Yufu-Dake in Oita, Japan

Yufu dake, aka  Bungo-fuji or Hakufu-dake is in the prefecture of Oita, Japan, in the north-eastern part of Kyushu, the southern main island of Japan.  The closest stop on the JR line is in Yufuin.  Take a bus or taxi from there.

The approach give you a good long look at the mountain’s twin peaks.  The false summit is on the right, the true summit on the left (as you approach).  Walk about a km or so across an open area before beginning to climb, gradually at first, through the humid forest.

After about 30 min or so, the trail opens into grassy switchbacks, but resist the urge to cut across.  Once in the crotch of the peaks, you can choose which peak to climb.  We took the true summit, and were ninja-ing our way up on chains which had been bolted to the side of the rock.   This part is not for the faint of heart.

The summit appears quickly once you reach the chains, and the top has incredible views of Yufuin and almost all the way to Beppu.  Our packs were primarily full of beer, and the Japanese people we met at the top, in their northface gear and gas stoves, were shocked that all we brought was a few beers.  By our standards, the climb was not too difficult, and we didn’t need anything that we didn’t bring.

One word of caution… it’s a long walk back into town if you miss the last bus.  trust us, we know.  and 2 sweaty, slightly drunk white guys are extremely unlikely to be picked up as hitchhikers.

There are tons of sweet, day peaks all around Japan.  This one was very close to our house, so we climbed it a few times.  Ask around for local peaks where-ever you might be.

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