Jeju-style fishing

Jeju is known for it’s women divers. Haenyeos (hen-yuh) are women that dive for shellfish, using minimal equipment. It’s pretty common to see them around Jeju, and

we’ve see them around Samyang area, when we went snorkeling near Hamdeok and here and there.

They use only a wetsuit, weighted vest and goggles, and stay under for 2-3 minutes collecting seaweed, abalone or clams with a digging hoe. Because of this physical and economic strength, these diving Jeju women have had more of a leadership and environmental advocate role than elsewhere. This article has more info, which I recommend!

…then there are the men…

At night, it’s easiest to see how the men fish. The squid trawlers dot the horizon with bright lights that attract the squid. So, when you look out to sea, bright lights look back at you. (Too far and too big to take out with a beebee gun!)

I also see men fishing anytime of day, but I hang out near the fishing area myself on these waning summer evenings. Night fishing here, the guys use a dual red and green glowing set up. The red glow looks like an LED-illuminated float. The green glowing part sinks below the surface a foot or so, with some combination of hooks and weights, I guess.

I’ve never once seen a woman fishing from the shore, though I’m sure it happens. I have seen women accompanying men. The women sit on the side watching a video on their phone, play with the kids of read a book.

But don’t you think it’s kinda funny. Women dive underwater and gather their catch. Men either drive big boats or sit on the shore.

Are men and women are equal, but different? Are men lazy or are they just smart? Are women strong or are they just overdoing it? Why do women dive and men drive?

Not sure about you, but it does make me wonder!

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