Monday, April 14, 2014

On The Road Again! Yamanashi Prefecture

On the road again, as in Overnight Trip! This past weekend we hit the road for a hot spring Inn deep in the mountains of Yamanashi Prefecture. But first, we had to get there and that took us past some of the Mt. Fuji 5 lakes.

This may seem a bit self indulgent but the scenes around Lake Kawaguchii of Mt. Fuji were so nice I took quite a few pictures. It was such a nice day and the cherry blossoms around the lake were just starting to bloom.



A little further down the road dried reeds took the place of cherry blossoms.



Sometimes the world looks better  through a curtain of reeds.


Also... near the lake is a shop that specializes in products made of silk. Like this cherry blossom patterned parasol.

And, lantern...

And, other stuff.



Decorated silk cocoons.


Anyway, after that we crossed over the hills and into the fruit belt of Yamanashi and discovered that the peach trees were in full magnificent bloom.


I had no idea that peach tree blossoms were so beautiful.

Everyone talks about plum and cherry blossoms but one has never lived until they're standing in the middle of a peach orchard on a day like today.


That's the southern alps in the background.

Back on the road and a whole lot more driving, we finally arrived at our Inn. A simple and comfortable room.

A view of the front entrance as I go back to the car for a few things (like drinks!).

This is our ride... affectionately known as PGH, or PeeGee for short. It's a Suzuki mini jeep that suits our needs perfectly, and it's fun to drive too!

Back in the room it's time for a cup of sake (rice wine). After that I parked the camera until the next morning.

Next morning we decided to go for a little nature walk before breakfast.

The owner of the Inn told us that if we followed the trail we'd see a nice waterfall.
So, we followed...

And we followed...

And, then we found that a landslide had wiped out the trail.

So, we retreated.

Back down the catwalk.

And... back to the Inn where we had breakfast, checked out and headed home!
It was a wonderful overnight trip and I'm looking forward to our next.

Thanks for stopping by!
Mike

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Cherry Blossom Viewing at Oookagawa River 2014

It's that time of year again. Time to get out and immerse oneself in viewing the glorious cherry blossoms. Emi and I went to the Oookagaw river after work Wednesday and had a splendid time walking along the river taking in the beauty and wonder of the cherry trees in full bloom.



It is truly hard to capture all this with a camera. A person really needs to get out and be there to get the full treatment.


A fellow photographer doing his best to capture mother nature at her finest.


Never to old to enjoy.


One of the many bridges over the Oookagawa.

This guy better keep his eye on the road.

It's after 5:00 pm and many people are gathering to start the viewing party.

What better way to enjoy some drinks and food is there?



Vendors are set up all along the river providing many tasty treats.

Party!






This side of the river is a little less crowded.



Back to the party crazy side of the river.



This guy was selling the biggest yakatori I've ever seen.


Nothing like a well stocked bar.

After spending quite a bit of time walking around we popped into this place for a cold beer and a meal.

Afterwards we stopped by the Jazz bar Chigusa for a night cap and to enjoy the music.

Chigusa is a cozy little place with a massive selection of jazz LPs and an excellent sound system.

This was our first time to stop by here and it won't be our last - it's a jazz enthusiasts dream come true.

After listening to a couple of LPs it was time to call it a night and head home. It was such a wonderful evening!

Thanks for stopping by!
Mike