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Mt. Kurikoma

A hike amongst the splendor of autumn

Found on the border between Iwate and Miyagi prefectures, Mt. Kurikoma (栗駒山) is a volcano that is 1626 meters at its peak. Part of the Ou Mountain Range, it was chosen as one of 200 mountains that represent Japan. It was named after a horse-shaped collection of snow that can be seen on the west side of the peak around early summer (the "koma" of Kurikoma means horse). Mt. Kurikoma has a crater lake called Lake Showa, which is a beautiful emerald color. In autumn, the fiery leaves are an amazing sight.

There are ten courses to the top, although some have been closed since the Great East Japan Earthquake. The length and difficulty of the courses vary, the shortest taking about 1 hour and a half, and the longest over 5 hours. Even in May there is still quite a lot of snow, and in autumn it can be wet and slippery, so appropriate hiking gear is highly recommended. Since access is only really by car, you can easily bring everything you need.

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