Namtong-dong, Gumi-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do.
Gumosan National Park.
|Guided tours:||self guided|
|Address:||Doseongul, Namtong-dong, Gumi-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do.|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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|1592-98||cave used as a hideout by refugees fleeing the Japanese during the Imjin war.|
도선굴 (Doseongul) is a small cave high up in the mountains, which was used as a hideout for centuries. It was named after a monk named Doseon.
According to legend Great Monk Wonhyo Daesa spent some time meditating in cave. National Master Doseon Guksa lived here for a short time while working on the theory of Pungsu-jiri-seol. This is Korea's adaptation of Feng shui. Later it was the hideout of Gil Jae (Kil Chae). He was a loyalist of the last Goryeo (Koryŏ) King of the Joseon (Chosŏn) dynasty.
The rocks are rhyolites, which are not soluble, so this is not a karst cave. It's a tectonic cave formed by two huge boulders. The cleft between the two rock is narrow but rather high, shaped triangular. There are blocks stuck in the upper end of the crack, which gives it a cave-like appearance. Nevertheless, the ceiling is not water-tight, so the cave offers no protection from rain. In other words, it was used for meditation but never as a hermitage. The cave contains a triangle shaped shrine area where candles, incense burners and small statues are placed.
The cave is located in a cliff, high above the valley. It is part of the Gumosan National Park. The site is reached from the valley with the Gumosan Cable Car. From the upper station it's a short walk to the Haeunsa Temple, then a narrow trail along the cliff face to the cave. The trail is narrow and steep, but it has an iron railing. Good walking shoes and surefootedness are advisable. Other sites nearby are the Yeonghongjeong Mineral Spring and the Daehye Waterfall.