Mt. Aizu-Komagatake 会津駒ヶ岳

Komanogoya 駒ノ小屋 – Chumon-dake 中門岳 . . Primeval Beech Forest Gives Way to Alpine Marshland Mt. Aizu-Komagatake or simply Aizu-Koma is a vast expanse of rolling marshlands, limpid ponds and flower fields in Minamiaizu, Fukushima Prefecture. The...

Journey Along the Kurasawa Valley in Okutama

Solo Summer Hike and Camp in Okutama Arriving mid-morning at Okutama Station during the Obon holidays was as expected bustling with activity. A little surprising perhaps given COVID-19. I made a beeline for one of the two diminutive buses headed for...

Mt. Nyukasa 入笠山

Nyukasa Marsh 入笠湿原 – Mt. Nyukasa 入笠山 . . Best-in-class Hiking for Families, Beginners, and Adventure Seekers Mt. Nyukasa lies at the north end of the Southern Alps in Nagano Prefecture though technically falls outside the Minami Alps National...

Koburi Pass 顔振峠

Suwa Shrine 諏訪神社 – Mt. Ogamiyama 越上山 – Yugate ユガテ . . Discover One of Saitama’s Best Kept Secrets Koburi Pass has been on my ‘to hike’ list for ages so with sunny skies forecast last weekend I finally found my opportunity. Located in...

Camping in Japan: How-to Find Campgrounds

Tracking Down Campgrounds Like Pro There is no shortage of camping locations in Japan in fact there are over 3,000 campgrounds according to this Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) travel guide. They can be found in just about every nook and...

Hachikokuyama Park: One of Tokyo’s Finest

Rainy Season Delights at a Suburban Tokyo Park A mere 25 km (16 mi.) from Shinjuku Station finds one of Tokyo’s most underrated parks that being Hachikokuyama Park 八国山緑地. Together with Kitayama Park abutting to the south it is one of four discrete...

Mountains, Meditation and Mindfulness

Reduce Stress by Spending Time in Nature Focused or mindful breathing meditation is something I have been practising on and off for a long time now. I first came across the method in the mid-90s after reading a local newspaper article titled...

Sayama Hills Loop Hike

Saitama Prefectural Nature Park – Noyamakita-Rokudoyama Park . . A Green Oasis in Tokyo’s Outer Suburbs I’ll go out on a limb and say this is possibly the best 4-hour hike within 30 km of downtown Tokyo. The Sayama Hills measure 11 km...

My Backpacking Cook Kit

A Simplified Backpacking Cook Kit One of my resolutions this year was to lighten my base weight. It’s easier said than done. First up I tackled my first aid kit, followed by some upgrades to my sleep system and shelter with a Nemo insulated...

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