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Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
Any cycling plans for Golden Week?

I will probably do my May Century this coming weekend (my wife is out Fri/Sat so theoretically I could even make this an overnight trip).

This is your monthly thread for your current rides and activities!
Any cycling plans for Golden Week?

Tonight I'll go to GS Astuto basecamp and tomorrow set out along the Nakasendo. The plan is for a relaxing five days of cycle-assisted sightseeing and historical exploration, finishing at Inuyama.

Hi, sorry new to the app & Tokyo! Will you ride tomorrow? And what is the distance you have in mind? I live in Minamiazabu.
Hi, sorry new to the app & Tokyo! Will you ride tomorrow? And what is the distance you have in mind? I live in Minamiazabu.
Hey Timtim, Welcome. Using the "@ username" will direct your questions to however you want. If you are looking for other rides that maybe happening or you are thinking of going on, perhaps posting in the RIDES sub forum will get more responses. What distances and pace do you usually ride?
On Saturday I didn't do my (Imperial) Century of the Month yet, only 106 km (here on Strava).

I left too late in the day and then decided to come back at a reasonable time. I went to Shiraiwa Falls in Hinode, about 5 km from Musashiitsukaichi station.


Along the Tamagawa I saw many families camping. It was a really sunny day and warm (I saw up to 32 deg C on the Wahoo). I drank plenty of water. At a conbini a few km before Musashiitsukaichi I bought sandwiches and coffee for lunch.


I met a few hikers around the falls but it wasn't too busy. I spent about half an hour hiking beyond the main falls.

On the way to the falls I had passed the new tunnel that connects Rt184 in the valley leading to the falls to Rt238 leading to the Tamagawa valley upstream of Ome. The tunnel is 1.3 km long (one of the longest in the area) and is downhill from the Hinode side. The cool air in the long tunnel was very enjoyable in the heat that day.

On my ride to Nippara last month I had met the former owner of Sherpa and he had told me about a new restaurant he was opening. It's on the north side of Ozaku station, two blocks from the station.


They have both curry dishes and kebab dishes. I had a curry set that came with a small kebab on the side.

Normally when I ride back from Okutama it is already dark by the time I get to Ome. This time I passed a lot of places in late daylight that I normally only ride past at night when returning. I got home to Tokyo a little after 21:00.

I still have three weekends in May to do my full Century (160.9 km) but it was nice to be able to take it easy and just ride to some places I liked without consideration of a minimum distance to cover for the day.
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Howdy folks, it's been quite a while since I've been on this forum – Quite a while off the bike too, until recently. About a month ago, I made the decision that I would complete the "circumnavigation of Honshu" that I began back in 2005. That meant I would have to start riding more frequently again to get in shape for the road trip. Anyway, at the beginning of April, I dusted the cobwebs off my bike, started hitting TrainerRoad again, and managed to get out for a back-in-the-saddle ride. Since then, I've been sticking to the training quite regularly, and today (ie. The topic of this post) I went up to Kumagaya and back.

I hadn't been up Arakawa in ages – Maybe 2 years on the west side, and probably over 5 years on the east side (where it goes past Akigase Park). I was surprised to see that what used to be a golf course, next to the bamboo forest, is now a construction zone. Today's ride was a Zone-2, base-miles, easy effort. There was a slight tailwind on the way up, and a hence a slight headwind on the way back. Still, an Ave.Spd of 27km/h for the 118km round-trip wasn't too bad.


Getting ready to roll...
As foreshadowed, I went out for some Golden Week Nakasendo action.


The Nakasendō (or Kiso-kaidō) was the inland, mountainous alternative to the Tokaidō route between Edo and Kyōto, formalised by the military government in the 1600s. The history of the whys, whos, hows, and wheres is beyond the scope of a cycling forum. I'd encourage you to read up about it if you're interested; the history is rich, and still in evidence all along the route. It's a massive rabbit hole.

Of the 69 staging posts/stations/-shuku along the route, the plan was to start at No. 16 Matsuida-shuku - conveniently where friend and TCC alumnus @GS Astuto is now based - and ride to No. 52 Unuma-shuku near Gifu over 5 days.

For the various mountain passes, there's usually a boring tunnel, a rideable road or highway, and the hiking path that most closely follows the original course of the Nakasendō. A combination is best for me!

The rural scenery was stunning. Surprisingly few cyclists about. Approx. 80:20 ratio of foreigners to locals on the famous hike sections at Torii-toge and Magome-toge.

Fatigue and nervousness about return travel conspired to cut day 5 short. Took a local train to Nagoya station. From there the unreserved section of the Kodama shinkansen was almost empty at 11.45 a.m., so a very comfortable and stress-free return journey with bike behind the seat.









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Hiya Mike! This trip looks cool. Any more info you can share? Accommodations (or camping?), cafe's, POI, etc?
I would definitely recommend staying at GS Astuto in Matsuida-shuku (station 16). The next day, at Hamada-ya in Nagakubo-shuku (station 27). My options were limited after that because it was last-minute Golden Week planning, but it depends how much you want to ride/hike and how much you want to stop and investigate the historical bits.

Am working on a definitive annotated route... a lot of work and not complete yet.

Another Wednesday off, so I set out for Shiraishi-toge (or is it "Shiroishi-toge"? - I'm sure the signs used to spell it with an "a", but now it's an "o").
Anyway, up the Arakawa again, and out through Sakado. I treated this as a "build-phase" training ride: the first 2 1/2 hours at zone-2 to the base of the climb, then whatever I could hold for the next 40 minutes to get up the wee hill, followed by a downhill run to Ogawamachi station.

I knew it had been a few years since I'd climbed Shiraishi (3 years, according to Strava), and it was just as tough as I remembered.
I took the train home from Ogawamachi, nursing a coffee and baum kuchen.
This is all in preparation for an upcoming "Summer Vacation 6-day road trip", which I will share in a separate thread in the near future.
Thursday's ride plan was cancelled, so I thought I'd go up Kazahari. But Sunday's ride plan was still on, so better keep it short and simple. First, take the train early enough to get a seat all the way. And then the ride from Itsukaichi to Hinohara, turning right at Takebana-bashi, and up:


And up. Hmm, I'd never before noticed


a sign to Ogōchi pass (or even that there was a pass so named). Another reminder of the inundated village.

And up and up. Should have brought along my copy of I-Spy Street Furniture for


Up and onto the rindō; and rounding photo-op bend:


To the top:


and back down:


Lunch at Tachibana-ya (next to Tachibana-bashi).

It's a tasty little route

[I wish that when transcluded elsewhere, RwGPS displayed in kilometres and metres rather than in American Freedom Units aka Rees-Mogg Sovereignty Units.]

The route is much improved by taking in Tossaka, but this may still be impossible other than on Sundays and holidays. Or anyway the last time I did it (on a Sunday, a month or so ago) the road was rather impenetrably blocked just north of the top: we got through, but this wouldn't have been possible if people were working there at the time.

One push-bike goes up this way for every twenty that go up via Tomin no Mori; one motorbike goes up this way for every hundred that go up via Tomin no Mori. It's quite unspoilt.
Up and down the Edogawa this weekend. Great cycling weather. No wind at all..
Love this season.......everything is go green.
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