Just for clarification on my previous post. There are lockers available at the Kawaguchiko train/bus station in town, that will accomodate typical "carry-on" type luggage.
If you are planning on doing a day hike at Mt Fuji and are departing from Kawaguchiko Station, they have lockers that are large enough to fit a typical black square roller type carry-on luggage.
Off season solo ascent in perfect conditions, plenty of snow, cold but calm and clear conditions.
Up in cool and rainy weather, down in sunny weather via the Sunabashiri sand slide, which was very cool.
Over 2 days. Starting from Kawaguchiko 5th station via the Yoshida trail. Overnight stay at an 8th station hut with an early morning summit. Descending route was via the Fujinomiya trail.
Arrived at the Kawaguchiko 5th Station in the late evening, and tried to find a open room at the hut lodges within the station. Decided to use the remaining hours of daylight and head up to prepare to view the sunrise from the summit. We stopped at the 8th Station and turned around when the winds on the summit picked up speed and it began to look dangerous continuing upward.
I will have to get the summit next time. Can't wait to try some of the other Japanese mountains.
Climbing Japan's highest peak itself was not that exciting, but the view from the top is to die for. For anyone planning a climb of Mt. Fuji, I've compiled a page with the most frequently asked questions (FAQ): http://www.garyjwolff.com/climbing-mt-fuji.html
Best wishes !!
The park officially opened in July, but this year there was extra snow, so it wasn't going to open on time. There was a good trail about 2/3 up the mountain, but then it turned to snow/ice. I met three people on their descent, and after that I had the mountain to myself.
Led 3rd Platoon Echo Company of 2/9 up the mountain as part of battalion hike
Mt. Fuji winter solo ascent via the Yoshidaguchi trail. Starting from all the way down in the town of Fujiyoshida. The hike was over a 3 day period requiring on-mountain camping at Umagaeshi and then somewhere below the 8th station for a final push to the summit. As luck would have it, over the course of the 3 days the weather was perfect for a winter climb.
The Japanese say regarding climbing Fuji "Once wise, twice fool" is certainly true. The night climb is unreal, with gruops of japanese with flashing lights, people with oxigen etc. But we climbed during a moon eclipse and it was magical. The sunrise is also really spectacular.
My first country highpoint. Hiked with the masses and spent the night at one of the huts near the top. The trash and crowds left me with the feeling that Fuji is best admired from a distance.
I must have been 11 or so while my dad was stationed in Japan at Yokosuka Naval Base. I climbed with my Aunt who came to visit in '85. I will have to look back at some of the pictures to see if I can nail down a date. I remember it was pretty cool, but didn't have any idea how tall it really is. I still have my "Fuji Stick" walking stick with all the stamps on it. My father in law is now stationed in Yokosuka and I may have to plan a trip to "visit" and climb again as an adult.
Climbed in the busiest time in August. During O-bon, several thousand people climb Fuji per day. Sunny and hot ascent from 5th station of the Fujinomiya route. Tried to climb from Fujinomiya but couldn't find any trail after half a day hiking towards Fuji. Slept the night in the forest and went by bus the next morning to 5th station.
Very intersting experience to be on a mountain top of this height and that number of people.
We had beautiful weather all the way up, then awoke at the top to a bit of snow, which cleared just as the sun started to come up. Standing there watching the sun rise and watching the long lines of climbers with identical headlamps snaking down the trail is soemthing I will never forget. Somehow the crowds of people that we encountered doing this during the summer actually added to the experience by making us feel like we were part of a pilgrimage, rather than just hitting another peak.
We are going to night-climb Fuji-san the last weekend in May (off-season). We are preparing climbing-crampons as we are expecting snow / ice condions.
I read from several sources that transportation is limited during this time of the year (Tokyo to Kawaguchiko). We are planning to take a taxi / private car instead.
What are your experience with off-season (May/ June) night climbs? How many climbers are on their way and is the route (ice / snow) marked?
Thanks a lot in advance for any feedback!
Good winter climbing with soft snow above 2600m and icy around summit. We start crampon climb from 6th station at 6:00 and was at last station from nord at 12:00. One hour trip to highest point (3776 m) and full circle back around the crater. Very good and warm weather but strong wind.
Not many people, because off-season.
Landing in Narita around 2pm, caught bus to Shinjuku, then 2 trains to Kawaguchiko by 8pm. We started at station 5 around 10pm after getting dropped off by a very hospitible local climber. Many cars and beaming headlamps -always a good sign. Averaged stations 6, 7, 8 each in about an hours time at an average pace. No rain, mist or winds to speak of and a comfortable yet brisk temperature to sweat in. Climbing partner fell backwards once and was feeling effects of altitude when we came across a 3000meter bunk hut. After hot Japanese tea and a toast off, I climbed into thinner air while he decided to rent a room at 6,500 yen. Lots of stars to gaze at above bellowing clouds. Lots of climbers bottle-necking as dusk approached. 1 1/2 hrs for stations 9 and 10 each, then reached a windy crater rim (30kts). 1hr walk circumnavigating top to see sunrise at 05:20am from highest point: an abondoned weather station opposite station 10. 2hrs back down to station 8 to wake sleeping comrade, then another 2hrs to trailhead parking lot. Caught bus at 11:30 to Kawaguchiko for our suitcases.
Beautiful crisp pre-dawn start on solid packed snow to summit. We had the summit to ourselves and did the circuit of the crater. We got 'lost' on the way down and had to rely on GPS to find our way back to starting point. We luckily managed to jump on a tourist bus on the way down which is rare in the off season.
After two weeks at sea, we climbed Fuji overnight without food or water. We made it, but will be sure to prepare better next time.