Coordinates 1584

Uploaded December 10, 2014

Recorded December 2014

9,675 f
5,659 f
7.38 mi

Viewed 377 times, downloaded 8 times

near Yokomiyama (Japan)

Day climb to Akadake.

Just 2 days after going to Gongendake (see: ) I was back in Yatsugatake, this time the objective was its highest peak, Akadake (2899m). A late start from Kawasaki and we got to Kobuchizawa around 2:00 AM. This time the contrast between my very thin summer sleeping bag and S-san's -25 degrees one was so striking we couldn't help but laugh at the situation. Anyway I had prepared an additional pair of socks and also inserted hand warmer in my socks so it was much more comfortable this time.

We started walking from Minoto around 7:00 AM by -10 degrees, from the start I had only base layer and hard shell, it was cool for the first minutes but then I never regretted wearing only 2 layers. Up to Gyoja hut, nothing particularly interesting. It was overcast in the East direction and in the distance in our back we could distinguish some blue sky. A relatively long break outside the hut, where we met 3 other guys, and the weather was getting slightly better. From there we started to use the ice axe, the snow was well packed from the trail head but not it was going to get steep, no ice yet so it was easily doable without crampons.

Midway through the ridge before getting to the interesting part (after the intersection the rocky part with chains) I put on the crampons. While I was waiting for my partner a pair of climber reached my level and with heaps of gears were getting reading to ascend a more technical route. The added traction due to the crampons was welcome and a few minutes later we got to the intersection, there was a bit of wind but nothing worth mentioning really.

In the rocky stretch the sky turned blue and we had a great view of the rock formation around the summit, yet we couldn't see all the way to Iodake. All chains were at least partly visible and by pulling it was possible to uncover the parts hidden under packed snow (most of the time). The snow was well packed and solid ice was present sporadically, I used the crampons was unavoidable and the front points were useful. As we got higher the wind stopped and it felt as comfortable as an autumn hike. The sheer slopes and narrow paths among the rocks would probably feel more impressive in the midst of a snow storm yet we reached the summit effortlessly. Up there no wind at all and I could lay my camera on a rock and set the timer, we sat on the snow and didn't feel cold whatsoever.

Originally the plan was to go down the same way but the weather was all but ideal and we decided to loop via Jizonogashira, we passed a group climbing in the opposite direction and soon got to tenbosou hut. On that ridge we could see to the East the plains and lower mountains still not concerned by the winter. Jizo one was less impressive than what I though, a few chains and stairs but it felt that more snow would make it trickier to negotiate.

At one point it was unclear whether to go left or right, most tracks were going right and it turned out to be the wrong choice, after a few dozens of meters a short but delicate traverse was to be negotiated. It was not dangerous since 3 meters below there was a flat, wide and stable patch of hard snow and further below trees to catch anybody who may have fallen. Anyway it was a good practice to negotiate delicate terrain. After that the slope got less steep and I removed my crampons to run. In no time we were back to Gyoja hut and then started the long and rather flat (which translates also as rather boring) trail in the forest to get back to the car.

Overall it was a much easier climb that I had anticipated, no wind, most likely above -10 degrees all day. The weather turned from overcast to mainly sunny and it felt like an autumn day.

More pictures here:

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2 Bunzaburo


3 chains


4 Akadake summit


5 Akadakesancho sanso


6 Akadake tenbosou


7 Jizo one

8 forest


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