Mount TakaoNovember 6, 2017 in Japan ⋅ ☀️ 13 °C
Today was the last and expiry day of our JR Rail Passes. They've served is well taking us all around the Honshu region of Japan, but we still keen to squeeze a little more value out them.
We woke around 9 amd rather spontaneously decided to catch a train from Shinjuku station about an hour west of the Tokyo city centre to the base pf Mount Takao.
Getting there was no problem, but whilst we'd hope to escape the surging seas of human crowds by getting into the countryside, they certainly followed us to our destination. There was 15 times the amount of people as I expected to find in a forest/mountain area on a weekday.
Theres a cable car here (steepest in Japan) and chair lift that take you half way up the mountain. From there, theres 6 different paths up to the summit. We decided to catch the cable car first, and get chair lift on the way back. The cable car was jammed to capacity and the 6 minute ride reached a maximum steepness of 31degrees.
At the top of the cable car we followed the crowds on the main path to the summit via Yakuo-in Temple. It was slow going with hundreds of people shambling along. We took in the views at the summit and decided to hike down to the chair lift by a different route; track 4 which went via a suspension bridge. It was much narrower, prettier and quieter.
The chair lift itself was an experience where you have to jump on a conveyor belt at the right time and fall back onto your chair lift with no safety, security, belt or bar to hang on to. It was a pretty way to get back down and we headed back to the trains, returning to Shinjuku JR station in Tokyo by 3.
The day wasnt to end there. After a few hours of r&r in our hotel room enjoying the views of Mount Fuji at sunset, we headed out for dinner and to explore Shibuya crossing.Read more