Mountains of Myoko-Togakushi Area
The area includes the northern region of Nagano Prefecture and the southwestern area of Niigata Prefecture, and is designated as the Myoko-Togakushi Renzan National Park.
It is one of the areas with the heaviest snowfalls in Japan, with over 1 meter of snow accumulation in the mountainous areas. Home to many ski resorts, the area is also popular among backcountry ski lovers. Having a natural forest of beech as well as many trees of water oak and Japanese white birch, the foliage in autumn is beautiful.
Some of the area’s representative mountains include Mt. Myoko (Myoko-san), Mt. Hiuchi (Hiuchi-yama) and Mt. Amakazari (Amakazari-yama) in Niigata Prefecture, as well as Mt. Togakushi (Togakushi-yama ), Mt. Takazuma (Takazuma-yama) , Mt. Kurohime (Kurohime-yama) and Mt. Iizuna (Iizuna-yama) in Nagano Prefecture.
Mt. Myoko is an active volcano with a unique shape, home to many hot springs and ski resorts at its foot.
Mt. Togakushi prospered as the mountain of Shugendo ascetic practices. It is also the birthplace of a school of ninja known as Togakushi-ryu.
Being a beautiful beech forest area, taking an easy hike through the countryside forest at the foot of the mountain is highly recommended. Hikers can learn about the history of mountain worship and the culture of the region of heavy snow.
- Traverse of Mt. Hiuchi and Mt. Myoko from Mt. Sasagamine Traversing route with a variety of natural features including wetlands, ponds and rock ridges.
- Hike of a Sacred Mountain, Mt. Togakushi; Round Trip from the Togakushi-jinja Shrine Okusha Hike along a ridge above sheer cliffs toward an age old place of ascetic devotion.
- Japan’s Own Long Trail: Shin-etsu Trail Hike on the ridgeline surrounded by the virgin beech forest.
- Mt. Amakazari Round trip from Otari Onsen (hot spring) Round trip through the beautiful mountain famous for beech forest and alpine plants.