Mt. Fuji's Hot Water_ by fjwuxn


									                REIHO FUJI                        Jan - Feb 2008                           Number 103

Mt. Fuji’s Hot Water!
     With clear skies, cold brisk air, and plenty of great views of Mt. Fuji, the winter is a perfect time to sample some of
the Fujigoko’s best Onsen (hot springs), so grab your towel and get ready for a soak in the magic waters of Mt. Fuji.

 Fujiyama Onsen                                           Ishiwari no Yu
 Location: Fujiyoshida                                    Location: Yamanakako, Hirano Village.

 Only one year old, this onsen boasts a 12 meter          A curious, circular building near the shores of Lake Yamanaka
 tall main bath house supported by large inter-           houses this hot spring. Though a bit smaller than your average
 locking wooden beams that require no nails or            hot spring facility, Ishiwari no Yu has two outdoor baths, a waterfall
 steel for structural support. Built in a style from      massage, and a sauna. Located at the start of several hiking
 the Hiida area in Nagano Prefecture called               courses including the Mt. Ishiwari (1413m) climbing trail, one can
 machia tsukri, the structure creates a warm and          enjoy the hot springs after a day of outdoor activity. Open 10:00-
 comfortable atmosphere. Including vanadium               21:00, closed on Thursdays. 700 yen for adults, 500 yen for
 rich water from Mt. Fuji, Fujiyama Onsen has             students.
 several indoor baths and an outdoor rotemburo.
 One may also enjoy a Ganbanyoku (stone                   Hotel Kaneyamaen
 sauna) or various massage courses for an extra           Location: Fujiyoshida.
 fee. Though it is one of the most elegant onsens
 in the area, the price may turn some away.               One of the only places to find a true hot spring is at the
 Entrance 2000yen. Open 10:00am to 11:00pm                Kaneyamaen Hotel located right in Fujiyoshida. 15 years ago, the
 everyday.                     hotel drilled 1500m deep below their grounds to tap a hot water
                                                          vein and has since kept its steamy bounty exclusive. For those
Beni Fuji no Yu                                           looking for a great onsen experience, it is the perfect place to
Location: Yamanakako                                      splurge. Guests at Hotel Kaneyamaen are free to use the onsen.
                                                          Lunch/bath plans are available as well. While you’re there, make
Beni Fuji no Yu is a clean and modern hot spring          sure to take a stroll through Kaneyamaen’s amazing gardens. Call
facility with three indoor baths and two rotemburo.       (0555) 22-3168. Open 09:00-22:00. Adults 3150 yen.
Great views of Mt. Fuji paint the backdrop on clear
days. Additional facilities include a steam room, a
dry sauna, a cold bath, and a waterfall shower.
Though one of the largest and most popular onsens
in the area, some say the size can make it imper-
sonal. Winter schedule: Open 06:00-21:00, closed
on Tuesdays. 700 yen for adults, 500 yen for

 Also in this Issue:

 Yamanashi Mountain
 2007 Japan
 City Page
     January - February

                                                          Colorado Springs Homestay 20th Anniversary.
                                                              Fujiyoshida and Colorado Springs will celebrate the 20th
                                                          anniversary of the Colorado Springs Homestay Program in
                                                          Colorado Springs next August. A committee of past program
                                                          participants and leaders is being assembled in Fujiyoshida for
                                                          the event, and along with next year’s homestay junior high
                                                          school students and leaders, a small group from Fujiyoshida
                                                          will travel to Colorado Springs in August to join the festivities.

                                                          Fujiyoshida and Chamonix Celebrate 30 years.
                                                                2008 is the 150th year anniversary of France-Japan
                                                          relations and also the 30th year of Sister City relations
                                                          between Fujiyoshida and Chamonix, France. For the 30th
                                                          anniversary, a formal delegation from Fujiyoshida, including
                                                          Mayor Horiuchi plans to visit Chamonix in August or October
                                                          2008. Along with the formal delegation, Fujiyoshida local Taiko
                                                          team, Fujikaendaiko, and the Fujiyoshida Choral Group will
                                                          also visit Chamonix for home-stays and performances. A
                                                          formal delegation from Chamonix is also expected in Fujiyo-
                                                          shida sometime in 2008.
      For further inquiry, contact the
        International Affairs desk

                                                           Jackson Hole Fire Festival
                                                                   Plans for the Jackson Hole Fire Festival recre-
                                                           ation are continuing with fund raising and committee
                                                           meetings in Fujiyoshida. The recreation is set to happen
                                                           next June in Jackson Hole, Wyoming under the direction
                                                           of VISTA 360°, a local NPO dedicated to connecting
                                                           mountain cultures of the world, and will include over 20
                                                           taimatsu torches, Omikoshi portable shrines, and street
                                                           vendors. Educational events to raise cultural awareness
                                                           about Japan, Mt. Fuji, and the Fire Festival will be held in
                                                           Jackson starting in January 2008. For more information

Winter Holidays Celebrated in Style
  The Fujiyoshida Winter Party 2007, was held Decem-
ber 8th at the Fujigoko Civic Center in Fujiyoshida. 60
kids from Fujiyoshida showed up to play games, sing
songs, and watch a short performance hosted by
foreigners in the area. Fun was had by all.
Continued from front page.

Yurari                                                                          Izumi no Yu
Location: Narusawa                                                              Location: Ashiwada-Mura

For Mt. Fuji views and an exotic, unique bathing experience head to Yurari,     On the north shore of Lake Saiko stands a
located behind the Narusawa Roadstation on Rt. 139. Its proximity to four       small hot-spring hideaway called Izumi no
of the Fuji Five Lakes, hiking trails, and Fujiten ski resort makes it a very   Yu. This modern facility holds two indoor
popular destination. Outside, there is a giant hot bath and three wooden        baths, a sauna, and one medium-sized
tubs, plus a gazebo that houses an herbal-scented hot tub. There is of          rotemburo built of giant stones. Although
course and indoor bath that, in season, may be filled with citrus fruit. The    views of the lake are impossible from
1200 yen admission fee includes access to all of the above, and includes        indoors, the cool breeze and fresh mountain
the free use of towels. For an additional cost, visitors can enjoy an hour of   air create a fresh ambiance not found
intimacy in a private bath (add 1500 yen), being buried in hot sand, or mas-    anywhere else. 900 yen. Open 10:00am-
sages. Open year-round from 10:00am-10:00pm.                                    9:00pm Sunday through Friday, and                                                       10:00am to 10:00pm Saturday and holidays.
                                                                                Call 0555-82-2641.

                                                                                Tensui no Yu
                                                                                Location: Kawaguchiko

                                                                                Tensui no Yu is conveniently located uphill
                                                                                from the world-class Kubota Kimono
                                                                                Museum. From its idyllic perch, the beauty
                                                                                of Mt. Fuji stands in marvelous splendor
                                                                                over the crystal lake below, and all this can
                                                                                be taken in from the relaxing atmosphere of
                                                                                the sauna. Inside there are a couple of
                                                                                pools, but the real treat are the outdoor tubs
                                                                                of varying degrees of hotness. 1000 yen.
                           Take the whole family!

Let’s Onsen!                                            Some Fujigoko Area Onsens
Tips for using a Japanese Hot Spring                    (not drawn to scale)

-Have an “Onsen kit” ready. Include a bath
towel, a wash cloth, and any toiletries. Most
onsen have soap and shampoo available at
their shower stations.                                                                         Mt. Fuji
-Most onsen have towels to buy/rent.
-MAKE SURE you clean your body thoroughly                            138
at the shower station before getting in the                                      B
bath.                                                                                                                      Lake Saiko
-Don’t stick your washcloth into the bath, or               Lake Yamanakako                                 9
submerge your head in the bath. Some                                                                                               F
people put the washcloth on their head.                                                          D
-Most onsens do not allow people with visible                                        C
tattoos inside the baths, though covering up                                                                    Lake Kawaguchiko
tattoos with bandages is permitted.                                                      139
                                                                    A.Ishiwari no Yu
Onsen      – Hot spring                                             B.Benifuji no Yu                                          G
Tennnen Onsen             – Natural hot spring                      C.Kaneyama-en
Ofuro      – Bath                                                   D.Fujiyama Onsen
Rotemburo           – Outdoor bath                                  E.Yurari                                   137
Ganbanyoku           – Korean style stone sauna                     F.Izumi no Yu
Taoru        – Small towel/washcloth
Basu taoru            – Bath towel (large)
          Top Ten List to the Rescue!
                                 by Kim Oda
                                                                                                                           Gyaru Son”
 A year of sifting through Japan’s newspaper headlines in English can leave                                                famous for eating
you drowning in information overload and no closer to having a clue of what’s                                              unbeleivablly large
                                                                                                                           amounts of food at
going on in Japan. For lack of a better method of retrieving and processing
                                                                                                                           one sitting (oogui).
information from the inscrutable Japanese culture, here’s a top ten list of catch-
phrases that made an impact on Japan in 2007. An entire year of events,
news, entertainment and trends cleverly reduced into easily digestible bite
sized pieces for those trapped in the language bubble in Japan. Bon appetit!

10. Extremely hot day [moushobi –         ]: This expression refers to days in
which the high temperatures reaches 35 degrees Celcius (95 degrees Fahren-
heit). The number of moushobi has increased significantly over the past 10
years, causing heat strokes and other health problems.

9. Giant meal [oogui (mega-___) –                    ]: Over the past year, a                 Commedian
number of mega-sized meals and high-calorie food products have appeared                       and Govenor
on the market, such as cup ramen, pudding, ice cream and hamburgers.                          of Miyazaki
Some say this trend is a reaction against the recent health food boom, while                  Prefecture,
others see it as a sign of economic recovery.                                                 Hideo Higashi-

8. Net café refugee [net cafe nanmin –                 ]: An expression used
to refer to the growing number of day laborers who spend their nights in 24-
hour internet café booths. The Café Complex Association (JCCA) opposes
the media’s use of the word “refugee” to describe these important customers.
A government survey this year estimates there are about 5,400 net café
refugees in Japan.

7. Disguised food [shokuhin gisou –            ]: A slew of scandals in the food
industry were exposed this year ranging from meat suppliers admitting their
product was made mostly of pork to long-standing traditional Japanese cake
shops shown to contain ingredients past their use-by date and lesser products
                                                                                                                               Cover of
marketed and sold at a premium as high end gourmet brands from areas                                                           Donkanryoku.
celebrated for their produce.

6. The power of insensitivity [donkanryoku –          ]: Made popular by ¬the
best-selling book of the same name written by popular novelist Junichi Wata-
nabe, this expression means something like “thick skin” and refers to the ability
to live in a relaxed manner without getting worked up over the little things.

5. Dondakee~ [                ]: This catchall exclamation of surprise/disbelief/reproach arose from the Shinjuku 2-chome gay
community and was popularized by Ikko, a popular transvestite TV personality. Dondake~ can be used in a wide variety of
situations, similar to “Really?!” or “No Way!” Usually said with slight rising intonation and seasoned with whiny sarcasm.

4. Sonna no kankei nee [                   ]: Comedian Yoshio Kojima’s catchphrase meaning “It doesn’t matter!” from his
wildly famous routine. Thanks to YouTube, Kojima’s popularity has spread quickly across the globe.

3. Pension (that disappeared) [(kieta) nenkin – (        )    ]: Pensions topped the headlines after a government blunder
resulted in the disappearance of at least 50 million public pension account records, shortchanging an unknown number of
retirees. Oops.

2. Hanikami Oji [           ]: This is the nickname which means “bashful prince” given to Ryo Ishikawa, who at age 15
became the youngest man ever to win a regular tournament on the Japanese golf tour.

1. Something needs to be done (about Miyazaki) [(Miyazaki o) do gen ka sen to ikan – (              )                       ]:
When outlining his policy to the prefectural assembly, Miyazaki governor-elect Hideo Higashikokubaru (a.k.a. Sonomanma
Higashi) peppered his speech with Miyazaki dialect, saying things like “Do genka sen to ikan” (“something needs to be done”)
in reference to the need to escape from the old ball and chain that has become the root of stagnation. Mr. Higashi, a former
comedian, won the Miyazaki governatorial election with 44% of the vote without the support of any political party. Seen as a
sign of voter disillusionment with mainstream politics, his resounding victory sent shockwaves through the Liberal Democratic
                       This list was compiled by Japanese publishing company Jiyu Kokuminsha and translated by the creators
                       of Have a look to see the other 50 buzzwords that didn’t make the top ten list.
Yamanashi Mountain Man Tackles 100 Mountains!
           On October 4, 2007, Trevor Hilsendeger, Canadian and 7 year
 resident of the Fujigoko Area, summited Mt. Houousan (2860m) and com-
 pleted the “Yamanashi Hyakumeizan”, Yamanashi’s 100 Famous Moun-
           “I am the first foreigner to complete the Yamanashi Hyakumeizan,”
 says Hilsendeger, as he shows his scrapbook of photos from his 3 year
 quest. “I’ve never heard of anyone else completing it.”
           The Yamanashi Hyakumeizan was originated by famous Japanese
 writer and mountaineer, Fukuda Kyuya, after creating the “Nihon Hyaku-
 meizan,” or Japan’s 100 most famous mountains. At that time, Fukuda
 resided in Yamanashi prefecture, which is famous for its mountains, such
 as Mt. Fuji and the Minami (southern) Alps. “Yamanashi is a great place to
 live if you like it,” responds Hilsendeger when asked about his hobby of
 mountain climbing. Yamanashi is home to 13 of Japan’s 100 famous moun-           Trevor Hilsendeger at his home in Oshino Village
 tains, and neighboring Gifu, Shizuoka, and Nagano prefectures combine
 with Yamanashi for a total of 50 of Japan’s 100 famous mountains.
           Hilsendeger first started to climb mountains on a date with his
 current wife the day after a typhoon. Together they climbed Mt. Mitsutouge,
 which towers above Fujiyoshida to the North of Mt. Fuji. “It was a day after
 a typhoon, so the air was completely clear and beautiful,” says Hilsendeger.
 After that, Hilsendeger decided that he would attempt to climb all 100 of
 Yamanashi’s famous mountains, and since then he learned that mountain
 climbing was the key to getting into shape and becoming healthier in life.
 “Weather is very important,” he states. “I always hope for good weather, but
 no matter what, I love it!” exclaims Hilsendeger as he describes his next
 goal; to conquer Japan’s 100 famous mountains, of which Hilsendeger has
 already knocked down 13 from Yamanashi.
                                                                                    Trevor and wife, Sayori, on top of
                        Most Memorable Climb:                                       Gongendake in the Yatsugatake range.

                        Mt. Sasayama                                        Most Recommended Climb:
                        Where: on the border of Yamanashi and                   Mt. Shakagatake
                        Shizuoka Prefectures.
                                                                                Where: above Misaka pass.
                       Why: Requires a 3 day backpacking trip into
                       the wilderness, and you must carry all your              Why: A good 1 day climb starting from a
                       own supplies                                             shrine.

                                              2008 Year of the Rat
                                               2008 is the year of the rat. Because the rat is the first
                                              sign of the Chinese zodiac, 2008 is a year of new begin-
                                              nings. 2008 is a great time to start new activities,
                                              explore new places, and build or start new relationships.
                                              Because 2008 is an Earth year, one should rely on plan-
                                              ning and preparation instead of good luck; choices made
                                              this year will have long term consequences whether good
                                              or bad. The year of the rat promises to bring much
                                              success and accomplishment.

       “You dirty rat, where did you take my snack?
       Why is it good manners that you lack? If you
       ever come back, be sure you’ll get a slap, and not
       a pat on the back.” -annon
                      January and
                      February 2008
                                      January 1st – February 24th,
                                      Kawaguchiko Light Fantasy
                                      (Christmas light illumination
                                      event) at Ohishi Park in
                                      Kawaguchiko.         Entrance
                                      free. Everyday from 5-10pm.

                                                                          January 1st – 6th, Yamanakako Art Illumina-
                                                                          tion Fantaseum at Hana no Miyako Park in
                                                                          Yamanakako from 5 to 9pm.

                                                                                         January 12th – February 17th
                                                                                         every Saturday and Sunday is
                                                                                         the      Kawaguchiko     Winter
                                                                                         Fireworks at Ohishi Park.
                                                                                         Entrance to the park is free.
                                                                                         Fireworks start at 8pm until
                                                                                         8:30pm; be aware of increased
                                                                                         traffic around the lake.

  Jan 26 – Feb. 11th, Saiko/Kawaguchiko Ice
  Festival at Yatcho no Mori Park at Lake Saiko.

                                                         Fujiten is open for Ski Season! Open weekdays from
                                                         9am – 5pm. Weekends and Holidays from 8:30am –
                                                         5pm. Night Skiing every Sat and Sun night from 4pm
                                                         – 10pm, and 1/1 – 1/6 everyday. Lift Tix: 4000yen
                                                         Weekday, 4500yen Weekend. Night Tix: 2500yen.
                                                         500yen printable discount coupon available at

                                      Skating at Fujisan Arena. Open Sunday through
                                      Friday 10am – 5pm, and Saturdays 12:30pm –
                                      5pm. Entrance 800yen, skate rentals 400yen.
                                      Entrance 400yen, skate rentals 200yen for
                                      Fujiyoshida residents (take ID).

The Reiho Fuji is a bimonthly publication of Fujiyoshida City Hall. Please send your comments, contributions, and suggestions.
                       Regular: Editor-in-Chief, Reiho Fuji c/o Fujiyoshida City Hall, 1842 Shimoyoshida,
                                           Fujiyoshida-Shi, Yamanashi-ken, 403-8601
                    English Website at:

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