Sunday 10 June 2018

Tenpaizan 天拝山 2018.5.3

Tenpaizan 天拝山 Hike 2018.5.3

Tenpaizan is a short feature filled hike which only takes a couple of hours but can be greatly rewarding. 

There are many newer hikes for this mountain check out the mountain page above with details on different routes, different season and how to extend to add Kiyama for a longer hike! 

Access: Take the JR Kagoshima line to Futsukaichi Station, For there it is a shortish walk to the "Tenpaizan Historical Natural Park". (Note; There is a JR station called Tenpaizan/Tempaizan however ignore this as it will take you to the Aeon small instead)

Gear: Any sports shoes would be suitable. Hiking pole may be useful. Bring water although there are vending machines jsut before entering the park and convenience stores on the way. 

Map of Tenpaizan

Tenpaizan has a clear looped path with the right side on this map being slightly less well kept making it a little more of a challenge. 
Statue of the founder of the Temple at Tenpaizan.

The start of the trail is a short walk up past the statue and up some stairs. From there I followed the route into the woods and the real hike began. 

Large Stone Torii Marks the trail start

After a short walk I came to large stone Torii (Shrine gate) which marked the start of the hike. There is plenty of signage on Tenpaizan as well as signs to warn you against feeding the wild boar which unfortunately didn't reveal themselves to me  during the hike

Cat Shrine

Araho shrine
 After a short while I came to a curious little shrine with lots of cats. They are clearly being fed and some were quite fat! The leaf littered path kept gently winding upwards toward the peak with the canopy letting through beams of light every so often.

Upon reaching the summit I saw the mountain Shrine marking the peak of the mountain. There is a nice view of Fukuoka reaching to the Shioji mountains which allows you to take in the characteristic urban sprawl and rice fields.

Summit Shrine 天拝山社

View from the viewing platform on the summit

The way down

The path down starts just behind the shrine (Or in front depending on which way you came up). On the day down there was a wall spring water fall with yet another shrine gate next to it. Unfortunately the Shrine gate was damaged possibly due to fallen branches. 
Damaged Torii

A bizarre type of bacteria that grows on Fungi: Monotropastrum humile

A Fox Shrine

Lake at the entrance to Buzoji

Buzoji Temple at the base of the Mountain. 

Explanation of Buzoji - The oldest Buddhist temple in Kyushu

The temple is a great way to finish the hike with the wonderful smell of incense in the air and the sound of traditional Japanese music playing. 

The Hike took around 2 hours not including the journey too and from the station and this including lunch at the Summit. 

I returned to Tenpaizan with the kids the following weekend, The weather with a contrast to the first day as it rained a lot making the kids grumpy but the forest come alive with the patter of rain drops. 

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