As homework for my Topology of Japan class, Nicky and I climbed the famous mountain in Kyoto that hosts the giant fire “大” every year.
On Wednesday, during a lull between my general classes and my Business class, Nicky and I made our way in the direction of the Silver Pavilion in Kyoto to climb Daimonjiyama, a mountain to the far east of Kyoto that hosts one of the five kanji characters that are set on fire during O-Bon, the Japanese equivalent of Mexico’s Day of the Dead. The kanji, when lit up, can be seen from miles away, and are meant to usher in the souls of those that have not yet found their way to the other side.
We missed the O-Bon activities this year, seeing as we were in Tokyo at the time, but we should be able to see them next year. It is unfortunate, but the mountain is still beautiful even when the festival isn’t going on. It reminded me a lot of Mt. Tamalpias, and Muir Woods, because of the sheer amount of stairs you have to climb to gain elevation. It was a fun hike though, as every time we ran across someone else, everyone exchanged words of encouragement.
Eventually, Nicky and I got to the top, though, to be fair, we were far more interested in the tiny bug life we had been discovering on the way than the view. This is partly due to the fact that the view was obscured a lot by haze and clouds, but my camera managed to cut out a lot of the haze, so we can see the view better from the photos than we could at the time, strangely. You can view all the photos in my gallery.
After making our way back down, we strolled around the market leading up to the Silver Pavilion (we didn’t have the time actually visit the temple this time around since I had class and by this point our legs were literally shaking uncontrollably from the climb back down) and got ourselves a potato tornado and some ice cream.
All in all, a really great day~ I want to climb the other four mountains now!