by Scott, staff writer of japan-guide.com
This journal is a log of my travels within Japan. Here you'll find my personal opinions on the places I've been and the things I've seen. Also expect to see the occasional review and editorial. Thanks for reading.
2008/10/29 - Lake Towada
Today we explored the autumn colors around Lake Towada, which straddles Aomori and Akita Prefectures and is a part of the Towada-Hachimantai National Park. Towadako, as it is known in Japanese, is one of Japan's deepest and clearest lakes as well as a popular leaf viewing destination. We weren't disappointed as its forests were ablaze in color.
We started the day by taking a sightseeing cruise on the lake which followed the shore around two peninsula which jut out into the lake. We were fortunate with our timing as most of the trees were colored red, yellow and orange. The cruise ended at Nenokuchi village which is where the Oirase Stream begins.
The Oirase Stream is a the only outlet from Towadako and has created a gorge through the mountains. It is the most popular attraction of the lake as it offers nice hiking and wonderful photo opportunities. It was raining when we started hiking the 9 kilometer long trail which runs along the stream but that didn't prevent us from getting some really nice pictures.
The colors were really quite nice. While there was a fair share of green, most of the trees have turned yellow and red by now. With waterfalls enhanced by autumn colors at practically every turn I would say that Oirase Stream during fall is one of the best photo spots in Japan.