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Mt. Kinpu is one of the top 100 famous mountains in Japan and is located in-between Yamanashi and Nagano prefectures and it has an altitude of 2599m. The climb to the top is quite interesting with equal parts incline, decline, and straight areas. The trail starting from the odarumi montain hut (odarumi yamagoya) is about 2h30min hike (one way). In the photos below you’ll notice the trail has both dirt paths and fenced areas to follow. 



                  Close to the top, on the final stretch of the route, the trees start to clear and the forest landscape that has accompanied us thus far gives way to low vegetation. There appears a wide area almost exclusively of rock and stone making it feel like the top of the mountain is an entirely different world.



                    Throughout the climb it’s possible to see Mt. Fuji in the distance from various stops along the way – even on cloudy days! Although Mt. Fuji can be seen from the ground in Kofu, the capital of Yamanashi, it’s impossible to see in it inclement weather. From Mt. Kinpu you can see Mt. Fuji from above the clouds!

                     When we reached a height above 2365m we noticed there was snow on some parts of the trail.


         One of the best parts of climbing Mt. Kinpu is the diversity of the landscape and different types of vegetation you’ll encounter as you hike the trail. And, when you look to your left you see Yamanashi Prefecture but if you look to the right side you see Nagano.


      There is another less popular trail that connects to Shosenkyo (just outside Kofu City) to climb Mt. Kinpu. According to our guide, Mr. Sugimoto, the journey takes 2 days and one night.

The trail that we took was the simplest route, which only took 2 and half hours. It started at 2365m from Odaimitoge (大 弛 峠), about 300m from the top.



      It was amazing how much the trees and foliaged changed as we hiked up the mountain and there were pine trees everywhere we looked! Also, the bark of the trees released a strong evergreen smell. Mr. Sugimoto, our guide, said that it had a peculiar aromatic quality like that of ginger and that because it stores well, we could take some home with us to smell whenever we like.

      At the final stretch of the hike we were surprised to see huge stones in stark juxtaposition against the forest. It looked like they were placed there supernaturally – certainly not by human hands!



       This is the sign that denotes Mt. Kinpu as one of the 100 famous mountains of Yamanashi! Is it also included in the 100 best of Japan.




Access: Taxi: 90min. From the JR Enzan station.

By Car: 120min. From the IC Katsunuma at the Chuo highway road.

Published on

  • April 15, 2021


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