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Posts tagged Mt. Takao

Twelve years ago today…

mt takao seven lucky gods topaz denoise ai-clear

七福神

Your day just got a little more lucky after viewing the Seven Lucky Gods of Mt. Takao. If those don’t work for you then we also have some jizo and other random gods to meet all of your needs.

Mt. Takao jizo

高尾山 地蔵 mt takao jizo topaz

高尾山の地蔵 (January 2010)

Two different Tengus

mt takao tengu kappa

Karasu Tengu and Yamabushi Tengu (天狗)

Today’s photo is from Mt. Takao, not far from Tokyo and was taken 11 years ago yesterday.

Religious rites on a holy mountain side

mount takao mt. priest chanting next to waterfall

As we came down the trail (one of many and I have no idea which one) on Mt. Takao we found ourselves alone with a priest and a waterfall.

Inari Shrine at Yakuoin Temple on Mt. Takao

kitsune yakuoin takaosan yukuji

The grounds for this Inari Shrine are part of the Buddhist temple on Mount Takao formally known as Takao-san Yakuo-in Yuki-ji, and most commonly known as just Takaosan Yakuoin (高尾山薬王院). This place was supposedly established in 744 on the orders of Emperor Shomu as a base for Buddhism in eastern Japan. I have no way of knowing how long these torii and structures have been around, but I think it is safe to say that they are much more recent creations. This shrine has more Shinto characteristics than Buddhist ones.

Momijiya (もみじや) on Mt. Takao

mount takao tokyo mountain climbing hiking

Momijiya shop on Mt. Takao

One thing about Japan that is very different from anywhere else in the world I’ve hiked is that you frequently don’t have to be very careful with your provisioning. That said, the Japanese themselves usually go way overboard on their own provisioning while hiking. It isn’t uncommon to see someone out for a day hike of a few hours with enough in their backpack to last them for a week.

For instance, if you were to climb Mt. Takao (高尾山), Mt. Mitake, or even Mt. Fuji (all fairly close to Tokyo) you will find shops along the hiking route (and at the top!) selling various food stuffs, water, souvenirs, etc. On your way down a different route it’s the same thing. I guess that isn’t too surprising given how convenient everything is in Japan’s cities. You can’t walk more than about 50 steps in most of Tokyo without passing at least one convenience store.

Today’s photo is of one such shop I encountered on my way down Mt. Takao. Momiji means Japanese Maple so I’m guessing this place looks great right about now and for the past couple weeks with the fall foliage. This photo was taken in January though. January is a great time to hike up Mt. Takao as the crowds aren’t so bad and the odds of a great view of Mt. Fuji from the top are much better in winter.

Some items I can see in this picture that you could possible consume are oden, dango, and nikuman. Maybe you aren’t hungry, but you want something to drink? Well, there are at least three vending machines in the far left of this image loaded with Pocari Sweat (ポカリスエット) along with other beverages. How many mountains in the USA (or anywhere else in the world outside of Japan) do you know of that have vending machines on or near the top?