Not your regular Abominable Snowmen…

28 02 2011

No, these are ICE MONSTERS!  Or Juhyo in Japanese.

At the top of Mt Jizo, at the coldest time of the year, they gather under the full moon~

Okay, yeah, so they aren’t actually alive…  But they can look really creepy!  Literally like a huge group of icy monsters gliding along under the moon, ready to converge on the light…

Actually, the Juhyo are trees that have a build up of super cold snow and rime.  It doesn’t happen in many places in Japan, the conditions have to be just right, but at Zao in Yamagata you can see theses beautiful natural sculptures every year.  And go skiing on some fabulous slopes, soak in natural milky white hot springs, and eat delicious beef dishes made from beef raised in Yamagata itself.

It’s pretty famous within Japan, so it’s always busy, but it’s also so beautiful!

The best season for the Juhyo is in February, but they can also be seen in January and March.  Weather although is much harder to predict, with strong cold winds (-10 deg C when we went!) and high altitude, it changes very quickly.

As always, more photos of my visit to Zao can be seen on flickr!





I haven’t forgotten you!

24 02 2010

No really, I haven’t!  things have been a little busy recently with exams starting this week.  I have been working on a few posts, but it’s taken me longer than I intended to finalize them.  In the meantime here are a few of my favourite photos from Sendai, 2005.  Oldies but goodies.  Man I miss my old digital camera!

The tomb of Date Masamune, first lord of Sendai-Han.  An example of Momoyama Architecture.

Blue Hydrangeas

A stone walk from the Sendai Wild Plants garden.  Lovely place, super big garden!

Not Sendai, but from Zao in Yamagata prefecture, the Okama crater lake.

Until next post! Ciao~