When I left vacation planning to the good husband this year, I should have prepared myself for quite a bit of action. We’ve hiked up three mountains so far on this trip to Japan, and my back and knees are threatening to give up on me.
Still, the husband had one more surprise for me which he revealed yesterday.
And the surprise was a hunt for the abandoned JR Fukuchiyama railway track.
The adventure began at Namaze Station. Following the directions of the excited husband, we walked along a busy stretch of road that was frequented by large buses, lorries, container trucks and heavy vehicles. My heart leapt to my throat whenever a monster rumbled past me at high speed.
After 15 minutes or so, we crossed that crazy, busy road and came upon a expansive field with little houses and lush greenery in the distance.
Closing in on that field, we took a little path on the left of that field and that soon brought us to an old signboard that warned of danger ahead. Yep. We were on the right track.
Ignoring the sign, we went forth and crossed an old but sturdy bridge.The vista that greeted us from there on was one of the most brilliant I’ve seen on this trip. Running along the Mukogawa river valley, the abandoned track is now loved by locals who appreciate the serene and scenic environment.
If you are a worry wart like I am, rest assured that this abandoned track is truly safe to explore. Along the way we met small groups of elderly folks and the occasional dog walker. Just remember to put on proper hiking shoes, as the ground is littered with rocks, stones and tree branches, and bring along a strong flashlight to help you conquer the six unlit train tunnels on that route.
We covered the full length of the abandoned track in three hours, with several stops for photos.
I shall let the photos do the talking from here on. :)