Time  8 hours 39 minutes

Coordinates 1804

Uploaded February 15, 2015

Recorded February 2015

-
-
5,871 f
1,940 f
0
2.9
5.9
11.75 mi

Viewed 590 times, downloaded 10 times

near Funatsu, Yamanashi (Japan)

Snow hike at Mitsutoge

From Kawaguchiko station the trail is almost flat with a clear trace all the way, some icy stretches but easily negotiable. We put on 6-point crampons around midway when traverses sent Y-san a bit tense.
I wanted to test which of my two pairs of gloves was warmest but after 15 minutes I was sweating from both hands and packed all the heavy artillery and went on with thin liners, sufficient for the day.

At the huts near the summit a lot of people were having lunch but beyond we didn't meet any soul, more than 50% of the track had been obliterated by the wind and it was a much dramatic setting with wind gusts possibly exceeding 15 m/s. At most we got snow up to knee level but most of the time it was only around mid-calf. The slope is steep after the summit, I was navigating based on sight (following the ridge) and checking with the GPS not to take a wrong turn. It was not possible to find any indication of a trail with the snow and the absence of tracks on the North side of the mountain. I find it was a lot of fun for such a low mountain but Y-san didn't seem to enjoy it that much.

At one point I dropped my GPS, the small leash going around my wrist just broke as I was running downhill. I thought I may have dropped it more uphill and we wasted 10 minutes walking back uphill. Eventually I found it lying at the spot where I realized it was no longer in my hand.

We passed another summit and the trail then followed the ridge, the uphills were facing south with considerably less snow yet the downhills had more than 50 cm and locally cornices had developed in outlandish gravity-defying shapes which I still cannot explain and wouldn't believe if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes.

After reaching the final summit at 15:30 we could eventually begin the descent to the station, but not too fast, there was a traverse to negotiate first with no tracks at all and nothing to hold on to. It was not really delicate but losing balance would have been a bad idea.

Alternating between running and waiting phases to give a chance Y-san and K-san to follow me, we reached the station at 5 PM.

Overall a very contrasted snow hike: easy and uneventful up to the summit, wild and raw after the summit. Take your pick, in my case I enjoyed much more the second part.

More pictures here:
https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B8dPS_LBwxeLfm84QlNndW4yTHJDS2xZclZnYWpraDBYUC1JdTdtRmIxTE5VcGpKTThTZUk&usp=sharing
Refuge

HUT 1-11h10

HUT_1-11h10
Summit

三ツ峠山

MITSU_1145
Summit

精八山

SEIHACIH_1340
Summit

本社ヶ丸

HONJAGAMARU_1417
Summit

ヤグラ

LAST_SUM_1530

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