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Japan Fukuoka Hiking Mount Homan Dazaifu

23 November 2015

Other people

Its a national holiday, theres only one mountain of note that people living here go to, its peak leaf season, the internet warned of jam packed trails.
I went anyway, and it was perfectly fine, yes there were other people, but it didnt slow my progress at all.

Todays mountain is called Mount Homan, it is near what turned out to be the tourist favourite shrine and shopping location of Dazaifu.
I had allowed time to get here, because it seemed like a lot of stations, and one change, so I boarded the train which was a limited express, which then went directly to the station I needed, bypassing 20 others.
The small train to the shrine near the mountain was waiting for me, so all in all, 30 minutes at most.
The shrine however, was not really near the mountain, time for supplies and a 45 minute walk to the next shrine which is the start of the mountain, there sure are a lot of shirnes.

Once at the mountain, it was time to limber up, I had decided to go as hard as I could, after reading the path is all big rock steps that never end from the gate to the peak.
This description turned out to be exactly right, some of the steps were very high, and unlike most mountains, it got steeper near the end, the final grand rock staircase was over 400 steps straight up.
I pushed on as hard as I could, completely soaked with sweat on what is a beautiful 20 degree sunny day. I had dressed for the occasion is shorts and t-shirt, passing all the locals in their mountain survival gear.

There were quite a few people hanging around the top as you can see below, behaving like Koreans with mini radios blasting and gas stoves. There was also a small wolf puppy who was extremely happy. I hung around just long enough to take in the view, and headed down the looping path which rejoined the main path about half way down.
I swear I passed some people on the way down who I had passed on the way up, they were still not even half way. I saw a lot of people who I thought might need CPR at any moment, doubled over taking in huge breaths.
I got sick of answering Koninchiwa to everyone choking and attempting to Koninchiwa me whilst they were on their way up, but I feared failure to answer would end up with me being on the news as a rude foreigner.

Once back at the botttom, I decided to go explore the now extremely busy shopping and shrine area, and eat some street snacks. A highlight here was a little girl all dressed up who looked in a pram to see a baby under a blanket, and then a bulldog poked its head out and barked at her. She screamed and fell over. A minor argument between the two women who were the parents of the bulldog, and the parents of the kimono clad child then ensued.

Update!!!!! High resolution panoramas are back, links to the left in the table of contents area!!!!!

Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - I got off the train at the last stop on the tourist spur line and spotted the shopping street. The hiking guide made no mention of this. Awesome weath

I got off the train at the last stop on the tourist spur line and spotted the shopping street. The hiking guide made no mention of this. Awesome weather despite rain being forecast.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Shrine number 1 of 10 today. They all seem to be having Labour Thanksgiving celebrations of some kind.

Shrine number 1 of 10 today. They all seem to be having Labour Thanksgiving celebrations of some kind.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - It was about a 45 minute brisk walk from the train to the start of the mountain trail, thats todays mountain in the distance.

It was about a 45 minute brisk walk from the train to the start of the mountain trail, thats todays mountain in the distance.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - The grounds of this shrine were nice and leafy.

The grounds of this shrine were nice and leafy.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - The shrine itself, small and boring. Thats enough shrines for today.

The shrine itself, small and boring. Thats enough shrines for today.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Time to hit the trail, it soon became giant rock steps.

Time to hit the trail, it soon became giant rock steps.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - You cross a road a couple of times but there was no road to the peak itself today. That didnt stop all these people driving to a crossing point and st

You cross a road a couple of times but there was no road to the peak itself today. That didnt stop all these people driving to a crossing point and starting their walk from half way up.
I called them lazy to their lazy faces.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Every now and then, another gate.

Every now and then, another gate.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Like most mountains in Japan, there is rarely a view until you get to the top due to excess trees in the way. Hence when you do get a view, best to ta

Like most mountains in Japan, there is rarely a view until you get to the top due to excess trees in the way. Hence when you do get a view, best to take a photo in case cloud rolls in.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Cloud was indeed rolling in, the next valley is a sea of cloud.

Cloud was indeed rolling in, the next valley is a sea of cloud.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Now I am at the top, and theres Fukuoka.

Now I am at the top, and theres Fukuoka.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - And heres the other way again, OK thats enough view.

And heres the other way again, OK thats enough view.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - At the top, theres this thing with a bell. I guess its a shrine. There are no public toilets on the peak itself....

At the top, theres this thing with a bell. I guess its a shrine. There are no public toilets on the peak itself....


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - There are lots of people hanging around having a picnic.

There are lots of people hanging around having a picnic.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Time to abseil down using the chains.

Time to abseil down using the chains.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - This takes you to a camp ground, which does have public toilets. I stopped here for my pocari sweat. After this I put my camera away, in case I fell f

This takes you to a camp ground, which does have public toilets. I stopped here for my pocari sweat.
After this I put my camera away, in case I fell flat on my face during the descent.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Back where I started and the shopping street is now a hive of activity.

Back where I started and the shopping street is now a hive of activity.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - The place is popular enough to not only get a starbucks, but get a specially designed culturally appropriate starbucks.

The place is popular enough to not only get a starbucks, but get a specially designed culturally appropriate starbucks.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - It was a very nice street, there are shops selling crap but also some good shops, including branches of the museum shop, people making chopsticks, som

It was a very nice street, there are shops selling crap but also some good shops, including branches of the museum shop, people making chopsticks, someone carving owls.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - This seems to be the local snack, so I got one. Its red bean again, but unsweetened. The crispy shell was also not sweet, but it was hot as hell.

This seems to be the local snack, so I got one. Its red bean again, but unsweetened. The crispy shell was also not sweet, but it was hot as hell.


Japan-Fukuoka-Hiking-Mount Homan-Dazaifu - Since the above snack was flavourless, I thought I would try this one. I thought it would be ice cream but no. I think its rice crackers, with rice pa

Since the above snack was flavourless, I thought I would try this one. I thought it would be ice cream but no. I think its rice crackers, with rice paste mixed with green tea. Also flavourless.
I had visited the street of flavourless snacks.


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