What not to do when hiking in Japan

I am no seasoned hiker by any usually means, but on my current excursion to NikkoTochigi Prefecture, I needed to keep away from the temples, courageous the wilds and imitate adventurous outdoorsy forms. So I mapped out a route and prepared for Japan’s fantastic outside. Regretably, I unsuccessful to recognize that my trek finished with impenetrable mountains and was only accessible by highway.

I had also neglected yet another necessary thing—bus instances. So, by sunset, my spouse and I were stranded on just one aspect of Lake Chuzenji. It did not help that this was in bear territory. Fortunately, a shining slither of cellular phone sign was ample to phone a rescue speedboat to whisk us back to civilization and our resort.

So that no other would-be adventurers conclude up like me in this article is a checklist of all my missteps with further tips on how not to be a comprehensive dummy like me. Do as I say, not as I do.

Strategy your route

You do not want to get lost right here. Photo: Yagi-Studio

This was in which all the things went downhill (or uphill, to be apt). I just cannot pressure the great importance of arranging, specially in rural Japan. Buses can operate when an hour or working day and stop early. Indicators aren’t constantly in English. Aside from well-known trails, there are not way too numerous individuals.

I employed AllTrails and Google Maps, but I must have questioned the locals just before trekking into mysterious territory. This was especially real of the masses walking in the reverse course (a bad indicator). All it would have taken was a rapid, “Tadashii michi desuka? (Is this the suitable way?)” tagged onto the obligatory, “Konnichiwa (Hello there).”

Yet another mistake was that I, as a starter, did not realize the worth of elevation obtain. The consistent up and down extra time and contributed to missing the previous bus. Expert hikers are inclined to get started before in the day.


  • Go to the tourist heart, get a map and some advice—that’s why it is there.
  • Use an application such as AllTrailsYamareco (Japanese) or Komoot to plan your route.
  • Notify somebody of your route and designs, like your resort, or use a tozan posuto (mountaineering path itinerary box) for longer journeys.
  • Know your limitations: never aim for significant peaks if you’re new to hiking or out of observe.

 Come ready

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© GaijinPot

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