Mountain Climbing: Mountains in Akita changing the landscapes by seasons

Mt. Moriyoshi (1,454m in height) located in Kitaakita is famous for beautiful flowers and has very unique seasonal faces. From the top of the mountain, you can see Oga peninsula, Shirakami, Tazawako, and even Mt. Chokai when the weather is good. The beech forest spreads at the bottom of the mountain and more than 300 types of mountain flowers bloom as the elevation increases.

From spring to summer, various types of mountain flowers look very beautiful due to their color and shapes. In fall, broad leaves turn into yellow and read, and in winter it turns into a winter wonderland covered with snow and ice. These seasonal faces of the mountain are loved among many climbers.

Mrs. Okawa established the Moriyoshi Guide Club with local mountain guides and Matagi, traditional bear hunters. The club consists of experienced mountain guides and traditional bear hunters in Moriyoshi.

Mrs. Okawa: "We, the local mountain guides and bear hunters created the guide club having a will to introduce Mt. Moriyoshi to people. A characteristic point is that Matagi or traditional bear hunters join the club. The knowledge and experiences of Matagi make the guides very unique. Some of them are actually fluent in English and Chinese, so international tourists can also enjoy the tour. We know very well about Moriyoshi since we care about the area. We sincerely guide people so that tourists can learn about local biodiversity including various plants, bears, and other small animals and memories and traditions from the old days."

At the beginning of June, an event by the Moriyoshi Guide Club was held. More than 20 people enjoyed Mt. Moriyoshi with the guides. Participants were diverse from beginner to experienced climbers, and they all had fun with learning about local flowers and plants in the mountain while taking pictures of them.

Mrs. Okawa: "People come to the mountain for various purposes. For example, there are people who want to climb up to the top, those who just want to enjoy beautiful flowers, those who want to take pictures, those who want to have an extraordinary day, etc. We would like to meet their needs and have conversations with them. We, the guides are providing a safe service for tourists who have different needs.“

This was my very first time to climb a mountain, but that was so much fun. The mountain guide was nice to me, and I found mountain flowers very beautiful. I also found that walking in snow was difficult while climbing the mountain. I would like to climb again!