The Susuki Plain of Kirishima

An autumn hike between volcanoes

By Tristan Scholze    - 1 min read

As the trail moves past the burnt rocky landscape of Mt. Io, it opens up into a plain leading to the base of Mt. Karakuni and covered in dense tussocks of susuki (Miscanthus sinensis). Sometimes referred to as Japanese pampas grass in English, the distinguished inflorescence of this celebrated plant blooms in autumn and is so abundant as to dominate much of the Ebino Plateau. Although susuki tufts are normally whitish to brownish, look for some that are more the color of brownish red wine due to volcanic emissions. The Japanese word for shrimp, prawn, or lobster is ebi, and here the distinctively colored grass is renown enough to be the likely source of the plateau’s name.

すすきヶ原—susuki ga hara—Susuki Plain 硫黄山—iou-yama—Mt. Io 韓国岳—karakuni-dake—Mt. Karakuni

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Tristan Scholze

Tristan Scholze @tristan.scholze

I'm also known as Faer Out. I love learning about people and nature. I've traveled around the world and throughout Japan, and I hope to continue seeing and experiencing the wonder of this planet as long as I live.Based in Japan for nearly two decades, I'm the Regional Partner here for Fukuoka and Saga Prefectures. In addition to my work at JapanTravel, I have a language school called Rainbow Bridges English Academy in Fukuoka and am very interested in teaching, languages, communication, and photography, among other things. Recently, I've been a guest host on NHK World's J-Trip Plan for Caving Adventures in Western Japan as well as Exploration for Black Gold.I love heading downtown to meet up with friends for a night out as well as being able to hop on my motorcycle and be riding through forest-covered mountains or to sandy beaches in 20 minutes. This area is very photogenic and even after years of exploration, there are still plenty of places to discover each weekend! My photographs are available for purchase on iStock, Shutterstock, and Dreamstime or by contacting me.Please contact me if you have any questions about travel in Japan. I'd also be grateful for any follows on social media!