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January, 20 th 2019
Since last week’s hikes were quiet challenging I decided to choose an easier one for this Sunday which is not that long and less climbing. Lee told me about an abandoned village in the mountains Ikoma and that he always wanted to go there. Mt. Ikoma was always in my mind and with only about 600 m elevation it was fixed very quickly. In the morning it dark heavy clouds were hanging over Osaka and it was pouring rain. I was very very surprised that eight people showed up in the end even though the weather conditions were very bad. At the meeting point at Ōsaka Station I only met Lee and Mat this time, all other would join us along the way. This time it was running perfectly and we started hiking at Nukata station. The trail guided us through a kind of public park with several paths merging at the top at Mt. Ikoma. It was very chilly and the higher we climb the more the mist got thicker. I felt a little bit like back in Ruhr area, it was not steep, but went continuously up and the trail consisted of yellow and red foliage leaves, which were laying wet on the ground. It smelled and looked like autumn at home. Shortly before summit the mist got very thick and we could barely look further than 5 m. At the summit there was a charming amusement park which tookus back to the seventies. For sure it was closed and lost and with all the mist it was a very spooky and mysterious atmosphere until it was meowing and two tiny cats showed up.After ten minutes I got rid of my onigiri for lunch and we walked through the amusement park. Like the last weeks it was much colder on top than some meters below and all of us were freezing. Unfortunately it was again not possible to make an enjoyable break there. Two of us left and took the nearby cable car back home. The rest of us headed towards the lost village, called Haikyu,
for exploring it. I was extremely happy, the weather conditions couldn’t have been better for this place. The houses were built in theseventies and due to economically miscalculations the houses were abandoned ant let theirselves go. It was nice to explore this places and we had a lot of fun. This village ended up in a loop and soon we were climbing down to get back to Ishikiri station. Half way the sun came out and the mist disappeared slowly. It was much warmer and we the hike and trail itself was very enjoyable. A few hundred meters before Ishikiri station we had a spectacular view of Osaka while watching the sunset. There was Osaka, the city I life in. A metropole and I could feel kind of love. This kind of love you can feel for a city and happiness and excitement were flooding my body. At this time of my life there is no place in the world I would rather live right now. Far away I could see Harukas, the Japan’s tallest building which is directly located in my neighbourhood. My home. Osaka. These days I more and more realise that I moved to Japan. This is my life now. This is the place I belong to. My home.
After the hike Cat, me and Mat went to Tsuruhashi, Korea town, and had a delicious Korean BBQ together. I accepted that this hiking events are much different than that ones in Düsseldorf and that I failed coping it. But at the same moment I more and more enjoy these differences and the events theirselves.
Access: Ishikiri Station – Nukata Station
Distance: 11.2 km