Saturday, 7 June 2008

Friday 6th June 2008 - Kirishima National Park

Kirishima National Park is about 40km north east of Kagoshima. It's home to an impressive ridge containing a number of active volcanoes. The highest point on the ridge is Karakuni-dake (1700m). The five hour ridge walk, starting at Takachiho-gawara, included four peaks and some impressive forest. This time around we were equipped with a bear bell - a welcome new addition to the kit list. No sign of any snakes or bears on this trip so it was obviously working. Being a Friday when we did the walk, there were a high number of older 'mountain goats' (pensioners) doing the walk too.

See the video below for the daytime forest wall of sound.

We managed to get a last minute stay in a local hotel in Kirishima-jingu. Its an interesting place from another era.
The hotel owner and his wife were very friendly. Our room was fitted with its own TV, VHS video player and retro phone (see photo below). There was also an onsen bath to have a soak in - big enough to push off and glide in. Dinner was a stunning nine course affair showcasing the best of local japanese food, including kibinago sashimi (a sardine-like silvery fish arranged in a flower head). Breakfast had seven courses with a fish tempura as the highlight. Mine was quite tasty but Jen's was a real surprise - a female full of fish eggs. Yum yum!!!