climbing the better half of fuji

Fuji Travel Blog

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One of the first things I heard when I came to Japan was how horrible climbing Fuji was supposed to be.
In fact, there is a saying in Japan that goes along the lines of "A wise man climbs fuji once, a fool climbs it twice".
I was tempted to relinquish my wise man status and not climb it at all.
And in fact, after several failed attempts to arrange trips up Japan's most famous peak, I was almost resigned to it.
But then, my friend and I decided to do something different.
Most people take a bus to 5th station, and then walk to the 8th station, spend a night sleeping in the cramped and over priced huts and do the final stretch in time for sunrise.
We instead spent the night at Fuji-Yoshida and walked from town (at 5.30am) to Kawaguchiko 5th station.

As we walked up the hill towards the base of fuji, an almost full moon was setting, and the first lights of Day were peaking over the horizon.
Fuji-san, majestic and already snow capped, stood in front of us.
It was freezing cold, and as we climbed, we would stop for a break, only to quickly start again before our fingers froze.
The leaves were changing, and although there weren't so many of the famous red maples, the scenery was beautiful. best of all we had the track to ourselves.
Expecting to climb for 6-8 hours, we were pleasantly surprised when we arrived at Kawaguchi-ko at 10.30am.
We caught the bus down, slightly disappointed that in the 5 hours since we'd started, the mountain had become cloaked in cloud.

We decided, next time we decided to climb, we would make the summit. climb to 5th station, rest up until about midnight, then rise and climb the rest of the way.
wise man, or fool. the bottom half of fuji, is definitely the pretty one.

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Kawaguchi-ko 5th station
Kawaguchi-ko 5th station
for those who want to keep going
for those who want to keep going
photo by: jennjeff1