We managed to walk through the very steep "Zange" slope, and stopped at the rope-way station a little while. Around the rope-way station is usually crowded with tourists, but there seems to be fewer people than before. Probably because the bad weather though...
Old lady's statue
There used to be a shed called Wasagoya, and a woman named Wasa was a guard at this shed. I think this statue was built to worship this lady. She puts a frightening look on her face, but I think she's trying to warn hikers to be careful.
Okama (volcanic lake)
We went straight to Kumano bunki (bifurcation), and headed to Mt.Kumano first. Since it was our first hiking in Zao this year, we thought we should go and pray at Kumano shrine. Then, we went down to Okama (volcanic lake). Okama was beautiful as ever.
Komakusa （Dicentra peregrina）
We tried to find Komakusa very hard, but there were very few. I think the season is almost finished, but we were lucky enough to see these last piece of beauty.
Temperature in a shed near Mt.Kumano
It was almost freezing thanks to the very strong wind, and we evacuated to the shed to have lunch. The room temperature was 7 degree! Hmm, the hiking season is gradually coming to end.
It's our first hiking in Zao in this year, and probably the last.... I wish I could have gone more!
Here's detailed information about volcanic warnings.
The route we took is here↓