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Japan Kyoto Kurama Hiking Shrine

31 October 2017

Thwarted

Thwarted is one of my favourite words. Normally because I use it to describe how I prevented someone else from achieving their nefarious goals.
Today I was thwarted by fallen trees and landslides. I suspect this wouldnt actually have been an issue for me, but the path I had selected over a mountain was a very popular route between two shrines, and therefore popular with old folks, who might struggle to climb over a fallen log.
Japan took this closing of the path seriously, with guards, and fences erected with barbed wire. So I had to back track down from the first shrine and find out where to go to next.

This was an issue for all of ten seconds. ALL OF KYOTO is hiking trails over mountains. Really, I just walked up the steet and there was soon a sign showing me another path in the other direction.

After a small mountain, I now found myself in a valley far from public transport. No problem, I will just go for an extended walk back to the nearest train.
There actually was a bus option, but just like Taiwan, buses do not operate at lunch time, at all. They come twice an hour beween 7am and 11am and 2pm and 6pm, but between 12 noon and 2pm, there are no buses.
I dont really get this, I have noticed it all over Asia. It would seem the greater Asian Oriental bus driver union has a hemisphere wide agreement to not operate buses between 12 and 2.

The train line I was on today is primarily constructed for Autumn leaf vieweing. In all the tiny stations they had signs explaining the increased schedule during leaf season. They also run trains with window facing seats! Something I had never seen before, see photo below.

And now, I am confident today is Halloween, the BBC just told me so, they said 'Today is the day where the rest of the world celebrates Halloween whilst here in the UK we go to work and talk about the miserable weather'.

Oh and one more thing, on any other day I would have been raving about how great the scenery was today and that the photos are awesome etc. They are, its just that I am still overwhelmed by yesterday.

Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Another great day of weather here in Kyoto. The BBC should take note.

Another great day of weather here in Kyoto. The BBC should take note.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - The first train was a double decker train, just like in Sydney. Except here in Japan they are fully carpeted! Imagine having a fully carpeted train on

The first train was a double decker train, just like in Sydney. Except here in Japan they are fully carpeted!
Imagine having a fully carpeted train on the run from Sydney Town Hall out to Blacktown.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - My second train making the run up the valley of hysterical leaf experience is tiny. I like it. At each stop the driver opens a window to take your pay

My second train making the run up the valley of hysterical leaf experience is tiny. I like it. At each stop the driver opens a window to take your payment.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - I caught it all the way to the end of the line, Kurama. Where the famous shrine is.

I caught it all the way to the end of the line, Kurama. Where the famous shrine is.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - These pinocchio demons are very popular here.

These pinocchio demons are very popular here.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - The streets of Kurama are quite traditional. The light today was absolutely blinding.

The streets of Kurama are quite traditional. The light today was absolutely blinding.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Now we start to ascend the steps to the shrine in brilliant color. There are bear warning signs, an elementary school and a kindergarten on the ground

Now we start to ascend the steps to the shrine in brilliant color.
There are bear warning signs, an elementary school and a kindergarten on the grounds. A tasty combination.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - THWARTED! At first I thought I would just ignore this sign and take the path to Kibune anyway. But that proved to be impossible.

THWARTED! At first I thought I would just ignore this sign and take the path to Kibune anyway. But that proved to be impossible.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Yes, quite colorful.

Yes, quite colorful.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Here is an enormous tree. Lots of people were looking up at this tree, so I looked up at this tree. A Japanese man standing nearby had his hands on hi

Here is an enormous tree. Lots of people were looking up at this tree, so I looked up at this tree.
A Japanese man standing nearby had his hands on his hips looking extremely satisfied with the tree. He then decided to excitedly tell me about it in Japanese whilst pointing at its features.
No amount of telling him I dont speak Japanese could stop him, so I just let him run his course.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Todays view, nice clouds. Hard work in such bright sunlight.

Todays view, nice clouds. Hard work in such bright sunlight.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Pretty close to peak color here! The sky was also extremely blue depending on the direction I was looking. I had to stop and marvel at various points.

Pretty close to peak color here! The sky was also extremely blue depending on the direction I was looking. I had to stop and marvel at various points.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - A bit more marvelling from here.

A bit more marvelling from here.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - They caught a baby dragon and bronzed it.

They caught a baby dragon and bronzed it.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - There are a lot of steps to the top if you are a pathetic weakling. If you are even weaker than that, theres a cable car. That will save you a good 5

There are a lot of steps to the top if you are a pathetic weakling. If you are even weaker than that, theres a cable car. That will save you a good 5 minutes of walking and ensure you get no view.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - The Temrine (temple/shrine) at the top is underwhelming compared to the view.

The Temrine (temple/shrine) at the top is underwhelming compared to the view.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - View from top. Too much sun.

View from top. Too much sun.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - More Shremple (shrine/temple). Still no way to get over the top.

More Shremple (shrine/temple). Still no way to get over the top.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - I climbed to the top and was standing in front of this bell when a small Japanese grandma used her ninja skills to sneak up behind me and dong the bel

I climbed to the top and was standing in front of this bell when a small Japanese grandma used her ninja skills to sneak up behind me and dong the bell with full force. I nearly plummeted.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - After climbing back down to the bottom and finding an alternative path, I briefly followed a lesser quality path which I thought was heading more towa

After climbing back down to the bottom and finding an alternative path, I briefly followed a lesser quality path which I thought was heading more towards where I wanted to be.
Unfortunately it disappeared and became a sea of fallen trees so I had to double back.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - However, here is a random spot deep in the woods, where my poorly formed path meets 3 others, with a plethora of signs and maps. I really do think thi

However, here is a random spot deep in the woods, where my poorly formed path meets 3 others, with a plethora of signs and maps. I really do think this was quite a remote path, it really doesnt go anywhere anyone would want to go, and yet, Kyoto has provided lots of info to assist.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - After a while the path became a bit more like a real path, so I bounded along, not really knowing where it would come out.

After a while the path became a bit more like a real path, so I bounded along, not really knowing where it would come out.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Then I came across this, deep in the woods. Its not a toilet. I think someone lives here! There are curtains and signs of life. No electricity. I didn

Then I came across this, deep in the woods. Its not a toilet. I think someone lives here! There are curtains and signs of life. No electricity. I didnt hang around to find out what goes on in the mysterious rape cabin in the woods on Halloween.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - And then this is where my path came out. There were signs further up the valley to various shrines, but I needed to head back to a station.

And then this is where my path came out. There were signs further up the valley to various shrines, but I needed to head back to a station.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - My path took me past a huge quarry. I enquired if they needed me to run the rock crusher for a few hours, they didnt speak English.

My path took me past a huge quarry. I enquired if they needed me to run the rock crusher for a few hours, they didnt speak English.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - Whilst I was mainly walking down a road, there was plenty to see. And unusually for Japan, most of the way had a footpath, so I would not get run over

Whilst I was mainly walking down a road, there was plenty to see. And unusually for Japan, most of the way had a footpath, so I would not get run over by quarry trucks.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - After about an hour I arrived at Ichihara station. A tiny station.

After about an hour I arrived at Ichihara station. A tiny station.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - And here is the previously mentioned leaf spotting train, with window facing seats. In certain areas with high levels of colored leaf density, the tra

And here is the previously mentioned leaf spotting train, with window facing seats. In certain areas with high levels of colored leaf density, the train slows down to walking pace, and the carriage echoes with gasps of astonishment.


Japan-Kyoto-Kurama-Hiking-Shrine - After such a nice day I stopped off for a natural dandy perm. Everyone in Japan is a dandy.

After such a nice day I stopped off for a natural dandy perm. Everyone in Japan is a dandy.


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