Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Akita Vacation (Part 2)

The vacation continues! And, we're still in Tamagawa Onsen (hot spring).

This is some amazing terrain. Other than the paved walking trail it looks like we're in prehistoric times. A dinosaur coming over the hill top would not seem out of place.

This stream runs white with sulfur.

Since it is believed that this place has cancer curing properties a lot of the visitors are senior citizens.

Steaming hot streams that smell like rotten eggs.

The huts in the background are for people to lay on the hot ground to get the cancer curing benefits.

A closer look.

Just wandering around.

One last look back before moving on.

Another night and a new place to spend the night. Our room at Kuroyu Onsen. Notice the kerosene heater blazing away in the corner of the room. It's the end of May when most places in Japan are enjoying warm summer weather. Not here!

Gas burners in the communal kitchen. They look primitive but they get the job done.

Another guest house in the morning mist. The hot bath is the building down the hill behind it.

After breakfast we hit the road in our rental van for some more sightseeing. We stopped at this pond to see the mizubasho flowers.

These flowers only bloom in marshlands.

And, the land around this pond is very marshy!

Strange weather; look in one direction it's grey sky with the promise of rain (or maybe snow!).

Look in the opposite direction and it's paradise.

One should not step off the board walk unless one is wearing high rubber boots.

Lovely atmosphere here.

A view from the visitors center. Yes, the white stuff behind the row of cars is snow.

As we proceed up the road it became apparent to me that I was not well prepared for this area; I was wearing shots and a sweatshirt. I needed a snow suit!

This is crazy! Just around the corner people were still out on the slopes with snowboards.

After a delicious lunch in a mountain hut we turned around and descended to lower grounds that were slightly warmer. After spending an hour at a hot spring soaking in steaming hot water and getting our core temperatures back to normal we went for another nature walk.

This place is similar to Tamagawa onsen.

These mud holes are like mini volcanoes. It's hard to tell in the picture that the mud is bubbling up. Hot as hell too!

A steaming hot pond.

Not a suitable pond for skinny-dipping.

The bubbling mud volcanoes rise from the pond surface.

A last look back before retreating to civilization.

Our last day! A stop at lake Tazawako on our way to the airport.

Man! there are a lot of fish in this lake.
Well, that's it for the Akita vacation. I traveled with a great group of people and we had a lot of fun. Of course if I ever come back here again I will bring a winter coat and long pants; no mater what time of year I visit.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Akita Vacation (Part 1)

V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N! That's it, that's what we want! So, off to Akita prefecture we went. First stop was the town of Kakunodate. 

This is where they sell locally made soy sauce.

Inside is real nice.

Since I was traveling with six women this was a must see place.While I was taking pictures they were busy buying soy sauce.

Products on display.

After the shopping frenzy was over it was time for a walk around the town.

We walked, other tourist opted for a rickshaw ride.

Looks like fun.

More local products being sold at a corner shop. Udon noodles.

This is where we stayed for the first couple of days.

It's called Zenikawa Onsen.

It was nice to wake up to the sound of this mountain stream in the morning.

View from the front.

More sight seeing. Ancient village site.

Getting back to our roots. Well, somebodies roots.

One of the nice things about Akita is that there is plenty of wide open space.

And, we walked all over that wide open space.

We were told that this is also an ancient burial site. So, we said a silent prayer asking forgiveness for stomping around all over the place.

Knowing that it was an ancient burial site made it like walking across a mine field without mines.

I'm loving the green color here.

Another day another place to visit. Lake Towada.

On the boardwalk.

This is peaceful.

A lakeside statue of two naked women about to touch each other. There was also a large group of giggling school girls. You can't make this stuff up. I love it!

The nature trails around the lake are spectacular.

Deep in the woods we find the entrance to a Shinto shrine.

At least I think it's a shrine. Either way it's nicely tucked away deep in the forest.

Time to make a wish.

Nice trees.

Another day, another place to visit. Welcome to Tamagawa Onsen.

They say the waters of Tamagawa Onsen can help cure cancer.

Sulfurous steam erupts out of the ground everywhere.

To the right of the picture is a small yellow crater constantly belching out steam

The sound is like a small jet engine.
Stay tuned for part 2 of the Akita adventure vacation!

Thanks for stopping by!