Bears Town Resort

Bears Town Ski Resort

Bears Town is the largest ski area in Gyeonggi-do (the province surrounding Seoul); if you’re looking for the biggest ‘local’ hill for Seoul, this is it, but the 90-minute bus ride from Gangbyeon does make it a bit of a stretch to call this one a local unless you live in northern Seoul and have a car.

Bears Town: the hill

Mountain stats
Highest lifted point: 460m
Lowest skiable point: 175m
Vertical drop: 285m
Lifts: 8
Runs: 10
Longest run: 2,500m (’88challenge’)
Terrain park: yes (small)
Halfpipe: no

Homepage and piste map

Bears Town piste map

The vertical drop of 285m may seem small, but it’s decent for a Seoul area hill. From two base areas a total of 8 lifts ferry skiers to the top, from where you can aim for the main base to skier’s left, or go skier’s right for the longest runs as that base is at a slightly lower elevation than the main base. As is usually the case in Korea, the base areas consist of enormous hotel and condo buildings which my seem rather out of proportion to the scale of the hill itself (as usual in Korea, it’s a golf & leisure resort as well as a ski resort), and the facilities there are excellent.

From the top lift there are a few options going down both sides, but advanced skiers will have the whole place skied out in fairly short order. There is a park, but there isn’t much to it beyond a medium kicker and a couple of jib features.

It’s a good hill for learning, with plenty of gentler terrain, and good for progressing from bunny slopes to intermediate; more advanced riders will have to make do with cruisy piste runs or sessioning the mediocre park. If that’s you, you should be able to have a fun half-day as long as you set your expectations fairly low.

Ski slopes at Bears Town Resort

Bears Town ski slopes

Bears Town is good for:

Learners and those progressing to intermediate.

Being the largest hill in Gyeonggi-do i.e. largest in the Seoul area.

Long hours; it stays open until 4am.

Freestyle (well, it at least has a terrain park)

Bears Town is not so good for:

Freestyle! The terrain park exists, but is a tame effort.

Access. For those without their own vehicles, Bears Town probably has the least convenient access among the Seoul area hills (see below)

Bears Town lift tickets

Hours: 9am – 4am!

Following the standard model in Korea, Bears Town lift tickets are available for AM, PM, Night, and Overnight blocks, individually and in combination, with a 90-minute snow grooming break at 5pm. Prices range from 59,000 for a 4-hour ticket (AM or Overnight) to 75,000 for an 8-hour ticket (AM&PM or PM&Night); details here, and here’s a photo of their 2016/17 season rates (click to enlarge):

Bears Town lift ticket rates

Bears Town: accommodation

Most visitors will probably want to stay in Seoul and take the bus to Bears Town (see below for access details); for the best rates, search Agoda for hotel deals in Seoul

Airbnb is also a great choice for Seoul – hosts usually have it set up so you can arrive & check in by yourself without having to wait around or meet anyone, and the housing standards are decent with underfloor heating and excellent internet connections as standard. If you haven’t used Airbnb before, you can get a 35-dollar discount off your first rental by signing up through Snow Guide Korea; simply click on this link and register!

If you do want to stay at Bears Town Resort itself, accommodation is available in their condos at the base of the slopes; you can check their accommodation page here.

How to get to Bears Town

Bears Town has a shuttle bus (90 minutes to 2 hours, depending where you board), but unlike other Seoul area resort shuttles it isn’t free – the price is 5,000 won return (3,000 one-way), you need to call them to make a reservation, and outside the peak season it’s only available on weekends and holidays. See here for details

Alternatively, public transport access is by bus number 11 from Gangbyeon Station (Line 2). The bus does NOT go from the large bus station at Gangbyeon called Dong Seoul (East Seoul) Bus Terminal, but rather from the bus stop just up the road (stand A).

To find the stop, come out of Gangbyeon Station exit 4 and turn right:

Gangcheon Station

Walk north (straight) for 50 metres or so and cross over; the bus stops are located on the other side of the crossing, and you should wait for number 11 at stand A:

Bus stop for the bus to Bears Town Resort

It operates from 5am to 11pm and runs every hour or so (T-money card accepted).

The ride takes around 1h 45m, and you need to get off at the penultimate stop; each stop is announced over the speakers, and fortunately the stop is called ‘Bears Town’:

Bus route for Bears Town Resort

The second-left stop reads 배어스타운 (Bears Town). Gangbyeon is shown on the far right, and note you can also board at Gwangnaru Station if Line 5 is more convenient for you (click to enlarge)

Once you get off the bus, there’s a 15-minute walk to the hill. With the main road on your left, walk past all the ski shops:

Walking up to Bears Town from the bus stop

…and then, ahembear right across the small bridge over the creek:

Walking to Bears Town from the bus stop

…and follow the access road around to the right:

Walking to Bears Town from the bus stop

When you get up to the car park and base area facilities, the ticket office is over to the right.

The schedule for the return buses, as posted on the bus stop (correct as of March 2017):

Timetable at the Bears Town bus stop

Bears Town has the usual mega resort thing going on at the base, with condo towers everywhere plus plenty of food & drink options:

Ski slopes at Bears Town

Hotel interior at Bears Town Resort

Bears Town cafeteria

Any questions about Bears Town Resort? Leave a message below!

For more Seoul area ski resorts, see here; for full reviews of every Korean ski resort, see here

Also check out the best Korean ski resorts according to various criteria, and this size comparison of Korea’s ski resorts using satellite imagery

If you’re visiting before/during the Olympics, see the top 5 hills to ski at during Pyeongchang 2018, and for more information and the latest updates on Pyeongchang 2018 see here

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