Gumi City to Chilgok Weir
The next segment of bike path flows by Gumi before sailing through riverside parks to Chilgok Weir and war memorial and museum.
Roll to the west end of Sanho Bridge (산호대교) and into the eastern edge of downtown Gumi.
Here you have two choices:
- Head into town for food, rest, or to check out Geumosan Provincial Park (금오산도립공원). There, a cable car will take you up Geumo Mountain (금오산), where you’ll find trails, temples, and waterfalls.
- Or continue along the Nakdonggang Bike Path.
Let’s take option 2.
From Sanho Bridge, follow a switchback ramp (road view) down to the riverside and ride south until South Gumi Bridge (남구미대교). Climb an observation tower (road view) to the bridge’s deck and cycle across.
On the east side of the river, just beyond a gas station and rest stop, the route curls around and under South Gumi Bridge (road view).
Over the nearby road sits Chilgok Patriots & Peace Memorial (칠곡호국평화기념관). The complex includes two museums, sculpture, square, and more. It commemorates the 55-day-long Battle of Tabu-dong which raged during the Korean War.
Battle of Tabu-dong
In June 1950, the Korean People’s Army (KPA; North Korea) launched a surprise attack on the South.
Unprepared, within two days, the Republic of Korea (ROK; South Korea) and UN (United Nations) armies fled Seoul and fought a series of losing battles as the KPA pushed them further and further south.
Later known as the Battle of Tabu-dong, the fiercest conflict occurred here along the Pusan Perimeter. It claimed 27,000 people.
In September 1950, UN and ROK forces swung around the peninsula and invaded Incheon, allowing the troops pinned behind the Nakdong River to break out and reconquer lost land.
The weir measures 348 meters, with 200 meters of movable beams regulating the river’s flow, and a 452-meter maintenance and pedestrian bridge overtop. A pair of hydroelectric plants capture 15.4 GWh of juice per year to power 14,000 homes.
Bridge of Patriotism
During the Korean War, retreating ROK troops exploded the bridge to halt the North Korean Army’s advance. Many refugees who were still crossing perished. Chilgok County dedicated the rebuilt bridge to them.
Saddle up. The next 10 kilometers follow a monotonous stretch: tallgrass and riverside. However, three inland detours liven up the route.
First detour! Along the river, cruise 1.5 kilometers beside the thick of Waegwan Town. Then clamber over the waterside park and scoot into Waegwan Town (directions).
Today, Waegwan Abbey maintains its German roots. If you spend the night with the monks, you can dine on their famous sausages and learn of their publishing, education, and social work.
Head back to the river. Continue 6 kilometers south down the straightened river and find the second detour to a second Catholic church.
Gasil Catholic Church
Headed by a German priest, Gasil is one of the oldest Catholic churches in the region. Starting as a pint-sized hancok in 1895, parishioners built today’s church in 1922. Unlike other congregations, the church prays to Saint Ana, the Virgin Mary’s mother.
Carry on down the Nakdong. Cycle below a shady, tree-lined section as the waterway swivels east. Then travel through parks, around a solar panel array, and below a riverside mountain with rock-faced walls (aerial view).
Gangjeong Goryeong Weir (강정고령보; Gangjeong Goryeong-bo) is the longest Four Rivers Project weirs. It sits in the Gangjeong Amusement Park (대구강정유원지) on the edge of Daegu Metropolitan City (대구시) near the ARC Cultural Center.
The watergate measures 954 meters. Beams totalling 120 meters rise and lower to control water levels up and downriver. Like other weirs, two small hydro plants capture about 3,000 kWh of electricity a day and feed it to 3,000 households.
Midway down the boardwalk, roll into a fenced tunnel (road view). To your left, an intake station sucks tons of water for nearby Daegu-ites to drink.
Now you have three options:
- Continue along the Nakdonggang Bike Path and ride from Daegu to Changyeong.
- Venture into downtown Daegu for sustenance or a snooze.
- Beware! You’re on Daegu’s outer edge. By bike, it takes an hour or more to reach the city’s heart (directions). Is it the weekend? Hop on a subway. It isn’t faster, but it saves the effort.
- Or you can mill around the Gangjeong Amusement Park for a bit. Here find:
The ARC Cultural Center (디아크문화관) perches on a teardrop bit of land at the bottom of Gangjeong Amusement Park. It overlooks the convergence of the Nakdong River and Geumho River (금호강), which flows along the northern border of downtown Daegu City (대구시).
Maybe the most striking bit of architecture along Korea’s four major rivers, The ARC’s name is an acronym that stands for Architecture of River Culture.
Daegu Metropolitan City
In the past, the city sought to transform their textile industry into fashion. They nicknamed Daegu Korea’s “Fashion City” and created a fashion fair.
Because Daegu sits in a basin far from large bodies of water, its summers are the hottest in the nation. However, this subtropical climate helps grow the city’s famous apples.