An active volcano that was a holy mountain and is decorated by jewel-toned lakes and a solemn fall season
Mt. Ontake is on the border between Nagano Prefecture and Gifu Prefecture, standing 3,067 m tall. It has been revered by Japanese people as a religious mountain through the ages. Even now, disciples wearing white clothing (kimono for ascetic training) come and go there. There are various climbing routes, so you can choose a route depending on your schedule and physical strength. Examples include the Kaida-guchi route for peaceful tramping, the Kurosawa-guchi route, with a ropeway up to near the seventh station, the Otaki-guchi route, which you can drive on up to the sixth station, and the Nigorigo-guchi route, which a few climbers use.
The places of interest at Mt. Ontake are the five crater lakes. The lakes were named Ichinoike (first lake), Ninoike (second lake), Sannoike (third lake), etc. in the order of their generation. All of the lakes impress people with the beauty of nature. The water of Ninoike and Sannnoike is emerald green all year and sparkles like jewels. In addition, disciples have called the water of Sannnoike “Goshinsui” (holy water) and believed it is sacred. There are a well-established mountain lodge and a cafe for a rest beside Gonoike (fifth lake), at the lowest altitude among the five lakes. Make sure to go down the mountain safely by taking sufficient rests.
- Otakimura, Kiso-gun, Nagano
- 0264-22-4000 (Kiso Town Tourism Association)