Autumn Color Report 2013
Official autumn color reports by japan-guide.com

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2013/11/27 - Osaka Report
by scott

Minoo Waterfall

For today's report I paid a visit to Minoo Park (also Romanized as Mino or Minoh) about 30 minutes north of Osaka Station. The park is one of Osaka's better autumn color (koyo) spots and comparable to Tokyo's Mount Takao in that it is some nice outdoor nature in surprisingly close proximity to the bustling city.

Though today's walk was longer, it was a comparatively relaxing trek especially compared to yesterday's six stop dash through Kyoto's eastern mountains. The natural scenery was just what I needed after seeing so much of the "manufactured nature" that you are presented with in the temple gardens (and yes, I realize the irony in comparing a natural Osaka to a manufactured Kyoto, and yes, I realize that most of the maple trees along the road up through Minoo were probably planted there).

The lower areas of Minoo Park
The lower areas of Minoo Park
Nice maple trees approaching the tail end of their peak

Upon arriving at Minoo Station I immediately headed up the hill and into the lower areas of the park. There were relatively few colorful trees around there, which is one of the tradeoffs of natural koyo (and natural cherry blossoms too). The density just doesn't compare to gardens that have been meticulously designed by humans.

Just below Ryuanji Temple
Ryuanji Temple
Full maples around Ryuanji Temple
Look closely

I had a little trouble pinning down the state of the colors around the lower areas. Basically the more exposed trees were at the middle or end of the peak, while the more sheltered trees were still approaching the peak.

Maples at the peak
Maples approaching the peak
Maples not even close to the peak
Fallen leaves
Maple canopy
A side trail further into the walk

Off course, on the other hand you don't get 33 meter high waterfalls in manmade gardens, which is the reward for those who make the arduous, 3 kilometer long walk up the hill. Actually it's an extremely easy, paved road that you only barely notice is uphill at points. It's easily doable by people of all ages and abilities.

Approaching Minoo Waterfalls
And looking the other direction
Lots of people enjoying the falls

There were lots more trees as you got closer to the waterfall and lots more nice colors to be seen. Similar to yesterday, the leaves look to be around the end of the peak. The colors were nice and full, but somewhat dull (or even brown). Regardless, the park should remain nice for a little while longer, and I suspect that this weekend will be pretty crowded as people rush to get their koyo on before it is too late.

Many vendors were selling maple leaf tempura, a local specialty of the area

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List of Posts:
2013/12/11 - Tokyo Report
2013/12/10 - Kyoto Report
2013/12/06 - Kamakura Report
2013/12/03 - Tokyo Report
2013/11/29 - Kyoto Report
2013/11/28 - Kanazawa Report
2013/11/27 - Osaka Report
2013/11/26 - Kyoto Report
2013/11/26 - Tokyo Report
2013/11/22 - Kyoto Report
2013/11/21 - Miyajima Report
2013/11/20 - Tokyo Report
2013/11/19 - Korankei Report
2013/11/18 - Kyoto Report
2013/11/18 - Fujigoko Report
2013/11/13 - Kyoto Report
2013/11/12 - Tokyo Report
2013/11/11 - Sakurayama Report
2013/11/08 - Karuizawa Report
2013/11/06 - Fujigoko Report
2013/10/30 - Towada Report
2013/10/29 - Nikko Report
2013/10/29 - Yamadera Report
2013/10/28 - Urabandai Report
2013/10/22 - Gunma Report
2013/10/18 - Nasu Report
2013/10/17 - Nikko Report
2013/10/14 - Fujisan Report
2013/10/12 - Hakkodasan Report
2013/10/10 - Oze Report
2013/10/08 - Nikko Report
2013/09/27 - Tateyama Report
2013/09/21 - Kurodake Report
2013/09/20 - Asahidake Report

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