Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Winter Fantasy

Since around the turn of the year, it’s been quite cold. In some region, an unexpected heavy snow stranded a lot of cars or people on their way to returning home and I understand an inconvenience and harm it causes us on our daily life. But you know, there’s always a bright side. It also has attracted by providing us with a beautiful piece of scenery.

Mt. Takami (1248m) is not so high mountain but very famous for its beautiful shape and its beautiful frosts on the trees. Actually 樹氷(soft rime) is not a work of art made of snow but white ice that water droplets in fogs form by freezing to the surface of trees usually with strong wind and air temperature under -5゜C.
(I used this picture from here)

Last Sunday, my husband and I went to see it for the first time in two years.

Starting from the entrance of the mountain. We walked up through these Japanese cedar trees.

menacing winter sky

approaching the top of Mt.Takami

Descending down on the north side of the mountain. The strong northwest wind made the characteristic shape of these rimes called “Tails of prawns”. Frosts were extending as long as 30cm to the windward. Strong cold wind blew off the fine ice on the trees and hit us on the face.

Still they really looked like cherry blossoms in full bloom in the mountain. If only there was no wind and those branches of trees shined reflecting sunshine! We had to wait another chance.

The course was 10km in all. It took more time than I had expected. Exhausted but I'm thinking of where I should go next.


Takami Ceder Tree estimated 700 years old


  1. Hello Cosmos!
    It must have been a hard walk in such frigid climate and a long distance!
    All of your photos are very beautiful. Especially I like the sixth the best. Yes! literally they look like “Tails of prawns”. Is the man with the outfit in the photo your husband? Although I am so sensitive to the cold, it is always lovely for me to see photos of beautiful snow landscapes.
    Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos and your walk!

  2. Much more beautiful shots than I’ve ever seen on the advertisement posters! Silver trees with frosts, leaves of ice, and frigid sky, are making beautiful monochrome-like pictures with indigo-blue tint. While seeing, I feel cold and I can hear the cracking sounds under your feet and the sound of your breath as you trod up and down the mountain path.

    So, where are you, cosmos? I guess you’d say “I’m buried in the snow.” Just kidding.

  3. This winter many parts of Japan have been shrouded in deep snow, even Kagoshima.
    I'm really waiting for snowfalls in Nara.

    I like the picture where the frozewn forest looks like the cloud of white cherry flowers in full bloom. How beautyful it is!!

    Did you need special climbing tools?

  4. I'd thought that soft rime was made of snow.

    It must be wonderful views for your eyes, though not everyone can have the profit to see taking toil for 10km walk on the frozen road.
    I enjoyed the interesting shapes of soft rime thanks to your great photos.
    That's just beautiful!

  5. Hi Redrose,

    Thank you for your comment.
    Usually we went out by car and parked at the foot of the mountain, but this time somehow we were not able to put snow chains on tires successfully so from the nearest station we took a bus to the destination.
    The bus service was not available so often, we had a lot of time there by the time the bus
    picked us back. Still I am a terribly slow climber ,which often irritates my husband, we barely made it to the bus about 4:00 in the afternoon.(from 10:00 in the morning)

    Yes, the man ahead of me is my dear husband.

  6. Thank you , Stardust, for your comment.
    Since there was no fresh snow, there was a beaten track to follow thanks to the earlier visitors.
    But off the beaten track, it was almost 40 or 50cm deep. In some slope ,my husband lost the sight of the track so I had a hard time pulling up my legs stuck in the snow.
    Can you hear my breath, out of my breath?
    I had to realize it was getting harder for me to climb the mountain but once I came back safely, I find myself thinking about next.

  7. Snowwhite,

    When I first saw the soft rimes more than ten years ago, I thought they were really like cherry blossoms in thin shade of pinkish hue, blooming all over the mountain. Taking a closer look, milky crystal-like frosts on tiny branches were the fine delicate works of art.
    You can go and see for yourself.

    Necessity is climbing irons and sticks and winter boots, winter clothes. Thermal underwears are advisable.
    Thank you for your comment, Snowwhite.

  8. Haricot,

    I am a slow clumsy climber, to say the least, but as long as I will not stop stepping forward, I can get to the top.
    Though the mountains I have chosen are the ones for beginners, sometimes or always ,I should say, I have a hard time climbing up.
    As a result, I can get a wonderful view, breathe fresh air, get energies from the woods, appreciating that my husband takes me there and a bit sore legs following day.

    Why don’t you try, Haricot?

  9. ! that snow is beautiful!
    nice photos
    greetings from Barcelona

  10. Wow, from Barcelona! I'm very happy you visited my blog. Thank you, Beatriz.

  11. What a beautiful icy trees as cherry blossom are at their best! You are lucky to see such lovely scean and your patience with climbing mountain is great. I have heard it's a fast rule to climb slowly and never stop. But it's impossible for me.
    By the way, in the last week I drove on the Route 9 that you wrote about. Luckily it was not heavy snow when we went through around there, though.

  12. Sarah,

    I don't know where Route 9 runs, but I went through Sakurai to Ouda that day. Around Ouda the road got icy so my husband tried snow chains on tires. However he found the new chains unfit for the tires. It's not as is often the case with him that he didn't try them beforehand.
    So we returned to Haibara Station and from there, we took a special bus to the entrance of the mountain.It was lucky we were in time to catch the last bus to leave there otherwise we would've given it up and returned home.

    By the way, where were you heading last week ?
    Did you have good new year holidays, Sarah?

  13. Hello Cosmos, I'm stopping to comment on this post because the snow scenes are so familiar to me - your walk through the Japanese Cedars reminds me of my own trail through the Lodgepoles of Spooky Woods behind my house in Breckenridge, CO. Your photos are amazing - I am drawn to the one of your Husband walking downward through the frost-laden trees. The sky is so menacing. My mother often called those dark clouds "wind clouds." Ten km is far to navigate up a mountain and back in snow and wind. I would have been tired, too!

  14. This post with its fine photography shows you to be an artist. Wow! Excellent quality landscapes of beautiful mountain snow and breathtaking icy or snow-laden trees!

  15. Cosmos, it is so interesting to be here, in your blog! Japan is so nice and unusual! I'm glad to meet you.

  16. These are really stunning photographs! Thank you for sharing it with us.


Thank you for visiting and leaving comments. It's really encouraging!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...