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Archive for February 2015

Ryozen Hiking

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Ryozen is a mountain in northeast Fukushima Prefecture, between the cities of Date and Soma. It is 825 meters high, but its walls of bare rock and sharp cliff edges make it look a lot higher. It is a pretty easy mountain for hiking, and you can see most of the main sights in just 3 or 4 hours.

On top of the mountain, there used to be a castle and a complex of Buddhist temples and training centers. The first temple opened in 859 and remained in use for several hundred years. The castle was built sometime later, but was mostly destroyed during a war in the 14th century. Today the buildings are long gone, but you can still see foundation stones, the remains of stone walls, and other things where they used to be.

Here are some scenes from a hike around the mountain.

Parking area and local produceTrailhead

In the tents at the edge of the parking area, there are locally-grown fruits and vegetables for sale. Just beyond the tents is the trailhead, with a map of the mountain.

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There were lots of senior citizen groups on the mountain today.

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Here is a view of the parking area and “Kodomo no Mura,” a children’s activity center.

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I’m not sure what this used to be, but it’s near the castle area on top of the mountain.

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This flat area is where the main part of the castle used to be. Now it’s a popular place for picnics.

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And that’s it – a walk from the main parking area up to the castle grounds. On the map, it looks like the north and east sides of the mountain also have some interesting things to see, such as the remains of old temples and shrines. I didn’t have time to go and look at them on this day, but maybe later?

Written by hobara09

2015-02-26 at 5:09 pm

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