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Mt. Karamatsu and Mt. Goryu Traverse of Happo-one Ridge to Tomi-one Ridge

This course traverses a ridgeline route across two mountains of the Ushiro Tateyama Peaks.
  • Duration
    2Days 13Hours
    Highest Point
    2814m
    Elevation Gain
    1288m
  • Skill Level
    Fitness Level
    Gear Level

Mt. Karamatsu (Karamatsu-dake) and Mt. Goryu (Goryu-dake) are located in the northern part of the Northern Japanese Alps on the border of Nagano Prefecture and Toyama Prefecture. The two mountains belong to the Ushiro Tateyama Peaks.
Mt. Karamatsu is listed amongst the Japan 300 Famous Mountains while Mt. Goryu is listed amongst the Japan 100 Famous Mountains.
This course introduces a ridgeline traverse route offering great views that uses a gondola or ski lifts to reduce the elevation difference and ascends from Happo-one Ridge to Mt. Karamatsu before descending from Mt. Goryu to Tomi-one Ridge.

Take the gondola and two ski lifts from the foot of the mountain and start walking from the Happoike Sanso mountain hut.
There is a ridge trail and a traverse trail but proceed along the boardwalk, which is easier to walk. The trails come together at the 2nd cairn, which is equipped with restrooms.
Ascend the gentle scree slope amongst the creeping pines before ascending from the 3rd cairn while enjoying the view of Happo-ike Pond to the bottom right.
As you ascend from Happo-ike Pond through the forest to Shimonokanba, you will again be in the creeping pine zone and be treated to a great view.
After ascending the scree slope over Maruyama and traversing the ridge you will arrive at the Karamatsudake Chojo Sanso. This is where you will stay the night.
The next day, you will make a round trip to Karamatsudake Chojo Sanso beyond the scree slope.
From the Karamatsudake Chojo Sanso, first pass through the perilous Ushikubi, then descend the scree slope before ascending and descending the rocky ridgeline, which has chains to assist your climb.
As you cross Mt. Daikoku (Daikoku-dake) you will eventually arrive at a gentle scree trail, which you will descend to the mountain’s lowest saddle.
From here, you will climb up the other side amongst the shrubs and creeping pines and arrive at the Goryu Sanso mountain hut after passing over Mt. Shiratake.
From Goryu Sanso, you will climb the rocky area, which has a number of chains to assist your climb, up to Mt. Goryu. Reaching the summit takes around an hour.
The return trip will start with a descent from Mt. Goryu before descending Tomi-one (Tohmi-one) Ridge from a fork in the trail located at Mt. Shiratake. After passing beyond a chain area and then passing Mt. Nishitomi (Nishi-tohmi-yama), which features a succession of narrow ridges, you will reach a gentle downward slope amongst the shrubs.
After passing over Mt. Otomi (Tohmi-yama), passing over Mt. Nakatomi (Naka-tohmi-yama) and Mt. Kotomi (Kotohmi-yama) via boardwalks and scree trails, and walking past Jizo-no-kashira, you will arrive at a gondola station. Take the gondola down the mountain.

Other Info

There is also a route that loops around Happo-ike Pond from the 3rd cairn before coming together with the other routes at Happo-one Ridge. The pond has good views and is also a popular photo spot on days with no wind as the three mountains of the Hakuba Sanzan (Hakuba Three Peaks) are reflected in the pond’s surface. Happo-one Ridge and Tomi-one Ridge both offer beautiful alpine plants in summer as well as beautiful autumn.

Notes

The Ushiro Tateyama Peaks as a whole have gentler slopes on the Toyama Prefecture and steeper slopes on the Nagano Prefecture side.
Most of the traverses from Mt. Karamatsu to Mt. Shiratake are on the Toyama Prefecture side, but there is a need to be careful of slipping down as there is a series of rocky areas and chain areas on the ridgeline.

Route Map

Elevation Map

Height (m)
Horizontal Distance (km)

Spec

Duration
2Days 13Hours
Highest Point
2814m
Elevation Gain
1288m
Horizontal Distance
22.3Km
Skill Level
Fitness Level
Gear Level

On the Trail

Sleeping

Happoike Sanso, Karamatsu Sanso, Goryu Sanso

Eating

Happoike Sanso, View Point Restaurant ALPS360

Hot-Springs

Mimizuku-no-Yu

Instagram

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Access

Take the JR Chuo Line from Tokyo Station to Shinjuku Station (Approx. 15 minutes). From Shinjuku Station, transfer to the JR Chuo Line Limited Express and get off at Hakuba Station (Approx. 4 hours).
Take the Alpico Kotsu bus from Hakuba Station to the Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal (Approx. 5 minutes). The walk from the bus terminal to the gondola base station takes approximately 15 minutes. After returning to the base of the mountain you can take a shuttle bus from Escal Plaza to Kamishiro Station (JR Oito Line). It operates every day during the summer mountain season and on weekends in the fall.

Links

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