Steeper Murayama Kodo Trail Opens on Fuji

The Yomiuri Shimbun reports a new trail has opened on Fuji. The Murayama Kodo trail was the most popular route up the mountain until it fell into disuse in 1903, when an easier trail was opened. In 2002, the Tokyo-based Fujisan Club began clearing the trail. The new trail is a stark contrast to the modern method, whereby visitors travel to the fifth station–2,400 meters above sea level–and then ascend to the 3,776-meter summit along a relatively easy trail. Records show that the ancient trail was opened in the late Heian period (794-1192) as part of the rigorous training for yamabushi, ascetic Buddhist monks. The trail begins at Murayama Sengen Shrine, 500 meters above sea level. It served as the main trail until the middle of the Edo period (1603-1868), when a new route was opened.

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