Han River Ice and Snow

Walking on Frozen Han River

With a cold front coming down from Siberia, we had some of our chilliest temperatures in a while here in Seoul. This winter has been mild by any standard, with plenty of days well above freezing. But this cold snap froze the Han River and covered the ground in ice for at least a week. Even as I’m writing this, almost a month later, parts of the river still haven’t thawed completely.

Most years, I find myself in South, or South-East, Asia during the coldest months in Korea. It is the time of year when business is quiet and I can escape to a warmer climate to work on Tattoos of Asia. This year, however, the pandemic has prevented that respite from Seoul and I took the opportunity to photograph the river at this time. I hope you’ll enjoy the images.

Seoul Tower Sunrise - Frozen Han River
The sun rises over a frozen Han River, illuminating Seoul Tower and the peaks of Bukhansan National Park.
Riding beside the frozen river
People still enjoy exercise at the warmer times of day as the Han River begins to freeze.
Paddle Boats - Frozen in Place
Summer’s paddle boats are frozen in place by the cold snap.
Sunrise Reflected in Frozen Han River
Buildings reflected in the ice at sunrise.
Man Walking on Frozen Han River
A daring gent takes a walk on the newly frozen river.
Cracked Surface Ice
The river begins to crack on a warmer afternoon.
Emergency Services Breaking Ice
Emergency services do laps in their boat to prevent the depot from freezing.
Exercise and Frozen River
A sign proclaims that “The Han River is a safe place thanks to your social distancing.” as a loan woman stretches.
Birds and Olympic Bridge
Early morning flight.
Cheongdam Bridge with frozen river
The Seoul Metro never stops.
Sunset with frozen river
The sun sets over Olympic Bridge and Lotte Tower.

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