touring Tohoku


Speeding Up
May 29, 2008
formerly Kichijoji, now Portland OR
Hi everyone,
I'm planning a 12 day tour of Tohoku starting August 1st. I was originally planning to start in Aomori and head back towards Tokyo but some of the cyclists on yesterdays Westside Tour suggested it would be better to go with the wind-- South to North (Thank you for the tip!!!!)

So now the tentative plan is now to start in Sendai and head north along the east coast, rt 398 at first and then rt45 . I hope to do at least a 100km a day, which I think is doable for my fitness level. After I hit the north of honshu, should I head down the west side or hop a ferry and do some of Hokkaido? Head south again through the mountains on rt 4? Suggestions?

I'll be staying in hotels, hostels, rider houses, with friends etc but NOT camping. Though camping sounds fun, I'd rather use more energy for cycling.

Things experienced tourers have suggested I pack
a drain stopper
single quantity laundry detergent x 12
a very bright front light
a head light (like climbers use)
and all the usual day trip stuff too, of course.

Anything you found very useful on your touring? This is my first time touring so any advice would be awesome.

Thank you!


Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
Rt 45 is very up and down with some killer climbs so 100 kms is a realistic aim. Rt 4 is flatter and you will make better time on Rt 4.
Drain stopper? no. Might be the wrong size and where you want to stay at will have them. if not ask.
Detergent? no. waste of space and weight, you can buy detergent at places along the way.
lights yes. dont forget the rear flasher.
remember to have a rainy day plan or good waterproof poncho.
are you using panniers or back pack?
wealth of touring info at


Maximum Pace
Sounds like a great trip

I used to live in Kazuno, northeast corner of Akita, and would definitely recommend trying to take in some of the areas around Mt. Iwate, Mt. Hachimantai, and, especially, Lake Towada. Lots of climbing, of course, but great scenery and onsens as a reward.

One example (if coming from the south), might be 341 > 282 > 103 and then 454 around Lake Towada, making sure to detour briefly up Oirase Gorge while there.


Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
Kawaguchi, Saitama
Go Kori !

thanks to everyone for the advice!
I head to Sendai (on the first Shinkansen) tomorrow morning and head north.
If anyone wants to follow along, I'll be updating regularly (probably) at
cross those fingers for tail winds!
We will all be cheering for you, and await the full report when you get back!
Rubber Down! Travis


Basho's companion
Nov 2, 2005
Yokohama -> Fukuoka
いってらっしゃ~い! がんばれ~!:happy: