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Mount Fuji climbing season opens

21 Comments

The Mount Fuji climbing season opened on Sunday morning on the Yamanashi side.

About 150 climbers were at the summit to view the sunrise at 4:28 a.m., Fuji TV reported. The Shizuoka side will open to climbers on July 10.

Huge numbers of climbers are expected in July and August. Last year, more than 220,000 people climbed the 3,776-meter mountain, according to Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectural government officials.

As they did last year, the prefectural governments are asking climbers to pay a fee of 1,000 yen on a voluntary basis. The money will be used to help preserve the area's natural beauty.

Hordes of trekkers have flocked to Mount Fuji since it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2013 in recognition of its status as a symbol of Japan. Local officials have been struggling to improve traffic access and other facilities with the big increase in visitors.

The climbing season will end on Sept 10.

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21 Comments
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In a usual year, I wouldn't recommend climbing it until August as it is usually still very cold at the top, but with this year's hot weather, I imagine it would be much like it is in August when you can sometimes walk around the summit crater in a T-shirt. In contrast, when I climbed on July 1 a few years ago, it was so cold that when I reached the top, I took a quick a peek and got the heck off the summit. Burrr, even with good climbing wear. Earlier we had passed someone wearing basketball shorts with a space blanket wrapped around his shoulders. Nuts!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I climbed it 3 and a half times over the years. Twice in the same year. 2 times alone and on the subashira trail at night. It is quite a spiritual thing to do alone and at night. Yeah...very foolish but I do have experience.

I did it the other times on the Gotemba trail (the toughest they say) Once having to turn back because of one in the group feeling ill.

Personally, I wouldn't climb during the day. Seems like torture, not fun.

At night for much of the time I was just wearing my t-shirt. Towards the top got colder and I kitted up.

If you are thinking of doing it (alone) I have two bits of advice for you.

Take your time! You don't want to fall over and injure yourself. This could be a life threatening situation. Nice and slow...baby steps...and take a small break just to catch your breath every 30 meters or so. (Trust me, you will anyway:)

Don't try t skimp on the weight. Water, and plenty of it!! Warm kit...I took a full sleeping system to the top. It was lovely and warm.

Oh...one last thing. It's great alone to sit back and enjoy the stars in complete silence.

Like I said...spiritual.

But once to start moving it's good to have a little quiet music or indeed and audio book coming from a small speaker on your pack.

Don't wear headphones!

Good luck and stay safe folks. Remember...that girl is only sleeping. She may wake up one day.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

To each his own, but I am not sure I would bring speakers as it ruins it for others around who don't wish to listen to anything. ;)

The first time I climbed it, I went with a slow, but normal speed group and we "rested" in a hut for a few hours. Anyway, it took us a total of 9 hours just to climb to the top and we arrived a half hour before the sunrise. Perfect timing.

The second time, on opening day, I went with a friend who had to catch the bullet train to Osaka, so time was slim. We went up and down in that same 9 hours. I don't seem to be affected by altitude, but others are often huddled in misery along the route.

Speaking of things to bring--a whole wad of 100 yen coins as the toilets cost 200-300 yen to use. You do the math for a 15 hour ordeal or 9 if you are fast.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

To each his own, but I am not sure I would bring speakers as it ruins it for others around who don't wish to listen to anything. ;)

haha...I don't know when you climbed (not Subashira or Gotemba was it?) but I never saw another soul until the trails merged near the top. By then the "spiritual" aspect disappears when you meet the large groups of "gortex tourists"

And...it ain't a 1980s beat box attached to my pack. It's a small speaker on a very low volume.

You rested in a hut? Pfft!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The time I used the hut, I was with a group of 7 people and I didn't organize the climb. When you climb with a group, you go the speed of the slowest person out of courtesy and safety. Because we climbed so slow, I actually needed the rest because the slower you go the more hours you are climbing and it is just as tiring as picking up the pace like I did the second time and didn't 'rest' in a hut and did the up and down in a total of 9 (5 up and 4 down). The hut was quite an experience though. It was fun talking to people from around the world as we ate our curry, provided by the hut.

The slow time I climbed Subashira and did see enough people to warrant earphones ;) Gotemba was desolate. Not a soul and I don't recommend it. Endless. The fast time I did Yoshida, but on the first day of climbing season. Not many people, but still not as desolate as Gotemba. I Know Yoshida is usually packed. Subashira is a great way to go, but I like the rock scrambling on Yoshida.

I'd MUCH rather see the 'Goretex tourists' than the 'right off the streets of 'Shibuya' folks wearing stylish going out on the town jackets and light sneakers that I saw plenty of. What are those folks thinking?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

 I climbed Subashira and did see enough people to warrant earphones ;)

Folks...don't wear earphones. The pressure caused by the altitude has an effect on your hearing and you could damage your ears.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The 'right off the streets of 'Shibuya' folks wearing stylish going out on the town jackets and light sneakers that I saw plenty of. What are those folks thinking?

You got that right. saw a group of Koreans and the girls were wearing heels.

They turned back well pretty soon after starting.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Haha. One of the 'shibuya' fashioned 'climbers' was well above where Subashiri and Yoshida merge when I passed him. Stylishly cut beige leather jacket, tight, tight jeans and thin soled canvas loafers(yes, him). Another gentleman was wearing a plaid dress shirt and penny loafers with the penny still in.

I think you might be right about the earbuds that seal in the ear, but I don't think something like Apple AirPods would do any damage. Anyway, you are probably right the Subashiri is lacking in people. I enjoy hearing the scuff of boots and the breeze in my ears. Ha.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My parents plan to go Mount Fuji with me next year. I think that it is difficult for me to climb Mount Fuji because I have no motivation, but I heard that sunrise in the top of Mount Fuji is very beautiful so I want to see it. Mount Fuji was registered a UNESCO World Heritage site, but Mount Fuji is located in Yamanashi prefecture and Shizuoka prefecture. I wonder Mount Fuji belongs which prefecture Yamanashi or Shizuoka. In 2020, Olympic will be held in Japan. A lot of tourists will come to Japan, so I want a lot of foreign people to climb Mount Fuji.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I'll be doing it again this year hooktrunk2. You'll know it's me...I'll have the boombox on max! ;)

If you're doing it bud. Stay safe.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

as we ate our curry

Gross!

I'm not going.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I climbed it many years ago. We were four, 3gaijins one Japanese. On the way up, one was stuggling to keep up and ask us to go ahead and meet him on designated stops or stages. I bought the wooden walking stick and have it "stamped" each stage. Before we reached the 7th station where we had reservation for the "hut" to rest, another companion was feeling the altitude sickness. So we arrived around 9PM at the hut, ate the curry and lie down back to back with total strangers. Around 1AM everybody was up and about preparing to summit, timing it so we reach the top before the sunrise. My two companions didnt want to continue and wanted to stay at the hut and my Japanese companion begged me to go with him to the top, he said it might be his only chance and even told me that all Japanese must climb Mt. Fuji at least once in their lifetime, he is 30years my senior so I did continue with him. I am just a casual climber, I wasnt even on proper gear, just jeans, rubber shoes and sports jacket. It was freezing cold but the view of the sunrise from the top was indeed one of the most beautiful I've seen.

Advise to those casual climbers who wants to try it, bring a climbing stick, big help specially going down. Your knees will thank you for it, plus a good souvenir if you have the wooden stick and have it stamped for each stages for a fee of 200yen each(",)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Although I used to climb mountains (but never Fuji), an injury in a non-related accident left effects that I think could possibly result in my situation causing danger to others. So I refrain and only look on with nostalgia and envy. Hope all who attempt the climb do so with proper planning and come home safely.

Several times I’ve watched interesting TV programs featuring the commendable doctors and others who do duty at the medical hut on Fuji. They certainly have to deal with a lot of situations, many of which could have been avoided by proper planning/clothing.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think watching the sunset from mt Fuji is more comfortable from the window of a LCC morning flight. Truely spectacular!

Never climbed, but I assume patrons take about 6 pet bottles, so that is about one million plastic bottles. What happens to them?

my friend and his brother climbed it 2 years ago in shorts and tshirts. Two grown men had to cuddle up in plastic rubbish bags, arms wrapped around each other. Be safe if you wanna climb.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I can see Mount Fuji from my grandmother's house. It's very beautiful and powerful. If you get a oppotunitie of coming to Japan, I recommend that see it once.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm happy to hear that but there is the problem of garbage that is threw out by climbers. I want them to be careful about that for keeping Mount Fuji beautiful.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Totally overrated climb....better to head to Nepal for the Annapurna circuit or even Kita-dake in Japan. If it is allowed, better to climb it just before or after the official season to avoid the hordes.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Meh.  Looks much better from a distance.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I hope to do it this year!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm happy to hear that because it's beautiful and many people will be able to see it but there is the problem of garbage that is threw out by climbers. I want them to be careful about that for keeping mount Fuji being beautiful. When I climbed this mountain, it was clean because many volunteers cleaned and picked up garbage. I hope their work will decrease in the future.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My parents plan to go Mount Fuji with me next year. I think that it is difficult for me to climb Mount Fuji because I have no motivation. However, I heard that sunrise at the top of Mount Fuji is very beautiful so I want to see it. In 2020, The Olympic will be held in Japan. A lot of tourists will come to Japan, so I want a lot of foreign people to climb Mount Fuji.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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