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Out of the Cave

We’ve been experiencing some glorious spring-like weather lately, so I decided to step out of my cave a few days ago and head on down to the Expo 2012 site to see what kind of progress is being made in preparation for next summer’s big event. The day started out overcast, but ended in some nice sunshine, so the earlier photos I took that day are a bit drab.

First, here’s a look at what the site is supposed to look like when it’s finished. As always, click on the images to get a larger version, especially this one in order to be able to read the map legend.

So, let’s start walking down the hill toward the site, near Odong Island. The first photo looks down on the site from just below the bizarre “whale” church. You remember the whale church, don’t you? Here’s a shot of it I took last year, in case you forgot what it looks like.

Here’s a photo of the area showing where we’re at in relation to the site.

We’re way up in the left corner, near the white structure with the thumb-like appendage sticking up. So, what does the site look like from there?

You can see Odong Island in the background with all the construction cranes working on the site. I counted a total of 18 cranes in operation, so work is proceeding apace, although only a few buildings are going up right now. The new hotel is at the far right and the green construction area just to the hotel’s left must be the aquarium, according to the map. If you enlarged the map, were standing a ways above number 9. So, let’s walk down to the site and go out to the island, just for the heck of it. We’ll climb up Jasan Park later and get some better shots of the site.

A new extension onto the jetty, with lighthouse, has been constructed, but it’s still being worked on and not yet open to the public. Here’s a couple of shots of it.

The airplane propellers at the top of the poles are wind-driven generators that provide electricity for the lighting. Here’s a closer view of the lighthouse.

Okay, let’s walk back and climb the steps to Jasan Park. On the way, from the causeway, we can see the new hotel going up (number 19 on the map).

Halfway up the steps, we get a better view of the site.

Now at the top of Jasan, here’s another view. Compare it to one taken last year, which follows the first one below.

There are a few noticeable differences–the new road snaking its way farther toward the site, a new building in the foreground, and other spot-the-difference details.

Well, now, as long as we’re here, let’s hike over to the other side of the park and see if the new bridge has been completed. Here’s a map of the park, by the way.

The previous two photos were taken from the path above number 12 on the map, the statue of the legendary Korean Admiral Yi Sun-shin.

Let’s continue along the path . . . whoa, what the heck’s that?

Ahhh, it’s one of the several monuments to Korean and international military veterans of the Korean War. This particular one, seen in silhouette against the sun, is number 5 on the map.

Alright, here’s a somewhat clear shot of the new bridge from Dolsan Island to the mainland. Hurray, it’s finished and the engineers got the two extensions to meet up in the middle! :smile: It’s not open yet, since there’s no sign of a road going anywhere on this side.

Well, I hope you enjoyed our little walk. I’ll continue to post more photos of the ongoing construction of the Expo 2012 site, so stayed tuned for more later.

One more shot, though, to show the potential of HDR photos, about which I posted here. You can get some pretty surreal effects from HDR photography, but the photo below shows a more normal use. It’s of the hotel taken from inside the pagoda, number 13 on the Jasan Park map. If I had exposed optimally for the interior details, the background highlights would have been “blown out (overexposed);” if I had exposed for the highlights, the interior details wouldn’t have been visible (underexposed). My camera’s dynamic range could not take in both the shadow details and the background sky details in the same shot, though my eyes could easily see both. HDR (high dynamic range) to the rescue.