Mt. Musa (1005m) hike, which gives you a quiet, peaceful time while walking in the forest in Nakashibetsu town, Hokkaido. You can see magnificent views of Mt.Shari (one of the 100 best mountains in Japan), a vast expanse of Konsen plain, a distant view of Odaito sandbar from its peak and you can enjoy listening to many birds chirping if the weather is permitted.
At your hotel in Abashiri or Nakashibetsu.
Mt.Musa hike, which is 2.5hours up and 1.5 hours down. You can enjoy walking on the trail well-maintained.
Kaiyodai Observation Deck located near the Mt. Musa, which gives you 360°panoramice views of the Konsen plain
Yoroushi Onsen hot spring, which is 30-minute drive from Mt. Musa, gives you relaxing time.
Uramashu Observation Deck, where you can see incredibly beautiful color of Lake Mashu, which is called Mashu Blue, mysterious blue color of its water
At your hotel in Abashiri or Nakashibetsu.
Mt. Musa is located in the small twon named Nakashibetsu. It is not a high mountain but offers us a peaceful, quiet atomosphere while we are walking on the trail in the forest in the mountain. If you start your hike early in the morning( around 8 a.m.) and return to the hike start point (around 2 p.m.), you have some options such as stopping by at the Kaiyo Dai Observation Deck to be able to see a vast expanse of Konsen Field and Yoroushi Onsen hot spring, which is famous for its open air baths. You can see Lake Mashu, which has the second clearest water in the world and famouts for its mysterious blue color called "Mashu Blue" on the way back to Abashiri.
guide fee, hotel pick-up in Abashiri area
transportaion fee (you and guide), renting a car (about 7,000 ~ 8,000JPY a day) or taking a taxi from Abashiri (about 45,000JPY for the both way), lunch, dinner, onsen or hot spring bath charge (about 600JPY per person), hike food and drinks etc
The hike will be canceled due to the bad weather. You must carry food, water, warm clothes, extra underwear, gloves, cap, rain wear in case of sudden rainfall. Hike boots are recommended if you have ones ( it is possible that you slip and fall down when you walk on the wet, muddy tail ). We can't expect nice views of Konsen Field from the Kaiyo Dai Observation Deck and Lake Mashu on cloudy days. We must get to Yoroushi Onsen hot spring by 3 p.m to take an onsen bath and leave there by 4 p.m. If you want to spend more time on hot spring bath, there are some other onsen or hot springs to visit on the way to Abashiri. If the hike is canceled, there are other options such as visiting "Kaminoko Ike" or God's Child Pond, "Sakurano Taki Waterfall", the spot to see salmon going upstream in summer etc. There aren't any public transportation services, so you must rent a car (about 7,000 ~ 8,000JPY a day) or take a taxi (about 45,000JPY for both way from Abashiri).This tour is designed to start from Abashiri, where I live, but I think I can pick you up at Nakashibetsu town. In this case, you must stay at Nakashibetu the day before the hike to start the tour early and pay for my picking up fees ( 4-hour drive for both ways) and gas in total (about 5000JPY). All of the tourist spots above are on the way back to Abashiri, so I strongly recommend we start our hike tour from Abashiri. Plus, please avoid the policy to limit a driver when you rent a car. I can drive it instead of you in case you don't want to on the narrow mountain roads. In this case, I must give my photo copy of my driver's license to the rent-a-car agent when you rent it.
Our group from Seattle Washington spent two days with Hiroshi in Eastern Hokkaido - one day touring the Abashiri area and the second hiking in Lake Akan. We had a great experience with him and highly recommend him. In planning the trip, Hiroshi was a pleasure to work with. We were interested in hiking and seeing some of the natural wonders of Eastern Hokkaido. He answered all our e-mails promptly with excellent ideas and information, and was very flexible in developing a trip that met the needs of our schedule and group interests. On our arrival to Japan, Hiroshi went out of his way to make two trips to the airport as some of our group was delayed. Upon meeting him, we bonded quickly. His written and spoken English is excellent - not surprising as he is a former English teacher. He is a charming, funny and delightful individual, a Hokkaido native full of local knowledge and lots of energy. He had prepared extensively for our trip, coming with maps, brochures, and a wide range of specific ideas. He drove us for two days in a rental car, including in some challenging weather conditions. He is an experienced and cautious driver who made us feel very comfortable. On our hike to Meakandake at Lake Akan, he arrived fully prepared with extra gear, maps, even fresh home made bread and hot coffee for the trail! He was very careful to track our progress and mindful of how the group was doing at all times as the weather and conditions changed during the hike. Even after our tour with him and during the rest of our time in Hokkaido, he stayed in touch frequently, providing additional ideas as to where to go, including many excellent spots that were not found in local guides. Overall, our experience with Hiroshi was great and I would recommend him without reservation.
Hi Sandy Thank you so much for your message. I had a GREAT time spending two days with you, too. It was also a hppy and pleasure time for me. Unfortunately, we didn't have the best weatherfor the hike at Mt.Meakan but as I told you during our hike, that was a kind of the notice that we should hike again. So I'd like you all to come again to Mt. Meakandake to enjoy its spectacular views in the near future !! I was really glad to know you had a good luck to be able to see beautiful views of Lake Mashu, a small pond called 'Kaminoko-ike',or God's Child Pond in English and rare birds including cranes during the rest of your tour. Please let me know anytime when you need some information about eaastern Hokkaido. I'm looking forward to hearing from you !! Thanks again for your kind words and say hi to David and Cezanne for me. Hiroshi
Hiroshi is an excellent and knowledgeable guide around the Abashiri area. He’s very communicative and worked with me to research and schedule a tour to fit my interests so don’t feel limited by the tour description on Triplelights. He was a gracious host. We ate the best oysters I have ever tasted near Lake Saroma. His English is very good, both written and spoken
Thank you for your kind comments, Craig. I'm happy to know you really enjoyed your stay in Abashiri. December is not the best time to visit Abashiri, but we did have a great time visiting scenic spots, water birds observation and drift ice museum. Especially, having delicious oysters WAS a high-light for me, too. Please come and visit Abashiri again and have more memorable experiences with me. Thanks again for visiting Abashiri. Hiroshi.