Archives: 2009 April

Japan – Climbing Mount Fuji

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On Wednesday I went with a group of friends to climb Mount Fuji and ski back down. We started climbing at 2299 meters at around 7:30 in the morning. I was able to climb up to 3100 meters by about 14:00 before I was too worn out to go any farther. I have mostly been in Tokyo at sea leave for the past month, so I was really feeling the effects of the thinner air as I climbed Mount Fuji. As I got higher, it got so that I could only take a few steps before I would need to rest and catch my breath.

Unfortunately it was really icy, so the ski down wasn’t that great. It was a fun challenge, but so much work.

Mount Fuji

The group heading out.

The original plan was to ski up the mountain using skins on he bottom of our skis. The skins and special bindings allow a downhill ski to work more like a cross-country ski and you can actually ski up the mountain. Once you reach the top, you can peel the skins off the skis, lock the bindings down and ski like you would normally. Unfortunately it turned out to be too icy for that to work, so we had to put on crampons and carry our skis.

Crampons on my ski boots.

I’m slowly making my way up the mountain.

It was a little hazy so the views were not as amazing as it could have been.

Happy to be heading down.

Jeff skiing down.

Top of Mount Fuji is 3776 meters (12,388 feet).
Our starting point was 2299 meters (7543 feet).
My max elevation was 3097 meters (10,162).

My Route.

Japan – Octopus on a Stick

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Japan – Kasai Rinkai Park

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On the beach at Kasai Rinkai Park there was a group of people going around digging in the sand. So I went over to see what they were digging for.

That were catching this little guys, I’m not sure exactly what they are.

They would catch them by finding one of their holes and then dumping salt on the hole. This would cause the little guys to come poking out where they could be grabbed.

Japan – Photographers

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I was walking around Kasai Rinkai Park when I cam across this big group of photographers just waiting in a big line. It was a pretty wide range of photographers, some had really nice cameras with big lenses, but other just had little point and shoots.

I was trying to figure out what they were shooting when out walked a group of models.

The photographers and models broke up into smaller groups and scattered around the park and started doing photo shoots. I’m not sure if this was some kind of class or photo club or what it was.

Japan – Hasedera Temple in Kamakura

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The Hasedera Temple was nice because it’s on a hill side and has some beautiful gardens and paths through the trees. Plus lots of interesting statues.

Because the temple is on a hillside it has a nice view of the Kamakura beach.

Japan – Great Budda in Kamakura

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The Kotokuin Temple is a Buddhist Temple that is home to the Great Buddha statue. The Great Buddha is 11.31 meters tall and was constructed in 1252.

The Buddha is hollow and you can actually go inside of him. This is looking straight up.

Japan – Komachi-Dori Street in Kamakura

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Komachi-Dori Street in Kamakura is a little street full of small shops and restaurants that runs from the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine to the Kamakura train station.

Japan – Weddings in Kamakura

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While I was at the Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine there were two weddings. One of the interesting things about the weddings is that the Bride and Groom get paraded around the Shrine so that everybody can see them and take pictures.

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