2804 maal bekeken, 15 maal gedownload
in de buurt Nippara, Tōkyō (Japan)
After abundant snowfall 2 days earlier most of the trail was covered with 20 to 30 cm of fresh snow. The temperature went quite low the day before and it was icy from the very beginning, leading me to put my crampons on after no more than 1 km.
Up to the emergency hut, a few hundred meters from the Mitsudokke summit, the trail presents no technical difficulty, also there is almost no view especially for the first two thirds and the snow just make progression slower.
The bypass ridge to Mitsudokke (towards Kurodokke) has a fair bit of traverse and the snow makes it quite delicate. Due to the frost during the night the superficial layer of snow was like a crust and relatively large parts of it would break and fall on the side with each of my steps, with more snow on top of this and it would make the whole thing highly unstable and prone to avalanches.
The final small ridge to Mitsudokke was virgin with snow dunes about knee height. Too bad the weather was still cloudy at that time.
From Mitsudokke the view extends to 360 degrees, Fuji, most of Okutama mountains, but also Nikko and probably Hotaka and Tanigawa in Gunma. Unfortunately the weather was quite gray at that time. Hopefully it quickly turned to a cloudless sky within 1 hour, which made the hike more interesting.
The very long ridge towards Iwatakeishi seems to be almost flat on the map but it has a few very steep ups and downs, each of which has only a small elevation gain (never more than 100m) so it gives the impression of evenness. However it turns out it took a lot of time to get to the end of the ridge as the amount of snow was still impressive even far below 1000m. I could see only a few ropes, almost useless as the trail was not very steep and many roots offered a better grip, but I guess many were hidden along the steepest stretches.
There were no visible stairs (there may have been some buried under the snow) until the end of the ridge towards Kurodakke and walking there was quite pleasant.
The view itself is much less impressive than what can be seen in the Tanzawa mountains and I would not think of going in the area when it becomes free of snow.
For the last part of the hike I was caught by the dark and was glad that it was finally possible to walk without crampons.
Getting to the station was eventually the hardest part, 2 km of road but only 20 minutes to make it in time for the train (or 50 minutes for the following), there I missed the right turn and had to wait almost 30 minutes. I was never never cold even knee deep in the snow but I was almost shaking while waiting for that train.
Overall this hike is too long to be considered by beginners and now impressive in terms of scenery. The good layer of fresh snow certainly made it more interesting and challenging at the same time.
More pictures and videos here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/u1mm5c5qi8g3x38/NrIRPRsh_m