We recently had the opportunity to spend a day at the house of Hitomi, a Hachimantai local, in the Ashiro neighborhood. She is not only a master of local cuisine, but also the wife of a retired “matagi” – or bear hunter. A group of us got to spend the day here, learning to make soba noodles and feasting up other traditional dishes that she made for us. But beyond the food, just exploring her house was a treat. It felt like it was a time capsule from 100 years ago. The soba and wild veggie dishes were both healthy and tasty. Hitomi-san is opening up her house to tourists to share the best parts of traditional Hachimantai culture. Take advantage of this great opportunity if you can!
Bear hunting in Japan is a long tradition in the north, and no parts of the bear are wasted. Besides the delicious meat, there are various items that can be made from all parts of bears. In modern Japan, however, the number of bear hunters is dwindling. In fact, I was invited to learn bear hunting by the family, though sadly my work schedule won’t allow for the addition of that very exciting hobby.
September 7th and 8th was the 2nd Annual Lodge Clubman and Rossignol Hachimantai 2-day Mountain Biking event! Last Saturday and Sunday 10 members including our hosts met at Lodge Clubman in Hachimantai to try out the newest Rossignol Mountain Bikes and learn how to ride them. (more…)
The 2019 (2nd annual) Hachimantai Hill Climb Race was held on Sunday, August 25. We went up to the base of the Hachimantai Aspite Line to watch the race and cheer for participating friends. The temperature at the starting line was a refreshing 18 degrees Celsius at 8:00 a.m and a bracing 10 degrees Celsius at the finish line. The main course was 19.1km with a maximum elevation of 1,083m. The average gradient was 5.7% with a maximum gradient of 6.8% and a total elevation gain of 1,134 meters. (more…)
Throughout most of Japan the cherry blossom season is finished… but not in Hachimantai! This is one of the few places in Japan where the cherry trees are still in full bloom! Kenminnomori has both beautiful cherry blossoms and stunning views of Mt. Iwate!
Enjoy the beautiful birch forest, cherry blossoms, and Hachimantai Aspite Line and snow corridor all in the same day! It’s an experience you won’t soon forget!
The first Hachimantai Hill Climb Race was held in 2018 on the Hachimantai Aspite Line and met with rave reviews. Now is your chance to sign up for the 2nd annual Hachimantai Hill Climb Race! It is scheduled to be held on August 25, 2019, and of course features spectacular views and an excellent course through the Towada-Hachimantai National Park.
Watch interviews of the first race, highlights of the area, and a full course POV video with all the details here on our Hachimantai Hill Climb Race page.
Held each year in mid-August, Hachimantai’s Hanabi Matsuri, or Fireworks Festival, is not to be missed! The event is headlined by a series of taiko drumming performances, followed by a traditional Sansa dance.
Now the Hachimantai Hill-Climb Race 2018 is ready for you!