Climbing Mt Fuji

They say your a fool if you don’t do it, but twice the fool if you do it again!

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J and I set out at 12ish on Wed planning on an overnight stay and plenty of time to get to the top for sunrise.

We took the Yoshida Trail from the 5th station.

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The very beginning of the trail. J with his Mt Fuji climbing stick.

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Workmen fixing the path.

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The path definitely got harder to walk on some was volcanic rock that had a loose top layer so you sunk and slipped around. The rest was solid rock as above and you had to clamber over it.

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After a hour and half we started to pass the stations there are several 7th and 8th stations along the way. Here you can get your stick branded, buy some sake or go to the facilities (for 200yen of course).

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We soldiered on heading for the 8.5 station.

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As it was early on in climbing season the paths weren’t too congested, just the occasional organised tour made it seem busy. It was mountain etiquette to say hello to everyone you passed and give occasional words of encouragement.

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We finally reached our bed for the night at 6.30pm just as the sun was setting.
It cost 6500yen each to stay in the luxurious sleeping bag, but it also included a hot meal (curry).
Whilst we were there NHK were filming, some of the women were fawning over the female presenter I imagine she was the Japanese equivalent of Holly Willoughby.

I had the worst nights sleep and eventually 2am came around and it was time to get up. We joined the path and started the final 2 hr slog in the dark to the summit.

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4.30am and what this was all for – sunrise from the top of Mt Fuji!

It was incredibly cold at the top and none of the shops or facilities were open yet. We took a few pictures and J went to look in the crater.

Just after 5am we started to come back down. I found the descent much harder mostly because I was tired and had barely any sleep but also because the descent impacted hard on my knees and hips. The usual descent trail was closed following the recent typhoon so we had to use the ascent trail.

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We eventually reached the 5th station at 10.30am.

Although I’m really proud we got to the top it’s not an experience Im in a hurry to replicate!!!

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