Snowcapped Mt. Fuji is romance and adventure all rolled into one. The hike up to the top is a classic pilgrimage for the Japanese and now tons of visitors every year. But what should you be prepared for when making the climb? Here’s a quick guide of what to know:
It’s crowded all the way up. The only pro about this is that you can catch your breath easier since at times you’ll be moving at a snail’s pace. I suppose you can also use this time to think deep thoughts, if, like me, you become easily annoyed in slow-moving crowds. Just expect not to go that quickly.
As with most hikes, you’ll need plenty of layers. As one common route is to climb halfway, sleep at a station and then climb the rest of the way at night in order to see sunrise from the top, you’ll need plenty of wind- and rain-proof layers.
Bring whatever you need to make acclimatization easier. The 12,000-odd foot climb can really hit hard, especially if you’re already tired or in a bad mood. The climb is also pretty steep in areas, but you don’t need to be in terrific shape to complete it.
July-August is the high season, but avoid Bon holidays at all costs. Safety is rarely a problem. You don’t need a guide, and there are four trails to choose from. At times during the climb, it can seem more of chore than a pleasure, but when you’re at the top, all negativity disappears just in time for the climb down.
What do you suggest for a climb up Mt. Fuji?