A straight up-and-down climb of the highest summit bordering Lake Shikotsu-ko, in southern Hokkaido. Volcanic fumes drift gently up from the angular crater cut out of the side of the mountain. The route climbed steeply through dense forests with only occasional views, and some slippery parts requiring support from fixed ropes. The final tricky section to the top was closed.
- I’ll remember, most of all, the long climb through the forest.
- The best bit for me was the view from the rocky resting place two-thirds of the way up.
- The worst bit was a long steep stretch hanging on to a series of ropes.
- The funniest bit was when we opened up a rice ball to find it filled with tiny eels!
- A word of warning for other walkers would be to remember to take off outdoor footwear when going for an onsen after the walk!
- Scary bits? Not if you keep away from the edges of the crater. The steep stretches were just awkward, with ropes to hang onto, but would be very slippery and difficult in wet weather.
- I didn’t expect we’d manage this mountain as easily as we did.
Contributed by Andrew Llanwarne< Back to Japan page for links to other stories
|Location||5 miles / 8 km NW of Shikotsu Kohan, in Shikotsu-Toya National Park, near Sapporo|
|Date walked||July 2003|
|Walk type||High hills and mountain hikes|
|Difficulty||Requires mountaineering skills and lots of stamina|
|Distance||8 km / 5 miles|
|Height climbed||1000 m / 3300 ft|
|Time taken||5 hrs 30 mins|
|Map used||"Attack" 1:25,000 Shikotsu-ko map|
|Walk source info||National Park Centre in Shikotso Kohan Route marked on map Mentioned in the Lonely Planet Guide|
|Getting there||Train Sapporro ? Chitose Bus Chitose ? Shikotsu Kohan Or, Saporro-Shikotsu Kohan bus stops here.|
|Places to stay||Several hotels and guest houses in the area. "Lapland" at Morappu highly recommended|