Photographer's Note

The second day of my trip to Nagano was at Kamikochi, it was raining the entire day but it just made photos that much more interesting with the mist and the mountain ranges.

Kamikochi is...........

Tucked away in the Northern Alps at 1500m is the beautiful mountaineering and hiking resort of KAMIKOCHI , nestling in the Azusa valley. Hardly more than a bus station and a handful of hotels scattered along the Azusa-gawa, Kamikochi has some stunning Alpine scenery, which can only be viewed between late April and the end of October before heavy snow blocks off the narrow roads and the resort shuts down for winter. As a result, during season the places buzzes with tourists and the prices at its few hotels and restaurants are as steep as the surrounding mountains.

Kamikochi's history as a tourist destination dates back to the turn of the century, when British missionary Walter Weston helped popularize the area as a base for climbing the craggy peaks known as the Northern Alps. The highest mountain here is the 3190-metre Hotaka-dake, followed by Yari-ga-take (3180m). Both are extremely popular climbs; one trail up Yariga take has been dubbed the Ginza Juso (traverse), after Tokyo's busy shopping area, because it gets so crowded. However, the congestion on the mountain is nothing compared to that found at its base, where, at the height of the season, thousands of day-trippers tramp through the well-marked trails along the Azusa valley. The best way to appreciate Kamikochi is to stay overnight so you can experience the valley minus the crowds in the evening and early morning. Alternatively, come here in June, when frequent showers put off fair-weather walkers.

I hope you like it

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Additional Photos by Dan Leung (Kenny10pin) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 4744 W: 0 N: 5667] (19301)
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