Thursday July 31st
A much needed rest day at Goryu koya as well as the planned rendezvous point to meet my good friend from Virginia Beach, Chris. He will continue on with me for the next 8 days when we should arrive at Komikochi. It’s going to be great traveling with a companion and since Kristian dropped out before the trip started it will have more meaning, as I’ve been brooding over the lack of North American companionship. Recapping what I’ve been able to accomplish up until this point:
- More days spent continuously in the mountains than ever before (6 straight days).
- Have climbed 12 total mountains
- Travelled about 51 kilometers (30 miles)
- Hiked in 3 different prefectures of Japan (Niigata, Tateyama, Nagano)
It’s Nagano that I’ll be spending a lot of my time in the coming month. This rest day is much needed and not just for my aching body but also to reinvigorate my mind. had the best nights sleep last night in a very long time. Today I feel very refreshed and a piece of me wants to hit the trail while another part is tugging me to spend a few more nights here. The clouds have start to creeping then push back and it’s clear again. Rain is not in the forecast. Occasionally I can glimpse Tateyama (Holy Japanese mountain) and the other side of the Kurobe Valley from the hut. It’s almost August and it is amazing to me that as I gaze across the horizon that snow is still tucked away in the gullies and cracks of the mountains beyond. The Japanese at this hut are very friendly and I’ve felt nothing but pleasant vibes from not only the staff but from fellow hikers as well. Met not only the group from Osaka yesterday, but shared some snacks with another group from Tokyo last night, as well as befriending a couple from Kyoto who left earlier today. I’m looking forward to seeing Chris and to have the ability to speak my native tongue again! For most of the afternoon I sat and read my book by James Clavell, Shogun or just slept. Occasionally the group of junior high school students from Yokohama would come over and talk and silly stuff that junior high girls from Yokohama would say. After a long and worrisome wait Chris finally arrived at the hut a little after 8:15 pm. We shared a luke warm beer and played some cards. Great to see my friend again!