Advice appreciated on hike from Kamikochi, thanks a lot!
Your website is very useful, it is much more clear now how the routes work. I still have a number of questions though, hopefully you can help me. On October 14, I will go to the Northern Alps. We were planning to do the hike that you did, but then skipping the Daikiretto. This alternative route was already described by Julie in August 2013 (Day 1 - Kamikochi to Mt Yarigatake Sanso (via yokoo sanso, Day 2 - Yarigatake Sanso on to Karasawa hut (again via yokoo sanso, to avoid the Daikiretto), Day 3 - Karasawa hut via Mt Okuhotaka dake back to Kamikochi) You replied, that this three day hike would be too much. Would it be better to do this in four days, taking our time, or is this route still strenuous in 4 days? We are not experienced hikers but we are in shape, as we do a lot of sports.
Furthermore, I was wondering if the peaks of Yari-gata-ke and Mae-hotaka-dake can be skipped, or do you HAVE to climb and descend these in order to follow the route? The Lonely Planet points out that you can leave your packs and climb the peak, so I assume that you do not have to climb it in order to continue the route. Hopefully you know more about this.
And then the last question, what is the best way to go if we start with the ropeway from Shin-Hodaka Onsen up to Nishi-Hodaka-guchi? You described this as winning some time, but how does the route go from Nishi-Hodaka? The website of Japan-Guide says that "the trail beyond Nishi-Hotakadake is dangerous and should only be taken by experienced and well equipped mountain climbers." Do they mean the Daikiretto with this? Or can we still do the route without the Daikiretto, but just saving the 22 km hike which you describe on your website. The maps somehow don't make it very clear for me. Hopefully you can help me.
Thank you very much in advance,