Cycling Japan – day 48 – Lake Towada to Aomori

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  • Day 48 – Lake Towada to Aomori
  • Distance: 79.5km
  • Ascent / descent: 939m / 1301m
  • Weather: too hot!
  • Accommodation: APA Hotel, Aomori, ¥4000

I was awake at 3:30am with the birds (and it’s also light at this time, sunrise is at 4:08!) and finally got up about 4:30am. One of my neighbours was also packing up and he came over and offered me coffee which was much needed, thanks! We chatted over the coffee, how beautiful the area was, how annoyingly early the birds start these days etc 😉  and then I was on my way at 5:30am.

Riding around Lake Towada on Route 454 in the early morning

Taken at 05:47, riding around Lake Towada on Route 454

Lake Towada

Lake Towada

Who knew the grave of Christ was here in Aomori Prefecture?

Who knew the grave of Christ was here in Aomori Prefecture?

Not too far from where I had camped there’s a small picturesque town called Towadako. There’s a few hotels, a youth hostel and shops, but it was too early for anything to be open. It was very peaceful and I stopped by the lakeside to enjoy the scenery (and wifi!) for a while.

I took Route 102 to leave the lake and just happened upon my favourite road of the trip so far. This road follows the Oirase Gorge which I had knowledge of until today, but it is spectacular! It was dotted with waterfalls, rock formations and a hiking trail beside the river. Even at 7:30am it was already busy with hikers and photographers. I just couldn’t resist and had to continually stop to take photos. I LOVED IT!

Route 102 leading away from Lake Towada along the Oirase Gorge

Route 102 leading away from Lake Towada along the Oirase Gorge

Oirase Stream (Route 102)

Oirase Stream (Route 102)

The Oirase Gorge (Route 102) is dotted with numerous stunning waterfalls

The Oirase Gorge (Route 102) is dotted with numerous stunning waterfalls

Choshi Otaki (Choshi big falls), Oirase Gorge

Choshi Otaki (Choshi big falls), Oirase Gorge

Choshi Otaki (Choshi big falls), Oirase Gorge

Choshi Otaki (Choshi big falls), Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Kumoi Falls, Oirase Gorge

Apple pie and coffee for breakfast at the Oirase Keiryukan Hall

Apple pie and coffee for breakfast at the Oirase Keiryukan Hall

Shiba-inu

Shiba-inu

The temperature was soaring again and I was also climbing / pushing the bike again. It was another day in the mid 30s. I filled up my water bottles at every opportunity and even had to take my shirt off at one point and soak it in cold water in a bathroom sink before putting it back on to try and cool down.

I'm climbing up again and there's more snow - I'd really like to roll around in it because today is soooo hot!

I’m climbing up again and there’s more snow – I’d really like to roll around in it because today is soooo hot!

I stopped at this roadside restaurant to get out of the sun and have lunch

I stopped at this roadside restaurant to get out of the sun and have lunch

Snowy mountain and plateau views

Snowy mountain and plateau views

The final descent to Aomori was so steep and long that my hands hurt from holding the brakes for so long! I checked into a hotel out of a desperate need to wash my salt-ridden clothes and get a decent sleep without the birds and daylight waking me at 3am! I was too tired to do anything other than washing and dinner at a nearby Italian restaurant. The waitress questioned me when I ordered the large pizza, worried I wouldn’t be able to eat it all. When it arrived, I had to stop myself from immediately ordering another one; it might’ve been large for Japan sizes, but not for my appetite!

Pizza and chilled red wine (anyone know why red wine is always chilled in Japan?) for dinner in Aomori

Pizza and chilled red wine (anyone know why red wine is always chilled in Japan?) for dinner in Aomori

My room at APA Hotel, Aomori

My room at APA Hotel, Aomori

Jb48 - elevation profile from Garmin connect

Jb48 – elevation profile from Garmin connect

Jb48 - google map from Garmin Connect

Jb48 – google map from Garmin Connect

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