Continuing on from yesterday's post...we are climbing up Arahata Fujizuka, a man-made miniature replica of Mt. Fuji in Tokorozawa.
Arahata Fujizuka was created during the Meiji Era by the community of people living in Arahata as a way to come together as one. This 10-meter (approx. 33 feet) fujizuka was completed in 1899 and opened with a festival on July 1st, which is still currently the day that Mt. Fuji opens its climbing season.
On June 27, 1969, Arahata Fujizuka became Tokorozawa city's designated cultural asset. It is still a popular place for people who live near the area or people like me, who are just curious to see this historical place.
We left off at the fifth station yesterday.
If you've ever toured Mt. Fuji, you'll know that you can take a bus or drive your car up to the fifth station. I've done this a couple of times and enjoyed the view from the fifth station. And as I said yesterday, you can start your climb from the first station, but most climbers tend to start their journey to the top of Mt. Fuji from here. I think it takes about 5-7 hours depending on how fast you are. But because this is a fujizuka, it doesn't even take 5-7 minutes to get to the top. Thank goodness!
So on with the journey...the photo above is the sixth station marker "Roku-go-me (六合目)."
The path is really narrow with only space for one person. But this fujizuka has steps that are clear of weeds and still very sturdy. This may be due to the Arahata Fuji Preservation Society, who come to repair or clean and patrol the area often.
Next, the seventh station marker "Nana-go-me (七合目)."
Closing in to the top, the eighth station marker "Hachi-go-me (八合目)."
Almost to the top, the ninth station marker "Kyu-go-me (九合目)."
And here we are at the top. There is a small Asama Shrine and a 360 view of the surrounding area. I couldn't get the whole view, but you can see a panorama view below.
It was a bit cloudy when I took this photo. But when the sky is clear you can actually see Mt. Fuji from here, as most fujizuka's were made in places with a view of what the Asama Fuji religion considered sacred.
Arahata Fujizuka almost lost this view in 1923 when the Great Kanto Earthquake hit, and the section above the eighth station collapsed. But just as it was made, the community got together again to rebuild.
I really like how this Arahata Fujizuka is not only treasured because of its historic importance but also because of the community that surrounds it. I think I'll go again in the winter when the sky is more likely to be clear and maybe get to see Mt. Fuji like the people used to in the old days!
Thank you to everyone who took the time to read all this! And an even bigger thank you to all who commented! I had a lot of fun writing about fujizuka's and learned a lot, too!
I hope you'll take a look at more beautiful skies all around the world here.
And also go see the view from the real Mt. Fuji in Toshi's blog here!