Nature & Green Energy

Mountain Blessed With Diverse, Rich Ecology

There is the Ogasan Nature Reserve in the border between Hwaphyong County of Jagang Province and Kim Hyong Jik County of Ryanggang Province in the northern part of Korea. The reserve is very diverse in ecology.

The name of Mt Oga is derived from the meaning that five beautiful peaks rise in primeval forests.

The mountain is 1,227m above sea level and on top of it is a tableland covering an area of some 10 hectares.

The annual precipitation in the area is about 1,080mm and the area has comparatively long rainy days.

Geographically, the mountain is located in the intermediate place between the northern temperate plant area and the boreal plant area and therefore it has a large number of plant species for its area.

The nature reserve covers an area of 6,500 hectares.

There are more than 200 species of trees such as fur, Abies nephrolepis, and spruce forming primeval forests.

Most of primeval forests in the world are pure stands, so such a mixed forest zone of needle-leaf and broad-leaf primeval forests as in Mt Oga, which is mysteriously located on the boundary between boreal plant area and the temperate plant area, is rare to be found.

According to Ryom Chol Hun who has studied the ecosystem of the nature reserve for decades, there are over 120 species of medicinal plants, more than 50 species of trees for timber, and at least 50 species of plants for food.

He attributes the abundance of plants in the mountain to the subtlety of its natural and geographical position and mainly to the unique and ideal soil conditions and environment.

Most of trees growing in the mountain are 300-400 years old and many trees have been designated as natural monuments including a 1,100-odd-year-old yew.

The rich flora makes the mountain a good home for lots of animals and for well over a hundred species of birds like goshawk, mandarin duck and golden eagle.

The fact that more than half of the mammal species living in the country are distributed in the Ogasan Nature Reserve is substantial evidence of the rich fauna of the area.

As it is so rich in fauna and flora, Mt Oga unfolds superb views in all seasons.

In spring the entire mountain turns into a sea of flowers and in summer thick green forests stretch as far as the eye can see. The glorious autumnal tints and forests of snow-clad trees in winter are also spectacular sights you will regret if you miss the chance to see.

Another amazing sight to behold is a mossy fallen tree by a stream with crystal-clear water. It has lots of small holes in it from which grow at least six species of trees such as Abies nephrolepis, Sorbaria stellipila, and wahoo.

Ryom Chol Hun said it is a creation nature produced for ages in the primeval forest.

At the foot of the mountain there is a village called “Aerim (loving the forests) village” reflecting the forebears’ burning love for forests.

Mt Oga is preserved as a national treasure not only as its natural ecology is graceful and wonderful but it is permeated with the high self-esteem of the Korean people.

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