November 26, 2008

Hiking in the Kuju Mountain Range

Well, it certainly is Fall here in Japan and that means I'm freezing and about to die? Yes, but that is not what I'm getting at. It means 紅葉 Fall foliage and pristine hiking. About 3 maybe 4 weeks back, when the leaves where just starting to change, I took a little road trip to the Kuju mountain range 久住山々, which is in Aso-Kuju National Park, to test my feet on its slopes.

I was not disappointed. In fact, I was floored to find out that there is hiking of this caliber in my relative area--Hiking trails of all levels are abundant, even a "marathon" park with different exercise courses (aka flat walks), quite a few summitable peaks and genuine splendid natural beauty not to mention a copious amount of onsen 温泉 to sooth those aching muscles and feet after a hard days hike. There is even a flower park くじゅう花公園. I am already planning to return and spend the night this time in one of the many ryokan 旅館 that spot the Kuju Plateau. This time I hope to climb Mt. Nakadake, which is the highest mountain in Kyusyu standing at 5870 feet/1,791m. I think this might become a regular hiking place for me. After searching around for some photos, the mountain range looks great in winter and spring too.

Here is an overhead view from Google Earth

For more info from another blogger, check out this post.

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