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KT5 - Tanzawa-ko loop...

A very nice write up Travis showing considerable memory. The day was pretty longish and full of many different rides: the descent from HonAtsugi along the dual carriageway; the gated bit with the small streams of water flowing over the road with rocks scattered here and there; the hellish ascent up to Mikumi and the descent downwards with the majestic views of Mount Fuji; the return towards Tokyo along the 413. I enjoyed it all (with the exception of the one blip) immensely.

By myself I would have given up on several occasions so it was good of you guys to pull me up and graciously wait at the summits. It was also very nice to meet Phil and Christoph for the first time.

Just out of curiousity, are most of you riding on a 12-27 set up? While I've joined a gym to try and improve my overall level of fitness, I'm wondering about a couple of extra rings at the back to help me a little up the rather interesting ascents that are sometimes introduced.
A tougher climb than Mikuni-toge

TOM, Terry: maybe you guys know some tougher ones… Please let us know!

Always enjoy reading YellowGiant's travelogues!

Having never tried Mikuni-toge, I may be criticized for being a "kuwazugirai," but perhaps Oodarumi-toge 大弛峠 (not to be confused with the lowish Takao-san 大垂水峠!!)in Yamanashi, bordering on Nagano Pref. may qualify as an even more agonizing and hostile hill. About 30km in length, you climb up to a height of 2,360m (which is the highest passable road for automobile traffic in all of Japan) covering a vertical drop of 1,836m. To get there, take JR Chuo Honsen and get off at Yamanashi-shi or Enzan Station - or much better (I dislike rinko-ing), first cycle all the way to Enzan via Wada, Tsuru, Imagawa and Yanagisawa trying to get there before noon, then leave your backpack at an onsen ryokan (there are about 5 or 6) in Enzan, and finally start your attack of OODARUMI! Follow Line Nr. 210, the "Somaguchi Enzan-sen" all the way to the top. Beautiful climb & fantastic downhill guaranteed! You should be able to make it back to your ryokan before it gets dark. At the end of the day, enjoy the food with local Katsunuma wine, get a good soak in the onsen and cycle back to Tokyo the next morning (the reverse Yanagisawa is one of my favorites too!). Perfect plan for a weekend and you still get to spend most of Sunday afternoon with your spouse or whoever you left back home.
Great tip

Wow, TOM, that plan sounds fantastic. I'll definitely be doing that this spring or summer.


Wow, TOM, that plan sounds fantastic. I'll definitely be doing that this spring or summer.

Chazzer is planning just that:


Unless the title of "highest road" in Japan is in dispute... The two routes don't sound quite the same, although they appear to be in the same general area.

Richy152 > For what it's worth, I run a 12-27 at the back, 50-34 compact on the front--didn't help much on Saturday though... :warau:
Chazzer's route (NORIKURA - where Japan's most famous hillclimb race takes place every August) is not really in the same neighbourhood. OODARUMI 大弛峠 is still Yamanashi territory and perfectly reachable in a one-day trip from Tokyo.

BTW, average inclination of OODARUMI-Toge is (only) 6.2% but those 30 kilometers are unrelentingly LONG!

FYI, I have been using 50/34 and 11/23 but am in the process of reverting to a normal crankset of 53/39 and 12/25.
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