Results 1 to 22 of 22

Thread: The Korean Demilitarised Zone

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default The Korean Demilitarised Zone

    Some photo's from the USO tour to the Korean Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) at the border between North & South Korea.

    Any and all feedback appreciated.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    1. At Dora Observatory, situated on a hill on the South Korean side of the DMZ. Had an awesome view into North Korea but unfortunately this is as far as the camera's were allowed to go.


    2. Dorasan Railway Station. Built ~6 years ago with ambitious plans to have passenger trains crossing over to North Korea and then connecting onto the Siberian rail network. Currently unused however with the tense relationship between the North & South.


    3. At the Joint Security Area (JSA) at the border of North and South Korea. Panmungak, the main North Korea building in the background with a lone North Korea Soldier standing out front. About -15C when I took this!


    4. Our guide in the JSA, Private 1st Class Martinez. Personnel assigned to the JSA must score high in Army aptitude tests (to weed out the trigger happy grunts I guess).


    5. The R.O.K. (Republic of Korea) guards must be at least 177cm tall and have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do or Judo. They stand with a modified taekwondo stance with fists clenched. The two guards near the corner of the buildings have only half of their body exposed to present less of a target for the North Koreans.


    6. One of the R.O.K. guards in the main conference room on the border. The conference rooms that are straddled on the border are the only places in the JSA where both sides can meet.


    7. Just the view from the window from the main conference room. The concrete marker on the ground on the far right delineates the border between the two countries so technically I'm in North Korea at this point.


    8. Another of the R.O.K. guard's at the main conference table where the two countries meet for diplomatic talks. The border runs through the table, with South Korean territory on the left and North Korea on the right.


    9. A memorial in the JSA where two US officers were killed in 1976 by DPRK solders after attempting to trim a poplar tree that obstructed the view from one of the observation points. In response the US & South Korea launched a 'show of force' with Operation Paul Bunyan. This involved a 23 vehicle convoy with 16 engineers with chainsaws, 120+ security personnel, 27 helicopters, several circling B-52 bombers and F-4 fighter escorts behind them, and one aircraft carrier stationed just offshore. Fortunately the tree was cut down to its trunk without further incident!


    10. The sun setting over the North Korean propaganda (i.e. potemkin/fake) village of Kijŏng-dong. The flagpole is the third tallest in the world at 160 meters tall.


    11. The 'Bridge of No Return' where prisoner swaps occurred after the end of the Korean War and after the Pueblo Incident. Also as seen in the movies 'Die Another Day' and 'Salt'.


    12. Back at Camp Kim in Seoul.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Auckland, NZ
    Posts
    844

    Default

    That would be an interesting experience. I bet you didn't come away feeling relaxed and safe about the state of the world politics.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Whakatane
    Posts
    6,096

    Default

    Hell yes, you do get around Dan! Great to see, I like the way the guards hang their handbags on the door knobs! Must be one hell of a job standing there glaring across the divide all day thinking bad thoughts at the enemy.

  5. #5

    Default

    What a trip and set of shots!
    Canon 5DmkII, 400L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 24mmf3.5 TS-E, Canon 70-200f2.8L, Tamron 90mm SP AF Di f2.8 Macro, Sigma 50mmf1.4 EX HSM, Nissin Di866 flash, Manfrotto 190xprob & Markins Q3t head, Lee filters, Lowepro Flipside 400AW, Yong Nuo rf 602 triggers.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    46

    Default

    Thank you for posting these, extremely interesting and great shots.

    Pauline

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Wellington
    Posts
    1,728

    Default

    Scary stuff. Why weren't you allowed to take a pic of N Korea?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Wellington
    Posts
    184

    Default

    Fantastic images.
    My Gear: 2 x 7D | EF-S 10-22 | EF 24-105L | EF 70-200 F2.8L IS | EF 300 F4L IS
    | 2 x 580 EXII | Phottix Odin Triggers |

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveB View Post
    That would be an interesting experience. I bet you didn't come away feeling relaxed and safe about the state of the world politics.
    Yep, quite an unnerving place Steve! It's only an hour or so away from Seoul where 23 million people live too, so almost 'on their door step'.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jos View Post
    Hell yes, you do get around Dan! Great to see, I like the way the guards hang their handbags on the door knobs! Must be one hell of a job standing there glaring across the divide all day thinking bad thoughts at the enemy.
    Cheers, Jos. I think the handbags are for their soju to keep them warm. Yep, the glare is apparently mandatory. They had some guards at the train station too who used to smile for photo's, but apparently some chinese tourists complained and they had to go back to scowling.

    Quote Originally Posted by rjd View Post
    What a trip and set of shots!
    Thanks, Rob. Had to time it with my NZ summer trip so was in the depths of winter and got down to -18C!

    Quote Originally Posted by Woolley View Post
    Thank you for posting these, extremely interesting and great shots.
    Pauline
    Thanks, Pauline. Was a great experience. We got to go down one of the tunnels North Korea dug under the border into the South. 74 meters down below the rock. Unfortunately no photo's allowed though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Russ View Post
    Scary stuff. Why weren't you allowed to take a pic of N Korea?
    'Military Secrecy' apparently. So the the North Koreans don't look online to see how well their artillery positions are camouflaged I guess.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jordan Moss View Post
    Fantastic images.
    Cheers, Jordan. Definitely recommend it for anyone who gets to visit this part of the world, only a day trip from the capital, Seoul.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Christchurch
    Posts
    4,649

    Default

    Cool stuff. I like the way the guys are half hiding from the snipers - it doesn't help the guy in the middle though
    Canon > 5DIII | 17-40 L | 35 L | 24-105 L | 70-200 f/2.8 IS II L | 100 L | 400 f/2.8 IS II L | 600 EX-RT | 1.4x TC III | 2x TC III

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Whakatane
    Posts
    6,096

    Default

    Yeah he must be the staunchest, capable of catching bullets with his teeth. I wonder if the guys half and half sort of go blind after a while with one eye seeing a blue building and the other on the guy at the door across the way. Perhaps they swap left to right at half time.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    That must be why the sunglasses are mandatory, so they can blink their eyes a bit but still look staunch.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Wellington
    Posts
    1,362

    Default

    Get around much Dan?
    Great set of pics. I would be nervouse carrying a long lens there in case it's mistaken for a bazooka lol.
    Lighten up!
    I shoot with Canon EOS 500 & 6D, EFS17-55 f2.8, EF35L f1.4, EF135L f2, Speedlites 580EX II & 430EX II.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    308

    Default

    Gees these shots tell a story and a half huh. Phew how lucky we are. Great shots and they have a job I don't envy.

    All the best and NZ is a great place

    Danny.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sooshee View Post
    Get around much Dan?
    Great set of pics. I would be nervouse carrying a long lens there in case it's mistaken for a bazooka lol.
    Thanks, Clarence. One lady had a 70-200 f4L, but luckily no random pot shots from the other side of the border.
    Quote Originally Posted by nzmacro View Post
    Gees these shots tell a story and a half huh. Phew how lucky we are. Great shots and they have a job I don't envy.

    All the best and NZ is a great place

    Danny.
    Cheers, Danny. They have compulsory military service in South Korea, so saw alot of young guys about in camou and buzz cuts ready for 'action'.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Napier NZ
    Posts
    1,748

    Default

    Great series. Nice whites on the snow given those buildings would have been acting like big blue fill reflectors.
    Canon 5DmkII Canon 17-40L, 24-105L, 70-200L, Canon 580EXII, JINBEI Studio strobes, Samyang 35mm, F1.4 Fuji X100S, ISKRA Medium format rangefinder

    https://www.facebook.com/RaymondPerrettPhotography

    http://raymondperrett.com/

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    2,450

    Default

    This is your best series yet, I loved it. I looked at all four corners of every picture. Great narrative too mate. I've learned something today


  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RPM View Post
    Great series. Nice whites on the snow given those buildings would have been acting like big blue fill reflectors.
    Cheers, Raymond. I looked up the average temp for this time of year before I left and it was -2C, so wasn't really expecting snow. Got a bit of a shock though when the temp was -18C on my first morning. Had to wear two hats!
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul. View Post
    This is your best series yet, I loved it. I looked at all four corners of every picture. Great narrative too mate. I've learned something today
    Thanks, Paul. Quite a surreal place to visit. The goal now is to try and visit from the other side of the border.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Auckland, NZ
    Posts
    844

    Default

    The goal now is to try and visit from the other side of the border.
    We looked into that a few years back. We were going to be in China and you can (? could) do a 5 day trip ex-Beijing that included the Mass Games if you timed it right. That would be quite something to see. Propaganda overload.
    The restrictions were nuts. No camera lenses over a certain length (100mm IIRC), no video, no talking/contact with the locals, etc. If you did anything that disrespected the regime or leaders, you'd be thrown out of the country and your guide would be given prison or hard labour. Having seen "Team America" I don't think I could last 5 days without getting the guide locked up. I also think that it's probably not a stamp you want in your passport if you ever plan on going to the US.
    Keep your eye out for the North Korea episode of a BBC doco series called "Holidays in the axis of evil". It's quite old now but it gives you an idea of what the trip would be like.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Whitianga
    Posts
    2,297

    Default

    Excellent stuff Dan..i very much like this kind of photo journalism type photography with some info attached.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Dubai/Waikato
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveB View Post
    We looked into that a few years back. We were going to be in China and you can (? could) do a 5 day trip ex-Beijing that included the Mass Games if you timed it right. That would be quite something to see. Propaganda overload.
    Yep, the tours sound like a highly controlled and polished 'glimpse' of North Korea. I would still love to go though, just to get a taste of the whole 'deity worshipping/dictatorship' thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lia View Post
    Excellent stuff Dan..i very much like this kind of photo journalism type photography with some info attached.
    Thanks, Lia. Very different from all the other tours I've been on, so much more 'real' if that makes sense.
    Canon 5DIII | 7D | 16-35mm f2.8L II | 17-40mm f4L | 24mm f1.4L II | 50mm f1.2L | 85mm f1.2L II | 70-200mm f2.8L II | 300mm f2.8L IS II | 1.4x III | 2x III | 580EX II

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Whitianga
    Posts
    2,297

    Default

    Makes perfect sense

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •