Difficulty: ** to **** depending on which route you take. (leader, Paul)
At an altitude of 1,400 m, Oze, part of the Nikko National Park, is the largest mountain marsh in Japan with the peaks of Hiuchi-ga-take (2,360 m) and Shibutsu-san (2,228 m) at its East and West ends offering wonderful panoramic views. Famed for its mizubashou, unflatteringly called skunk cabbage in English, in the Spring, and also popular in the Autumn, I thought it was about time to visit the marsh during the Summer. With wooden planked trails laid out over the marsh and two of the Top 100 mountains to climb, there's something for everyone. This two-day trip will include an overnight stay at one of the huts in the marsh area.
(leaders, Ginny & Tadashi)
Difficulty: *** (leader, Masako)
The idea of this walk is to enjoy autumn in a quiet mountain region. Sumon-dake (1537m) and Asakusa-dake (1586m), located on the border of Nigata and Fukushima prefectures, are the ideal mountains for this purpose. The combination of heavy snow falls and ancient volcanic activities have created a variety of landscapes in this region. We will walk through a gentle beach forest that harbors wilderness including luminescent mushrooms and bears, to the grassy peak with marshes while viewing the rocky ridges of surrounding mountains along the ascent. From the summit there are great views of Hiuchi (Oze), Nasu, Bandai and Ide mountains. As it is scheduled on a three-day weekend, there may be an option to stay an extra night in a mountain hut, making it a three day trip.
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