My latest Post.

This view,this beauty
A tear unbidden
Creeps into my eye.

My stay is short
But I shall return to this place
If only my life is long enough.

Such beauty
Gazing upon it
I hope my years are many.

Bokusui Wakayama.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Ushiozanhougon Temple and Beyond - an introduction.


   Ushiozanhougon Temple (map location) is nestled within a basin surrounded by hills that borders the prefectures of Kyoto and Shiga, and is going to be the focal-point of my time hiking and discovering what lies within these hills.

Stairway to
   I have no information regarding the temple and it's grounds, just to say it is located at the junction of many hiking tracks and, judging by the amount of hikers and devotees in the area, it is a very popular destination.

   I would say the temple has seen better days but, aside from that, it was still a very beautiful place to experience. On the day I took these images I arrived by mountain-bike and, as it was cold, I didn't want to hang-around too long: I still had a 33km ride to get home, but, whenever I pass through here, I am sure I will have more images to add.

   As can be seen in this map, there is quite a network of tracks in the area. One particular track is a segment of the 'Tokaido Road'. I estimate my time in here will require three, maybe four, visits and, each segment I do, I plan to pass by Ushiozanhougon.
   Included within the area are four mountains I plan to ascend  - (Mt) Otowayama 593m, (Mt) Gyojagamori 440m, (Mt) Takatsukayama 485m and (Mt) Daigoyama 454m.
   Also, I am sure I will discover other shrines and temples, like Shimo-Daigo (Lower Daigo-ji) and Kami-Daigo (Upper Daigo-ji) and Shiraishi-jinja Shrine. And lets not forget the religious icons that, I am sure, will be dotted-within the territory.

   Of the two occasions I have been here, I get the impression the tracks are well signposted. In the image on the top left, this noticeboard, located at the base of the pilgrimage path to Ushiozanhougon, shows the tracks in the area. On the bottom left, is a sign giving directions for the Tokaido Road path - these are very distinctive signs and, wherever you come-across them, they are all the same. The image on the bottom right, are signs placed throughout by the 'Yamashina Hiking Club', they are located at the junctions and give excellent information as to there to go from that point but, a warning, they are very small and easily missed.

   So, without further ado, lets go hiking.


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