@Karl I was all set to go (thinking it was a 5km hike from Shibusawa Station), then looked at the map! I was thinking of going on my bloody foldup. Um, not a good idea. As it was, work conspired to ruin my plans and I will be pounding away on the keyboards.
Have a great time, guys!
Met Sean at Shibusawa and rode to the trail. Began the walk up to Nabewariyama. First few kms were good, with flat paved road. Eventually it turned to uneven stone, stair-climber-like path. About a km before the summit, it is pretty steep grading. But with tiles on the line, there is no turning back.
Next up is Ameyama. This section of the trail was much less frequented since most people (the smart ones), went on to Tonodake directly and skipped the circle route we were taking. This trail had a lot of descent and sections with chains to help descend some more vertical sections..(as you can see in Sean's pictures). We descended to the valley again, losing altitude and knowing we'd have to climb back up to Tonodake. But first, 'we' ( I ) HAD to get those tiles. So we did a pretty quick trek along the river toward the other side of the tunnel that thwarted our effort a couple weeks ago. Tiles achieved.
Now we doubled- back along the river bed. The trail was good so we made good time. One more detour for a tile. Not too far. We walked the stone riverbed to the dam. Had to climb a pretty dodgy jerry-rigged ladder to continue, but nothing was going to stop us (me) from getting that tile, given how inaccessible it was otherwise. Tile achieved.
Now, we realize it is getting rather late and Tonodake is still ahead. Since our motto is, "In for a penny..." we decided to go for it vs. taking the shorter route back over Nabewariyama. Sean, being a cross between a mountain goat and camel, needed neither rest nor water. Me...not so much. (Later, I discovered Sean had a blown shoe and, amazingly, was doing the whole trek while trying to keep his foot from escaping his shoe.) The trail was pretty rock-strewn and steep, so making good time was not really possible (for me). Finally, got to Tonodake at 5:00 pm. Totally misted over and in the clouds. No time to waste, so we started down. We passed a hiker coming up who told us to be careful, but we figured we'd be at the end of the trail just about twilight.
I've discovered that descending is as hard as climbing, but for a different reason. Different muscle groups being used. So, down we go... Sean bounding ahead like a deer....me more like a koala. We're losing time and daylight. The entire descent is a descending stairway with uneven rocks carefully placed to make sure that if you go quickly you'll turn a knee or ankle. Still 4 km to go to the bikes.
It's dark now. Bike lights come out. My legs are like rubber but on we go. Eventually, we reach civilization again, retrieve the bikes and are back at Shibusawa in time to catch the express back home. Long day by the time I got back home. A hot bath never felt so good.
It was a great day... and once my knees, legs, back, feet, etc. etc. etc. recover. it will be time to do the last push for the remaining mountain tiles.... Hirugatake!
Total, 29.9 km.... 18 km hiking.
4 new tiles. Max square 23x23
Yet another bike-hike planned for this weekend. Gotta make hay while the sun shines...or at least before the rainy season, summer heat and fall typhoons hit.
So, this Saturday... Hirugatake (1650 meters high). The plan is to rinko to Fujino, ride to the base of the hike, hike to/from Hirugatake, return either to Fujino or ride back to city (depending on mood).
The hike is just under 13 km round trip with 1221 m of climbing, according to Strava...which usually overestimates the climb.
Komoot says a round trip of 8.15 miles, 3,725 ft of climbing and estimates a 5h 32 min total hiking time.
If interested, PM me and will set up meet time. I figure to be at Fujino around 8 or 8:30 so on the trail around an hour later which should allow for plenty of daylight remaining by the time the hike portion is finished. (Had enough of hiking in the dark.) Lots of steep sections so forewarned is forearmed.
If I don't hear from anyone, then have a nice weekend. Another beautiful day for cycling.
I'll be at Fujino at 7:56 tomorrow morning. 14 km to the trail by bike so should be about a 9:00 start for the hike. Since this is about 4.5 km shorter than our last excursion, hopefully finished with plenty of daylight left.
Great hike yesterday. https://www.strava.com/activities/2395282876 The trail we took was not nearly so difficult as last week's. Instead of rough, uneven stone, yesterday's trail was mostly dirt path with a thin layer of pine needles. Started out with a steep slope but no ropes or chains needed. The ridgeline before Hirugatake offered great views of Fuji and the mountains before it. Perfect weather and a great trail. Got to the summit by 1:00 after starting at 9:30 and we were back on the bikes by 3:30. Rode back from there.
14.5 km hiking. About 70 km biking (for me). Max square up by 1, to 24x24.
Tried using Komoot yesterday and it was pretty nice. It allows for downloading the route to the phone and gives a pretty good assessment of trail difficulty, surface type and approximate time to complete the hike.
I hope no bike thieves deduce our starting location from this forum and start looking in the woods around the trailhead
Tree scratches from a bear or a giant house cat? You decide.
In the Tanzawa mountain high...
And so there's no doubt this was in Japan: