Waterfalls of North Japan A Spiritual journey by AKIRA NAKAYASU

Welcome to the "Michi-noku(NORTH JAPAN) beech forest and waterFalls travelogue" : A record of the video and photos over the off-road in the North Japan.

I drive the Tohoku(North Japan) region for refreshing body and soul in the intervals between medical duties as a doctor. I think safety is the most important, but I think that if you keep driving by keeping your own rules based on experience, you can expect activation of the brain and improvement of reflexes by high-speed driving. I was touched by the mysterious Michi-noku 's secret boundary which can be said to be the opposite side that I have stayed in Canada as a medical student where I saw the vast expanse of nature. I feel that my heart warms up in contact with the local people. I will find hints to deepen my work and go home. The falls have been the subject of faith since ancient times. Indeed I am overwhelmed by the majestic things and greatness exceeding the power of human beings - something that is immortal, and even believing in the existence of God. By talking to the waterfall as a God, I feel that my body and soul have been cleansed and given new power. To go around the waterfalls, I think that I am continuing my journey of searching for myself, seeking "strong ones" that I do not have.
Shirakami mountain range is a generic term for mountainous areas extending from the northwest part of Akita prefecture to the southwestern part of Aomori prefecture. It is the largest natural treasure house in the world (about 130,000 hectares), which is mainly based on the wild beech forest which is hardly affected artificially, and was the first world heritage in Japan on December 11, 1993. Valuable animals and plants including the natural monument of the country such as beetle and eagle are inhabited in this area.
Guide Map of Shirakami-Santi World Heritage
Direction Board of Shirakami-Santi World Heritage Area
Entrance of a narrow path just beside of the parking area at the end of Ko-dake Trail
The narrow path 3.0 kilo away leading to the top of Kotake is the last hurdle.
Mt.Ko-dake: A panomamic view of Shirakami is provided from its top
On the drive way to Nishi-meya village from Fujisato-town, you can drop by Dakedai Nature Observation and Education Forest, where you enjoy a barrier-free trail that through the mossy forests and showcases the 400-year-old gigantic beech tree.
Aoike(Blue Pond) of Jyuni-Ko Pond
Aoike(Blue Pond), one of the twelve lakes at the entrance of the Shirakami Mountains is filled with mysterious blue water that you can not forget ever once you see it. Beautiful water filtered by rain water that penetrated beech trees pours to Aoike, but the reason for this strange blue color is enveloped in mystery.
Another view of Aoike
Another view of Aoike
Another view of Aoike
Sasauchi River before the entrance of Shirakami Skyline
Entrance of the Shirakami Skyline
Expectations and excitement will rise up at the entrance of the Shirakami Skyline which is open only for a limited period of the year.
Hazy Shirakami-dake in the rain cloud
Kurokuma (black bears) Falls with a drop of 80 meters. It is counted among 100 Best Waterfalls in Japan and is the largest waterfalls in Aomori Prefecture.
Going north along the Aka-Ishi River as the final driving adventure of the Shirakami-Line, the forest road leading to the "Kurokuma Falls" is a terrible rough road and your car will not run unless the lowest vehicle's height is over 20 cm. However, when I got off the car and walked down the mountain path and came to the waterfall, there was a scene of another world that made me feel quite refreshed.
Ishizawa Falls
From the Nihonkai Tohoku Expressway "Honjo" drive a little east to Line 107, there is a sign for "Ishizawa Gate Otaki Entrance" on the left. Ishizawa Otaki sounding a roaring sound in a dark gray valley takes visitors into a world of subtly echoing feeling.
Kameda-Otaki waterfalls
When you get off at Matsugas-aki Kameda on the Japan Sea Tohoku Expressway(South Akita) and run a little east on the prefectural road 341, there is a road leading to the waterfall on the left side. The "white cloth" pertaining to columnar joints of basalt" at 25 meters in height is an elegant waterfall.
Created By
Akira Nakayasu

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