Monday 2 December 2019

Tenpaizan 天拝山, Ozanoyama 大佐野山, Kuroganeyama 黒金山, Sanshichoyama 三市町境界山 and Ushikubiyama 牛頸山 2019/12/1

Tenpaizan 天拝山, Ozanoyama 大佐野山, Kuroganeyama 黒金山, Sanshichoyama 三市町境界山 and Ushikubiyama 牛頸山 2019/12/1

One of the joys of returning to well known and local mountains is working out ways to get more out of the hike by taking new routes adding distance and finding more interesting to see and experience. For this hike we started at Tenpaizan, it doesn't matter too much how you climb Tenpaizan so either follow the large path or take the more true hiking route to the right which starts from the temple. After reaching the top you need to go down behind the shrine and the viewpoint tower and you will soon come to a crossroads. There is a painted sign below the main signs which points to Ushikubiyama 牛頸山 only in Japanese. From here you follow the route towards Kiyama (Kizan) until you come to another crossroads after about half an hour with more painted signs, take the route to the right and up into the mountain on the left.

For this hike we made a lot of use of Yamapp which you can download from the android or Apple app store you can find more about it here and it even has English options. You can download the maps for free and you don't need an internet connection to use them. There are also a whole bunch of social options which I haven't made much use of but the maps work great!

 We started by heading up Tenpaizan using the route next to Buzō-ji 武蔵寺 temple. It isn't a tough route but it is much more like a real hike than the more commonly used path. The other benefit of this route is that there are no steps!

We followed this up to the crossroads described above and headed towards Ushikubiyama.

While the hiking route isn't too tough it is a real hiking route with some distance to cover and plenty of ropes to climb up on. Later one there were some ledges that you need to tread carefully on and take things slowly. 

Beautiful coniferous woodland
Ozanoyama 大佐野山 summit signpost. Not much to see. 
Kuroganeyama 黒金山 summit signpost

The third mountain if you count Tenpaizan. This is Kuroganeyama 黒金山 which translates as "Black gold mountain" 

The trail goes directly under an electric pylon
Watch the drop on the right. This was more risky than it looks

We can across this old broken down bridge. You could easily go round. Part of the bridge could be seen further down stream so it must have been broken during a large amount of rain in a storm. 

From here it was more climbing and fantastic forest walking to get to the next mountain Sanshichoyama 三市町境界山 which is the meeting point of three old city areas. 

Parts of the area are managed woodland. This area had been felled from wood. 

Finally we arrived at Ushikubiyama 牛頸山 which translates as "Cow neck mountain" There are two large benches here and some great views of the area. 

A panoramic I took to show the whole view.

I counted the tree rings which revealed the trees in the area to be around 40-50 years old. 

It didn't came long to reach the mountain road. We stopped using Yamapp at this point and followed it down using short cuts to reach Ushikubi Resevoir and park ダム記念公園

 We didn't spend long around the reservoir as we had visited many times before. Instead we headed for the Hirano heights 平野ハイツ入口(バス)and Ushikubi bus stops down the hill. 

The hike has plenty to see and is well worth the effort! 

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