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Takayama fudou hiking

On Sunday, I went for a hike through Takayama fudou area together with my husband and friends from work.

The weather was great, a kind you would experience in Karelia in the middle of September – neither cold nor warm with the perfect stillness in the air and the rich smell of moss and while berries. Old leaves crunch under your feet as you walk and you can see them falling down all around you like a silent rain. There was a morning fog hiding among the thick pine trees and the distant whisper of water echoing on the background – a true native element for a girl born into the Northern autumn. Needless to say, I do tend to embellish everything that is autumn because to me it is the perfect season that sharpens my sensitivity to its absolute nakedness and above all gives me the perfect environment to re-connect with my spirituality.

It’s about an hour hike to the beautiful Ootake waterfall and then another one and a half to the top of Takayama mountain.

We have discovered several long necked cranes and small fresh water crabs along the way but unfortunately without zoom lens I couldn’t take any nice pictures except for this one of a tiny little crab hiding under the rock next to the waterfall.

Middle of November is usually a “kouyou” (red leaf) season in Japan but because the summer ended so late this year, the leaves were just starting to turn red with the yellow color still in majority.

I particularly liked this tiny sunlit glade in the footsteps of the highest viewpoint hill. It somehow reminded me of my pioneer camping years when we used to play “zarniza” (a military inspired field game) making strategic bases in the similar tiny glades in the middle of the forest.

Our destination was “Kanhassyuu miharashidai” a 770m high viewpoint from which you can observe all 8 counties of old Kanto region. We stopped there for a little picnic on the grass.

My friend brought a bento for all of us that was so delicious it made me want to challenge the whole thing myself. Today, I went to a supermarket and bought a bright pink box that I later filled with rice and fried chicken and salad and fruits for my tomorrow lunch at work. Look at me – I am becoming a typical Japanese office lady! It’ll probably last for a day though as it is really tough to make such lunchbox every day unless you are into cooking or saving money. Unfortunately I exuberate neither one of those wonderful qualities.. ^-^

The seaweed that she brought for onigiri was sprinkled with salt. I have never seen such type before – it was absolutely delicious. Today, I bought it thinking it was the same kind but it wasn’t..

Our way back took 2 hours of constant downhill that at times was so steep I had to find a stick just to keep me in balance. Such descent is so bad on the knees – I am still recovering. There is a phrase in Japanese that refers to them as “laughing knees” because of the..no I don’t have an explanation for such term unless it has something to do with the natural desire of Japanese to put a positive spin on everything! ^-^

My next hiking is going to be to Ooyama so stay tuned for a brief description of a Japanese landscape with a lot of unnecessary but rather detailed references to my overly romanticized childhood in Russia which in most cases have nothing to do with the subject of interest whatsoever! ^-^

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Mia #

    Wow! Absolutely amazing. I love hiking and ..is it Takayama in Gifu prefecture? or you talked about Kanto so I suppose it’s another place…?? But anyway it looks fun, and yes, I guess your friend made a very special bento with good products like that seaweed because it looks very different than an average bento!!! Plus, it tastes better to eat outside, it’s been proven !!!

    And it’s true that it’s crazy and impressing how Japanese master how to do nice bento.Well I guess it’s because they used to eat bento since when they were kids and they ave lots of materials. And look how original are these Japanese mothers who make bentos for their kids. This country is definitely amazing. Of course I’ve never tried. If you make one of these from time to time, you’re definitely becoming a GREAT Japanese !!!! RESPECT !!!
    And respect for the long walk, you look great surrounded by trees in Autumn that’s probably because you were born in October… Autumn girl……

    November 17, 2010
    • Right back at ya autumn girl!
      It wasn’t Gifu prefecture’s Takayama. It was Okumusashi area, Hanno is the name of the city and Takayama fudou is the name of the shrine located in the forest of Okumusashi. The mountain itself officially has some name but everyone calls it Takayama fudou so I decided not to go into details… Thank you for reading and for such a dedicated reply! If I ever become good at making bento, lets have picnic in Shinjuku gyoen with Laura and Vincent!

      November 17, 2010
  2. Recently stumbled on your blog and what a treat! How beautiful the hiking trail and the munchies were. Nothing better that fresh air and crunchy leaves under your feet :) Cute legwarmers by the way!

    November 29, 2010
    • Thank you! Yes, I really love Autumn! I am going to Ishikawa next week so more red leaves pictures coming up! ^-^

      November 29, 2010

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