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A Week in Japan
Trip Report

A Week in Japan

 
A Week in Japan

Page Type: Trip Report

Object Title: A Week in Japan

Date Climbed/Hiked: Jul 11, 2011

Activities: Hiking

Season: Summer

 

Page By: RobSC

Created/Edited: Aug 3, 2011 / Aug 5, 2011

Object ID: 734894

Hits: 1815 

Page Score: 81.18%  - 13 Votes 

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Table of Contents

Images

Fujisan

When I was in high school, we took part in a program called the American Field Service (AFS), and twice, we had the privilege of hosting a foreign exchange student for a year within our house.  
1982 Pucture from Camel s Hump (Vermont) Summit
Ryoji, Mom and Dad in 1982 on Camel's Hump, Vermont.
One of the students, Eduardo, is from Costa Rica; the other, Ryoji, from Japan. In both cases the experience and students were wonderful. Over the course of a year living with the students, they become an integral part of the family and became brothers to me rather than people from another country.

As such, when I went to Nepal in 1993, I managed to visit Ryoji and his wife in Tokyo for a few days on the return.

As the plane left Narita airport, I was treated to a magnificent view of Fujisan. Somewhere, I remember hearing that everyone should climb Mt. Fuji (Fujisan) at least once in their lifetime, and I vowed that if I ever returned to Japan, I would make true on this.

About a year ago I contacted Ryoji and told him that I was planning to go to Korea and would love to stop in Japan to see him as well as his wife and two daughters. I told him that I also wanted to see the sunrise from Fujisan's summit, and was pleasantly surprised when he said he'd like to join me for the trip. The following pictures are from our experience.

Trees on the Slopes of Fujisan
Trees, near Station 5.

Many of the hikes that I do are alone. I tend to wake up early and go trailhead to summit and back in a single push. Although this could be done on Fujisan, most of the people who climb it set off at noon or so one day and hike to one of a number of mountain huts where they spend the night. At an early hour, they arise and hike in a lengthy mass of humanity to the summit, reaching it in time for the sunrise. We did the hike in this traditional way.

Hikers, Fujisan
Hiking low on the peak.

At 3400 meters on Fujisan
Ryoji and Myself at 3400 meters.

The Shadow of Fuji near Sunset
Shadow of Fuji from 3400 meters.

Night Hikers, Fujisan
Night Hiking

Reaching the Crater Rim, Fujisan
Dawn from Fujisan Crater Rim




Reaching the crater rim, Ryoji told me that there is actually a Japanese word (goraiko) that refers specifically to the sunrise as seen from the summit of Fujisan. The following pictures show the goraiko that we were fortunate enough to witness.

First Rays of Sunlight, Fujisan
 

Sunrise from the Rim of Fujisan
 

Ryoji and Myself at Sunrise on Fujisan Crater Rim
 



The highest actual point on the mountain is on the far side of the crater rim from where the most popular trail reaches it. At a casual pace, taking in the sights, it takes approximately an hour or 90 minutes to circle the rim.

Highest Point of Fujisan
The highest peak on Fujisan

Ryoji on Fuji s Highest Point
Ryoji on Summit with the Shadow of Fujisan behind.

Looking out from Fujisan s Crater Rim
View East from crater rim.

The View from Fujisan
View East from crater rim.



After our circuit, we descended back down to his car for the return to Tokyo, taking in a soak in a local hot spring along the way.

Looking East from Fujisan
 

Clouds, Fujisan
 

View from Fujisan
 

Kyoto

I have always heard about the splendors of Kyoto, so spent a few days in this beautiful city. I was surprised that the temples and sights that make it so famous felt to me as islands in a busy city that had a very working class feel to it. The following pictures were taken around the vicinity of Kyoto.

Lotus Flower, Kyoto
Lotus Blossoms near Kyoto.

Bambo Grove, Kyoto
Bamboo Grove, Kyoto

Bamboo Grove, Kyoto
Bamboo Grove, Kyoto

Byodoin Temple, Uji
Byodoin Temple, Uji - one of the World's most beautiful buildings!

Monument to Lady Murasaki, Uji
Monument to Lady Murasaki. She wrote the Tale of Gengi which is the World's first novel and perhaps Japan's most famous book.

Images


Comments


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mvsthat was cool

mvs

Voted 10/10

Thanks for giving a nice idea of the Mt. Fuji climb, definitely want to do that one day! Kyoto looks great too.
Posted Aug 5, 2011 12:43 am

RobSCRe: that was cool

RobSC

Hasn't voted

Thanks for the comment! It was a great trip, made especially memorable by doing it with my AFS brother. I highly recommend the trip!
Posted Aug 5, 2011 5:30 pm

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