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Autumn Color Report 2009

This are the official autumn color reports for 2009 from our trips to various autumn leaf spots across Japan. Check our page on Autumn Leaves for general information.

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2009/09/14 - Mount Asahidake

by schauwecker

Mount Asahidake with its steaming sulfur vents

Asahidake is Hokkaido's tallest mountain and the first place in Japan to see autumn colors each year. Therefore, we selected it as the first destination of our autumn color reports like in the previous year. Leaves in the mountain's higher elevations start coloring as early as August and usually reach the peak of their autumnal beauty in mid September.

A few days ago, the first snow was already reported on Asahidake (several days earlier than in the average year), prompting me to worry about a repetition of last year's white start to the autumn leaf report season, when Asahidake's autumn colors were already covered under a layer of snow. Fortunately, snow fell only around the summit and instead of covering up the autumn colors, provided an interesting contrast to them.

White flowers add additional color

A ropeway lifts tourists from the small town of Asahidake Onsen to above the tree line into an alpine plateau below the summit where small bushes rather than trees provide the seasonal colors. The colors were at their best. Many pockets of red, orange and yellow bushes dotted the landscape along the circular 1-hour trail that starts and ends at the ropeway's upper station.

Even more spectacular looked the colors around the Susoaidaira Plateau, which is a 90-120 minute hike (one way) north of the upper ropeway station. The trail for Susoaidaira Plateau branches off the circular trail around the Meotoike Ponds.

Susoaidaira Plateau

Visitors in the hope of seeing Asahidake's autumn colors should hurry, as the leaves' shiny colors are expected to start fading into brown in the next few days. Furthermore, they might soon get covered by snow.

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List of Posts:
2009/12/08 - Tokyo
2009/12/02 - Kamakura

2009/11/27 - Tokyo
2009/11/26 - Kyoto
2009/11/25 - Kyoto: Light Up
2009/11/23 - Nara
2009/11/22 - Kyoto: Ohara
2009/11/21 - Kyoto
2009/11/19 - Kyoto: Arashiyama
2009/11/18 - Tokyo
2009/11/18 - Kyoto: Higashiyama
2009/11/16 - Kyoto: Kurama
2009/11/16 - Mount Takao (Takaosan)
2009/11/12 - Kyoto
2009/11/09 - Fuji Five Lakes
2009/11/04 - Hakone

2009/10/28 - Mount Fuji
2009/10/19 - Nikko
2009/10/16 - Onuma Park
2009/10/15 - Noboribetsu Onsen
2009/10/14 - Shikotsu-Toya National Park
2009/10/07 - Hachimantai
2009/10/06 - Mount Akita-Komagatake
2009/10/05 - Nikko

2009/09/30 - Kusatsu Onsen
2009/09/28 - Kamikochi
2009/09/24 - Oze National Park
2009/09/16 - Tokachidake Onsen
2009/09/15 - Ginsendai
2009/09/14 - Mount Asahidake

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