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October 11, 2009
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Sunrise at Kaimon-dake (開聞岳): possibly the finest sunrise I have ever witnessed.

As you may be able to tell, Kaimon is commonly referred to as the “Mount Fuji of Satsuma” (where Satsuma was the old province that now forms a large part of the present day prefecture of Kagoshima). The hike up is a reasonable circular path starting around sea-level and finishing at the 924m summit with clear-weather views towards the smoking peaks of Sakurajima to the north and Satsuma-Iojima to the south. However, for many volcano lovers the mountain’s shape is enough to wetten the appetite and it certainly has my vote as the best Fuji-San imitation.

What’s yours?

5 Comments leave one →
  1. October 12, 2009 2:10 am

    Hey Tom – beautiful photo of Kaimon-dake. We’re heading down to Kyushu later on this month, and Kaimon is on the climb list. Yuka was wondering where you took that splendid shot from?

    • October 12, 2009 7:18 pm

      Hiya Chris,
      Yeah it’s an amazing spot – I just took that photo with a normal little digitial camera, but it was a lovely morning.
      Here is the site of the ryokan we stayed at:
      Lots of camping spots nearby as well – way out east beyond Makurazaki (Bonotsu?) are some incredible beaches.

      • October 13, 2009 4:34 am

        Many thanks! Mmmm, Ise Ebi… that might have to make it onto our schedule. Although the tentative plan right now is to bivvy out on the summit of Kaimon (but don’t tell anyone 🙂 )

  2. wesu permalink
    October 17, 2009 1:20 am


    I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but I’m not sure that you can actually find space flat enough to bivvy comfortably on the summit. There’s a lot of overgrowth on the summit plateau and there’s no trail to speak of. The official high point is quite rocky and not very flat.

    Perhaps kazan otaku can back this up or refute my summation?

    I think Kaimon is a perfect Fuji lookalike, but don’t count out all of the ‘baby Fuji’ peaks out there. My personal favorites are Azuma ko-fuji and Komezuka near Mt. Aso.

  3. October 17, 2009 6:34 pm

    Komezuka – too perfect!!
    Yes, would agree about the summit of Kaimon, but you could find a cosy spot under the overgrowth or between a rock or two!

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