Maritime

Taedong River Cruise

During our spring 2012 trip I arranged a private lunch and boat cruise along the banks of the Taedong River from central Pyongyang to its outskirts; our guides and boat crew seemed completely unconcerned about our photography (our guide Ms Han seemed just as fascinated by the cruise as we were). Below are some of the amazing shots of daily life and work on the Taedong River, North Korea:

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

Local scene along the Taedong.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

A worker and his dog on a river dredge.

USS Pueblo and Bucket Dredge

Bucket dredge working in front of the USS Pueblo.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

Working on a river dredge.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Working on a river dredge.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Pipeline river dredge.

Taedong River 대동강 Dredge

Working on a river dredge.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Moving cargo off a river boat on the Taedong.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

Ship on the blocks on a Taedong River shipyard.

Military Wash North Korea

Soldiers doing their laundry on the river bank.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

A working rowboat on the Taedong.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

Locals fishing on the Taedong.

Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea

Bridge and trams over the Taedong.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Recreational rowboats on the Taedong.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Recreational rowboats on the Taedong.

Taedong River Pyongyang, North Korea

Recreational rowboats on the Taedong.

North Korean Guide Ms Han

A fascinated Ms Han takes in the river scenery.

North Korean Guide Ms Han

For anyone who wants to arrange a similar trip please make sure you negotiate the cost of the cruise beforehand, I was a bit surprised to be handed a 600 Euro bill 45 min. into the cruise.  I promptly had Ms Han turn the boat around and requested a recalculation for fuel saved for heading back early.  A few phone calls later our bill came out to about $20 per passenger, an entirely better deal and completely worth it for the experience – please note that a lunch on the boat while moored, i.e. no river cruise, is included with the cost of your tour, no extra fee expected.

All photos by Joseph A Ferris III


Traditional Fishing Boat Wonsan, North Korea and Vacation!

The view of the Pacific Ocean from my stateroom porthole this morning reminded me of the calm seas off the city of Wonsan where this traditional North Korean fishing boat works.

Wonsan Boat North Korea

Photo by Joseph A Ferris III

After 4 months of duty as a Chief Mate on a scientific research ship voyaging on expeditions from Chile, Galapagos, and out of Southern California, I made my final arrival this morning and have officially started 3 months of vacation!  I fly back to Maine to visit my family for two weeks, and then start the real adventure: two and a half months traveling around the Netherlands, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, Malta, Iran, Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Georgia, Turkey, and Lebanon.

North Korea isn’t in the itinerary this time around, maybe in 2013, but I’m excited to make a visit to Iran.  A little less strict than the DPRK, Americans are still required to have a guide there.  I’m going with the owner of Young Pioneers, a tour company that specializes in trips to the DPRK and other hard to reach places.  This is their 2nd trip into Iran, and after hearing stories about their first trip over beers at the Pyongyang micro brewery, I decided this trip was a must if my schedule could work it.

Expect a page here in the future with pics and a travel log from this Fall 2012 adventure!


Back to Work at Sea

I try to post something new and original on a daily basis here at the American in North Korea blog, but my four month vacation is over and I will be intensely busy with my normal job until I get set into my new routine – working as a Chief Mate on an ocean going ship.

North Korean Fisheries

To celebrate getting back to work (it’s my birthday today too – 36 years if you must know) I have posted the above photo, a Korean peninsular map – with Pyongyang indicated by a star, that shows the various ocean species and fisheries found in the Korean region.  I found this map in a small museum at the Wonsan Songdowon Children’s Camp – many more pics from there to come.


Post 101

Is this really post 101?

At An American in North Korea I have tried to post something new and original on a daily basis. For the most part I have succeeded – but damn have I been busy lately!  My ship is coming out of dry dock and I have been run ragged getting her cleaned up and ready for sea again.

Unfortunately I am also starting to run out of original material and photos to post. But  don’t worry!  I still have some ideas for when things quiet down and there is a Spring trip to the DPRK being planned!

Taedong River Traffic North Korea

Posting a picture of the North Korean maritime industry as a reminder that no matter how crazy and busy things get on my ship I always have something to be thankful for!


North Korean River Traffic

We made arrival in Durban, South Africa this morning after three weeks spent studying the Agulhas Current. I expect to be busy for the next few weeks as our ship goes to half crew and prepares for a shipyard and dry docking period, but I will continue to try to get at least something up daily – look for an original picture with a little commentary at a minimum.

In honor of our arrival from a three week voyage, I’m posting a selection of photos of the North Korean maritime industry on the Taedong River – all taken from out of my window at the Yanggakdo Hotel.

Boat and river dredge operations on the Taedong River, DPRK, North Korea.

Taedong River Traffic, Pyongyang

North Korean River Dredge

North Korean River Dredge

North Korean River Dredge