This walk starts at the same place as number 18 if you take the bus. But, I have already been to all the stops on this walk as I live fairly close by, some a few times. I used to cycle here nearly every weekend. I thought about cycling this time, but it was hot and I already knew there was a very steep part at the end. So onward little scooter!!! Oh and I tried out some film cameras to make it more interesting for me, see if you can spot the digital or film photos.
If you do walk or cycle this route it could be quite a tiring day, be prepared with plenty of water. You go up a mountain for goodness sake.
Here is the map.
It starts out quite flat though. I went straight to number one and skipped the bus stop this time. The first two stops are ones I have been to more than the others on the route as they are very close to the start of a popular cycling hill. I set myself the challenge cycling up it…but I am too fat and unfit so never got more than halfway. Then it was closed due to landslides, so I got out of the habit of trying. One day 😉
This is Oike Pond and it is part of one of the “100 Roads in Japan” because it looks stunning in cherry blossom season…and leads up to the Shrine on Mount Tsukuba. So basically doing this walk you are completing one of the “roads”. Now I realize I didn’t take any photos of the actual pond. Familiarity and all that.
Stop number two is right next door and has a very small shop that sometimes sells local vegetables, but it does have a toilet that the cyclists love to use. There really are loads around here.
I would be very careful going the way the van is as that is the direction of the cycling hill. Luckily our walk goes the other way.
Stop two is Hirasawa Site Ruins. There is a walk around the big storehouses and sometimes festivals on the grounds.
From here we head towards a super shrine for stop number three, Fomonji. Apparently, this shrine was burnt down in 1999 the reason was never found. It has been restored over the past few years. There was a friendly dog there while I was exploring. It barked an, “Oi, watch yerself matey” then basically ignored me, it did wag its tail at the workers though. I left it sunning and sleeping.
I really liked this shrine, lots to see and explore. Oh, and if you need the toilet in Japan, look for this sign.
The next stop is more of a continuation of the walk. The road on which the shrine sits is supposed to be very interesting, lots of old houses and cool roofs. For me it was a bit, meh…but you have to walk that way anyway.
Here are some of the “interesting” things to see for stop four.
And then onto stop five which my sister will remember. It is a tori gate at the bottom of a steep hill. When she visited me a while ago we went for a trip and walk to Mount Tsukuba. When we finally return to the car the GPS directed us to this hill and we drove down it, hoping my brakes would not give out. The photos don’t give the steepness justice. My scooter could barely make the hill at this point. I saw another lady at the shrine, doing the walk on foot and she arrived at the same time 😦
Then a lovely steep walk, scoot, cycle to the final stop, Mount Tsukuba Shrine.
From here there are many walking routes to try, or you can take a cable car. There is also a ropeway you can take at the top that returns to a different location, but walkable. I didn’t go up this time as I have walked it a number of times and have completed all but one route. Again, take lots of water…or stay around the shrine for udon noodles and an ice-cream.