Daimonji = Hiking Fun For Me

Before the rainy season hit Japan I thought it'd be a good idea to tromp off to Kyoto for some hiking while the sun was still bright and the skies still blue. Once rainy season sets in I'll no longer be able to enjoy the rigors of 6 hour long hikes that swell my feet, blister my toes, and mock my pride.

So off to Kyoto I went. The first thing I saw was a big temple (which I didn't even bother to put a picture of on this page because I've already forgot it's name and never knew its significance aside from its utter lack of significance to me). What was interesting about the temple [after seeing a billion of them in Japan they start to loose their appeal] was that it was only a one minute walk away from a Roman style aqueduct (pictured above on the left and right). Why is there an aqueduct in the middle of Kyoto? Who knows and who cares. It was aqua-riffic is all I know and I spent many a long hours [when I say hours you can decipher that as meaning seconds] gazing at its wonderful craftsmanship and amazed at its ability to carry water from one place to another with such eloquence and grace.

But I hadn't come to Kyoto to idle around with my jaw agape basking in the glory of the inventive auspices of mankind. No I had come to go on a bone crushing, tendon tearing, spasm inducing hike to the top of Daimonji.

Daimonji is a big Chinese Character [which actually means Big] that's set on fire during a summer festival in Kyoto. (Left)

If you're interested in why and what it all means you can CLICK HERE to find out more. The guy who wrote the page did a pretty good job and there's no point in my reinventing the wheel so to speak.

The actual hiking took about 3 hours, but I'd already been meandering down around the aqueduct for about an hour before that, and then the 2 hours or so it took me to walk back to the station pretty much left me feeling like the victim of a mugging that had been handed to me by Mike Tyson after getting my tonsils removed. But the view of the city [Kyoto] that it afforded was pretty spectacular. Spectacular enough that you should follow in my footsteps? Well....

... buy a postcard with an aerial shot of Kyoto and then look at it outside on a sunny day. And you'll save yourself the triathlon that getting that view in person entails.

If you're going to do something both athletic and foolish I'd suggest reenacting my Trip To Lake Biwa and leave all the mountain climbing to goats, feral beasts, park rangers, and boy scouts.


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