Saturday, June 30, 2012

Cycling-Day 6-Tokyo->Hakuba(272.0/6,668.4km)

Day 6, 99days for cycling, total distance 6,668.4km, total climb 88,919m
Tokyo->Hakuba 0:12-16:59
Distance today 272.0km, climb 4,252m, duration 14:19, avg speed 19.0km/h, burned 6,218kcal
Gear: Eurasia 520
Today's route

Bicycle ride from Tokyo to Hakuba, that's what I needed to accomplish someday.

Google map tells me the entire course is 250km.
I am a slow rider and I need more than 15 hours to complete.
I needed to do in this season, as the daylights are longest. Otherwise the start or the arrival will be in the darkness.
But I needed to encourage myself when I start. I had stayed away from it because it is a rainy season. That's my excuse.

The forecast said Saturday should be fine. I could finish the job early on Friday. Now I realized it is my destiny to go today.
I took diner early and short rest and decided to leave at 0am.
I could leave Tokyo at night and arrive in Hakuba in daylight, or leave Tokyo in the morning and arrive in Hakuba at night. The roads are not dark in Tokyo.
I decided to run Tokyo at night.

I usually stay very late and get sleep at 2am or 3am. It was hard for me to go asleep at 9pm.
I could not sleep well but I started 0:12am as planned.

I needed to run through the dark residence area very carefully. A car runs fast, a bicycle may suddenly turn from a corner without flashlight (and using a mobile phone).
I ran carefully to the main rode, KanNana street.

Main roads in Tokyo are well-lighted and easy to run. It's more safe if you look visible well.

Traffic signals did not work very well. They always turned red at every stop. The average pace remained slow.

1:18 Yahara crossing.

KanEtsu express way is very close. I was surprised I could come here in one hour. It may take more than one hour for driving if the traffic is heavy.

2:19 Kawagoe.

Now I could run faster, as the traffic lights were all green.

3:20 Higashi Matsuyama.

The predawn at Ranzan.

4:27 Tamayodo

The morning. I took a rest as I became hunger-knock.

6:23 Tomioka city.

It became hot. It was cloudy and cool enough when I came to Matsuida.

8:09 Yokokawa station, just before Usui pass.

Now I climb Usui pass. I know this route very well as I climbed here two years ago.

The slope is not too steep. I could run with higher gears like this.

9:41 the peak of Usui pass, just before Karuizawa.

10 minutes more than the last time. I should be exhausted after 160km running.

Cool and nice breeze in Karuizawa.

I have my ancestors grave. I visited there and went to my favorite cafe after it.
It was crowded and I could not stay there.

I bought a sandwich at other my favorite bakery at Oiwake, at 10:59.

Oiwake is the highest point through the route today. 1008m elevation above the sea.

Now I descend all the way to Shinonoi for next 40km.
This is nice, but this is awful if I return from Hakuba to Tokyo. This 40km will be the nightmare.

12:09 Unnojuku, an old town well preserved.

13:13 Sakaki  town.

I found a good kayaking spot. It looks a nice wave.

13:47 Koshoku IC.

I checked the alternative road two weeks ago, but the road was not convenient for going to Hakuba. I chose R19.

Komatsubara tunnel has a narrow shoulder and lots of  traffic. It looked very dangerous but I found a nice side road on the right.

R19 has side roads. It was nice for bicycle, but the side roads may be on the right or on the left. I had to change the lane many times.

14:57 Hakuba Nagano road.

I have already checked the road two weeks ago. Now Hakuba is not far.

15:32 An old official residence of Nagano governer.

16:59 finally arrived at Hakuba.

270km from home in Tokyo, total work hours 17 hours, and net running hours were 14 hours 19mins. I totally exhausted, but I made it.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Cycling-Day 5-Tamagawa(77.1/6,396.4km)

Day 5, 98days for cycling, total distance 6,396.4km, total climb 84,667mTamagawa 8:23-18:22
Distance today 77.1km, climb 891m, duration 3:52, avg speed 19.9km/h, burned 1,733kcal
Gear: Eurasia 520
Today's route

I ran along Tamagawa river.

I drove the guests to Shinagawa station for Shinkansen.
After it I rode on the bike.

Tamagawa allows me to run very quickly and far.

Marukobashi bridge.

This is the first run on Tamagawa in this season.

I ran for 2 hours and arrived at Ogami park in Akishima city.
40km from home. Now I go back home.

Tamagawa river had nice blue water.

I found some nice waves. They seem to be good for kayaking.

The space under the bridge of Odakyu line was very crowded by people for barbeque,

but it is prohibited this year.

4 hours for about 80km, it was cool and nice cycling

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Tokyo sightseeing -day 3

Continued from Tokyo sightseeing -day 2.

Today the guests spent many hours for shopping.

The daughter was excited to visit KIDDY LAND, but the Harajuku main branch was closed for renovation. I found another at Futako tamagawa, newly opened.

Everyone was excited to see a car transpoted at the parking lot.

This was the second time to see, and the first one was yesterday. I was also excited.

She found an accessory she wanted. Very good.

We spent 3 hours here. We had lunch at a roadside restaurant, Kobeya.

After lunch we went to Okubo, a Korean town.

They have known about Korean stars and dramas and were very excited.

After Okubo, we visited Takeshita street again, to see costumed girls.
They could see some.
At Harajuku it was difficult to find a parking lot. I stopped the car and waited for them in the car.

The last place was Shibuya 109.

They were also excited here.
I was also in the car, as it was hard to find a parking lot.

For diner we went to Sizzler.

The day after, June 25, we drove them to Shinagawa station for Shinkansen.
I hope they enjoyed in Tokyo.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Tokyo sightseeing -day2

Continued from Tokyo sightseeing -day1.

For the Tokyo sightseeing day2, we went to very typical sightseeing spots.
Tokyo tower. We did not go up, but they enjoyed taking pictures from the bottom.

Then we crossed the Rainbow bridge.
They wanted to see the loop road.

Also they liked the beach at Odaiba.

Hamarikyu Garden.

A bride was taking her picture.

Then everyone went to Asakusa by boat from here. This is a typical sightseeing course when we have a guest from abroad.
I drove my car to Asakusa while they take the boat. Asakusa.

A golden sculpture and Tokyo Sky Tree.

Many people were taking pictures.

Lunch at Kamiya Bar, an old cafe.

They liked Tempura.

After lunch we went to Sensoji temple. Kaminarimon gate.

We went through Nakamise street.

It took longer while they looked into many shops.

After Sensoji, we went to a Japanese candy store, Amezaiku YOSHIHARA.
They were very impressed by the technic.

In the evening we went shopping in Ginza

For diner we went to a family restaurant for a salad bar.
They liked the salad but the desert was not good.

Continue to Tokyo sightseeing -day3

Friday, June 22, 2012

Tokyo sightseeing -day 1

We had guests from US. We took them to look around in Tokyo.

They are French and live in US. They spent in Kyoto, Nara and Nagoya, then came to Tokyo.

They wanted to see some spots along Yamanote line. We used one-day passes of JR (Japan Railroad). We met at Shinagawa station of Shinkansen, then we moved to Shibuya.

We walked up Koen Dori st. and down to to the station.
Then we moved to Takeshita st. at Harajuku.
I had no picture so far, as I was busy for guiding.

After Harajuku, we moved to Akihabara, the capital of Japanese subculture.
The first picture is of the AKB48 shop. A store next to the AKB48 shop was for Gandum.
They were interested in a maid cafe. I asked Facebook friends to pick a good one, but they didn't like it when they came and see it.

Then we moved to the palace. They liked the nice and calm atmosphere.
This is the first time for me to see the double arch bridge.

For diner we went to Tsubame Grill at Ebisu station.
They liked a humberg stake and grilled potato with cheese.

Continue to <A HREF="">Tokyo sightseeing -day2</A>.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Cycling-Day 4-Zenkoji temple(101.1/6,319.3km)

Day 4, 97days for cycling, total distance 6,319.3km, total climb 83,776m
Zenkoji temple 8:23-15:23
Distance today 101.1km, climb 2,845m, duration 5:56, avg speed 17.0km/h, burned 2,391kcal
Gear: Specialized Rockhopper Pro
Today's route

I went to Zenkoji temple.

It was rainy yesterday, but the sunny weather was forecasted. When I got up the road was still wet but it was not raining any more. I started at 8:23. 9:15 Arrived at Shirasawa pass.
Hakuba mountains are being seen.

Descending now from here.

10:55 Almost arriving at Nagano city. The downtown was nicely seen here.

The route has several ascensions and some tunnels. It may not be good for cycling. Zenkoji temple.

Arriving at 11:02, 2hours 22 mins, 45km from Hakuba. I visited the temple and prayed.
The 卍 symbol is not a Hakenkreuz of Nazi party, but an Indian swastikaa fylfot. This symbol is popular and seen at many Buddhist temples.

After Zenkoji I went through Nagano city to Shinonoi.
Now I come back to Hakuba. I chose a route climbing up to Chausu-yama hill.
That was a lot of work to climb.
Nagano downtown was nicely seen.

This gate looks a Samurai mansion, but is of the golf club.

Now descending.

Hakuba mountains are seen. Nice view. Nice road to run.

It was not good a pass just back to Hakuba, but good to enjoy riding.

Hakuba-Nagano toll road.

20yen for bicycle. On the right side there is a large path for cycling.
I use this road everytime to come to hakuba, but I always drive here at night.

An old building at Ogawamura. This used to be an official residence of Nagano governer.
Aogu cross point. Hakuba is just after this slop.

I became exhausted and slowed down. Now I came back to Hakuba.
Mountains and nice blue sky became seen.