The Beauty of Road Trips, Part 2: Fuji Times Five

As a follow up to my last post, I wanted to put up the rest of the pictures from my one-week Golden Week vacation. From May 3rd-5th Kanako and I drove out to see Mt. Fuji – climbing will wait until it’s warmer, probably early July! Still, Mt. Fuji is definitely worth seeing up close. This was my second trip (I took one with Steve last year in March), and as always I was reminded why the Japanese believe that dieties (Shinto) reside inside natural formations like mountains and rivers.

If you’ve never seen Mt. Fuji up close, it’s pretty staggering. It’s not a particularly tall mountain when compared with the world’s tallest, but its beauty lies in its almost perfect symmetry, no matter what angle you view it from. There are times when you round a bend or it is hidden by a small hill and then…BAM it comes slamming into your view, dominating the horizon. This year it was still very snow-capped, even for early May. A nice touch in the photos.

I didn’t take any photos on the first day as we spent most of the day driving out to Fuji, and stuck in traffic along the way. The second day I only took 9 pictures altogether (!) but the five I do have of Fuji form a good variety of angles and colors, themes and compositions. We went to a number of different spots from all angles (except south), including Motosuko, Kawaguchiko, Yamanako, and the Shibazakura Matsuri Park by Motosuko (it may have acutally been in Yamanashi prefecture, the border is close to that area). Here are my “Five from Fuji”:

B&W Sunrise
Sunrise at Fumotoppara (ふもとっぱら, “plain at the foot of the mt”). Lots of families out for camping trips

Shibazakura and Fuji
Taken at the Shibazakura (芝桜、”Cherry Blossom Grass”) park in Shizuoka. So called because the petals resemble sakura petals. Comes in a nice variety of colors!

Flying in the wind
Taken on the road to the Shibazakura park, at a spot where you could see Fuji fronted by poles and poles of Koi-Nobori (鯉のぼり、Carp flags for Chilrden’s Day). The slight breeze made for a nice photo, though I wish I’d had a longer lens!

Sunset on the lake
Ah yes, the glamour shot of the trip 🙂 Sunset on Lake Yamanako (山名湖). Having the sun not in the picture actually made the colors stand out more and probably saved me from flaring. Sometimes you have to take what you’re given and work with it!

Lights come on
And the same shot but about 20 minutes later. The lights had come on in the buildings across the lake, and a long exposure helped to create some movement in the water.


The rest of the pics that I took on the second and third day.

From the Shibazakura park on Day 2:

ShibazakuraShibazakura 2Fuji in the background

Day 3

On the third day we stopped for lunch with Kanako’s friend Hiromi (and her adorable baby Miki) in Hamamatsu and hit up the Hamamatsu bontanical garden in the afternoon. Took some pics at a festival going on before lunch.

Eco CoffeeColorful goodsYum...?Mochi-Maki
Clockwise from left: Fair trade coffee, colorful items for sale, mochi-maki, kaki-gori (かき氷、shaved ice)

Mochi-Maki 2
Another shot of mochi-maki (餅まき、mochi tossing). It’s like a mosh pit out there – serious stuff!

At lunch (Indian restaurant):

Miki the nan monster

Miki eating nan.

Mother and daughter 1

Mom and daughter

Tickle my foot and...

Group shot at the apartment

Miki and Nyanpaia 2

Miki with “Nyanpaia” (ニャンパイア)

That’s it! Next posts will be coming as I’ve been planting rice and climbing mountains in the last week, but for now, hope you enjoyed all the pictures and stories!


2 thoughts on “The Beauty of Road Trips, Part 2: Fuji Times Five

  1. Nice post!
    I ran into a couple of fellow Canon shooters on the hike yesterday, one of which was sporting a 7D with the 10-22 – I took a group photo for him, and the 7D definitely feels nice and solid in the hands. I know I held yours when you were over, but I’d forgotten how well-balanced it is!

    Btw, just to make your decision even more difficult, the 10-22 looks AWESOME through the 7D viewfinder… so freaking wide.

    • Dude I know. That’s why I want it so bad 😀 Choices choices…Though I’ll probably be sticking with my 20-35 for a while; can always spend the money in areas more in need of service. I don’t even take landscapes with my 7D anyway! What a crazy thing to say hahaha.

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