We left the sumo tournament and set off for Fuji. First we had to actually get to the mountain, which involved a bullet train and two local trains. Then we had to convince a taxi driver who spoke no English to drive us up the side of a mountain. Although it sounds simple enough, we had a slight miscommunication and ended up on route that was much longer and involved 400 more meters of vertical climb than the normal route. Who could of thought Tim and I would have trouble with a hike? But we started hiking anyway at 10:10pm.
Us at one of the early stations. Note how happy and warm we look. Also note that Tim has no shirt on. Why? Because we're Americans and we can.
Further up we found a station that still had someone awake. We bought cup o' noodles for the equivalent of $7 each. But they tasted darn good.
The sun began rising about 4am. We weren't at the top yet and were cold and tired so we watched the sunrise and rested in a hut for a while (for $10 each).
Hundreds of people pushing on to the summit. Japanese people apparently like to wear colorful clothes while hiking.
We pushed on towards the summit.
The long road we'd come. (Really that's the slightly less long road most everyone else came on.)
The summit finnally, at about 7:30 or 8am.
Of course at the top is a large number of shop and souvenir stands.
The crater of Mt Fuji.
We hiked down (arriving at 11am for a 13 hour hike) and eventually caught a bus into town. We decided to take a well deserved (and sorely needed) trip to an onsen, a Japanese bath. We cleaned up and caught another train and then another train and finally got back to our hotel room at 6pm. That was a hell of a long day. We planned on doing a couple of other things, but slept through our alarms.
All told one heck of a trip. I earned myself elite status on Delta. All said and done, I had seven flights with a grand total of in-the-air time of about 38 hours. I saw lots of crappy movies but made it home safe to travel again another day. Where to next? Only time and where I can find a free place to stay will tell.