The Tour de Korea – 2012

This past Sunday, Jo and I ventured out to Incheon to catch the start of the Tour de Korea. This 1000km race spans one week and concludes on the 29th in Hanam, just outside of Seoul. Take a look at the route:

QiRanger - Tour de Korea - RouteAs can be seen in the image above, the riders will hit just about every section of Korea on their journey. Unlike the Tour de France, the TDK has no time trials, so racers are literally going all out and the first person to cross the finish line wins in this point to point race. Stages one and eight are a third of the other stages, so they’re classified as sprints.

The video for this topic was shot entirely with the GoPro in the waterproof housing. The conditions on race day were anything but good, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of participants. In fact, the electric energy just seemed to amplify. While walking around the elite training area, I saw this:

QiRanger - Tour de Korea - KoreaI though it pretty damn cool. I always wanted one! It’s a rolling system designed to allow riders to warm up their legs while remaining motionless. Several similar devices were being employed by racers, but I thought this the most interesting.

If you’re in Korea, check out the finish, I’m sure it will be pretty damn cool, since even the President came out to kick off the event.

Tour de Korea - Korea - President Lee Myung-bak - QiRanger

It’s THE Video

Podcast - Korea - QiRanger - TravelThe QiRanger Adventures Podcast: S2E12
Release Date: 2012-04-22

1) Welcome and News

2) Content RE<Wind

3) QOTW: From Emily aka @sonicphotonic: What is your perfect Sunday?

Send your questions to or @qiranger on twitter. I’ll answer them in the podcast or make a personal video response.

4) Travel Talk: This week we sit down with adventurer Mike Corey of and @kickthegrind. Learn about this dynamic travel host.

5) Thank you very much for listening. If you have a question or a comment, please send an email to or message me on twitter @qiranger. If you’ve enjoyed this podcast, I hope you’ll share it with your friends so we can grow our community. Until next time, may the road always rise to meet your feet and the wind be always at your back. Have a great day and I will talk to you soon.

Man v Machine: Steve and Hyunwoo’s Third Race

The day has come and the video is now out! Just what video? Oh, just an epic battle between two friends across Seoul. In 2010, Hyunwoo Sun and I raced from Dongtan to Gwanghwamun. In 2011, we raced on two separate trails. Up until this point, Hyunwoo and I each enjoyed a victory. So it was time for a tie-breaker match. Something epic. Something amazing.

QiRanger - Hyunwoo Sun - Filming - koreaAs the picture above implies, Hyunwoo and I would be using transportation once more to travel. Ever since the first race, I’ve known I wanted to do more with Hyunwoo. Mainly because he and I are such a good fit for these competitions. We are both highly competitive, yet take a fairly relaxed approached to the races. We also love to film and take our viewers along with us. So since this would be the third such race, I wanted to do something epic and what better way than to pit man against machine.

The idea was simple: race from Yeouido park to Jamsil. One would take the subway and the other would ride a rental bike. I had already ridden the route before for a video, so I was familiar with the physical challenge I was proposing. When I asked Hyunwoo if he was up to it, I was glad he said yes. I asked him to take the subway, since I know he’s familiar with the system and loves it.

So here’s the skinny on the race – The distance was more than 14 kilometers – closer to 16 depending if you believe Runmeter. The last time I did the ride, it took me just under an hour to make the journey. According to the various subway apps, taking Line 2 to Sincheon station from the starting point would take about 55 minutes. It’s then a 1km walk to the finish line (taxis are allowed to make up for the distance). As you can see, it looks pretty close.

Hyunwoo was free to choose any route he wished. I started doing some research and found my preferred route: Line 5 (Yeouinaru) to Line 9 Express (Yeouido) bound for Sinnonhyeon. Then transfer overland to Gangnam Station Line 2 to go the rest of the way. This journey would take 36 minutes, meaning that the total time was closer to 40 minutes. That was a lot of time I needed to shave off my time. So for the weeks preceding the race, I spent lots of time running and doing stairs.

Mikyung (Hyunwoo’s wife) was kind enough to assist in filming, as was Jo, who took a taxi to the finish line, getting their only 10 minutes before the victor. Hyunwoo used his Canon 500D, while I made use of the two GoPro Cameras and the H2 for sound. Unfortunately, the bike was a little bigger than one I had used previously, so it was a little difficult getting everything in place. This is especially with the rear camera on me, where you can see the windsock in frame. Oh well, nothing could be done about it.

Since there was a huge time gap between arrivals (I’m not going to spoil the results here – you’ll have to watch the video), it presented a little editing challenge. So I went for the split screen option and was able to time things up so we both appeared to arrive at the same time. Did you like that?

So one last thing in this post – which is the same as in the video – what’s your favorite way to see your city?

Coming Soon

This past weekend, I met up with a friend of mine…

QiRanger - Hyunwoo Sun - Filming - koreaThe above image is from the set of a new race video I was filming with my friend Hyunwoo Sun of Talk to Me in Korean. The above image gives a good idea of what’s to come… but for more fun… take a look at this:

Excited to see the results of the next race? I am! The video will be out next week, so stay tuned!

The Race to Seoul

Hyunwoo Sun and Steve Miller

This past weekend I had the opportunity to race with a friend. The whole story started a month ago, when Jo and met with Hyunwoo Sun in Seoul for a mini-gathering. At that time, he mentioned that he uses the subway heavily and oftens find it faster than any other mode of transportation in the city.

Coming from the outlying areas, I find the subway convenient, but very slow. Jo and I have spent a lot of time learning various bus routes and have found that we can get anywhere around the city faster than if we relied solely on the subway. This gave Jo the idea that Hyunwoo and I should race to see which one, the bus or subway, was the speediest method of transportation. We both loved the idea, since many Koreans only rely on the subway and most foreigners are too intimidated to learn bus routes.

But just how to go about it???

Since Hyunwoo had never traveled to Dongtan, I thought I’d invite him out for the day. He arrived Saturday morning and we spent a good two hours walking and playing around. He brought Jin Seokjin with him, and I have to say the four of us had a great time.

But it wasn’t long before it was time to get down to business. The race was simple: start from the bronze statue in the Dongtan Town Center and race to the statue of king Sejong in Gwanghwamun Plaza. Jo and I would take the bus and Hyunwoo and Seokjin would take the metro.

The entire experience was awesome and I was surprised at the result. It took me a day to edit all the footage and to see who won, you’ll have to watch the video.