We had been crossing our fingers for good weather all week long. When we started out on our day long bus tour of Mount Fuji-the weather was perfect. What luck!
The first place we visited was the shrine at the foot of Mount Fuji. It was beautiful. Our tour guide spoke excellent English and had grown up in the area around Mount Fuji. The things we learned about the history regarding the mountain were fascinating.
We learned many things about Mount Fuji. At the visitors center there was a video-in English-that explained how the volcanoes through out the centuries formed MountFuji. It was fascinating.
Mount Fuji is the largest mountain in Japan at 3776 meters (12,389 ft) The official climbing seasons is limited to July and August. The top of the mountain is cold all year round and gets lots of snow, making it extremely dangerous to climb during the off season. Professionals do climb it all year round, though it isn’t recommended due to the danger. (But that’s why they are rock climbers, right?)
During our visit, we were able to drive up to the fourth of eight stations. Most climbers start hiking from the fifth station. When hiking from the fifth station, it takes an average paced hiker about six hour to reach the summit.
Karl and I will be back to hike by the end of our time here in Japan. I’m excited.
After coming down from the mountain, we made our way to two caves. These two caves had been formed due to the lava from Mount Fuji’s past eruptions. The first cave was an ice cave. The caverns in the middle of the forest act as natural freezer. The ice stays all year round.
The second cave was a little walk into the famous Aokigahara forest. This one was called the wind cave because of the two openings, which create a wind tunnel.
Because we had a little extra time we were able to also go see some beautiful waterfalls. They were part of the largest opening of natural spring water in the area of Mount Fuji. Fortunately for me, the lighting was perfect at that time.
After about nine hours on the tour, we were ready to get back to K’s House and head over to the bar next door to relax.