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Fuji Attempt in September 2013

by Mike
(Oregon)

Hello all,

Thanks for all the good info here. I'd like to ask the experienced climbers about their hikes and some concerns.

I am arriving in Osaka on the 11th, and the initial plan was to visit Kyoto for a few days then take the train to Tokyo. Stay there a night and then take the bus from Shinjuku to Kawaguchiko 5th Station at 7:40am, then start the hike. Stay the night at one of the two open huts and hike the rest in the morning. With this scenario, I wouldn't be hiking until the 16th-17th.

Would it be better if I when I arrive in Osaka, go directly to Tokyo and hike Fuji? for a 12th-13th hike.

Does weather get that dramatically worse?

I saw a picture of the sign on the mountain once in a video and it said the 7th of September was the last official day? Is that true. SO being 5-8 days out wouldn't be terrible?

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Aug 28, 2013
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I think the summit P.O. closed on 8/26 last year...
by: Gary Wolff

Thx for the contribution, Mike! That's very kind of ya.

If you're referring to the summit P.O., you may be S.O.L., because it's my understanding that it closes by the end of August. Here's the pic of it I took last year: www.flickr.com/photos/wolffman/7847837208/in/set-72157631215550972

I'm afraid I don't know the answer to your Fuji walking stick question, but I can't think of any reason why they wouldn't still be available at the 5th station, besides possibly selling out because of the record traffic numbers this year.

As for the various stamps, that would seem to be on a case-by-case situation depending on the hut, whether they're still open, and if they are, whether their branding operation is open at whatever time of day you pass by.

If you need to know in advance, you could always just skype the huts and pose the question.

Alternatively, you could call English-speaking Yumi Matson at the Fujiyoshida City intl. affairs desk. She might know: (+81) 555-24-1236

Yes, by all means, pls. share your pics, vids, & story when you get back home. That'd be awesome and a great benefit to future climbers.

Where are you in Oregon? I have a daughter & son-in-law in Corvallis.

Thx again for the donation...


Aug 28, 2013
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donations
by: Mike

I agree with the information and the help you provided. I made a donation. Any thoughts as to how late the post office is open and if the sticks for branding will still be available? thanks :) Leaving for my trip tomorrow morning. Going to be a fun one! Can post pics and vids if need be.

Aug 17, 2013
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Probably not, but it depends on the hut & your arrival date
by: Gary Wolff

Mike, although probably not required in Sept., reservations @ mountain huts are definitely appreciated, especially on weekends & national holidays (there are 2 in Sept. 2013 on the 16th & 23rd Mondays), and the higher up the mountain the hut is located (As a rule, huts lower on the mountain are easier to book).

Most huts employ English speakers (often college students) who are used to handling requests from foreigners, so the fastest and easiest way to reserve a hut is call (or skype) the huts directly at the numbers listed on my mountain hut page referenced below (Oregon time (PDT) + 16 hrs. = Mt. Fuji time (JST)).

When making your reservation, you'll need to let 'em know the date of stay, how many in your party, your group leader's name (you'll need to spell it out....SLOWLY), :-) and whether you would like dinner and/or breakfast.

Gary

p.s. Sorry, Mike, but your "One more question" just expanded to 3. I need to get back to work, & I'm afraid your free account just expired. :-)

But at the bottom of the page, you will find a 'Donate' button... :-)


Aug 17, 2013
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Post office and Walking Stick
by: Mike

As I read more I think of more questions.

How late does the post office stay open and will walking sticks still be able to be purchased and stamped?

Aug 17, 2013
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Huts
by: Mike

One other question.

Being Mid to late September, should I bother reserving a hut?

Aug 17, 2013
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Thanks!
by: Mike

Thanks for the quick reply. After some debate with friends, I think I'll stick to the plan of Osaka, Kyoto, then upon arrival in Tokyo see what day is going to be best weather wise and go for it.

Oddly enough, September is close to being on par with July in regards to rain. About half were fairly dry.

Aug 17, 2013
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Limited bus service and a LOT of rain in September....
by: Gary Wolff

Hi Mike. Thx for your kind words.

The official climbing season ends Aug. 31. One problem you may run into in Sept. is the limited bus service, which begins to wind down after the end of the official season. :-)

You can take the Fujikyu bus from Shinjuku directly to the 5th Station until 9/23 (http://transportation.fujikyu.co.jp/english/gettinghere/12.html) and the Keio bus until at least 9/18 (https://www.highwaybus.com/rs-web01-prd-rel/gp/foreign/frgSelectLine?lang=en).

Of course, in a worst case, you can always share the ¥12,000 1-way taxi fare with other climbers from the base of the mountain in the Kawaguchiko/Fujiyoshida area. :-)

Another option is the Mt. Fuji Round Trip Ticket, which might save you some money: http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/fuji/index.html
Here are the train/bus timetables for that plan:
http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/pdf/fuji_timetable.pdf

One potential problem in Sept. is weather, when typhoons start blasting thru Japan. In Tokyo, Sept. is the 2nd wettest month, as you can see in the graph on this page: http://www.worldweatheronline.com/Tokyo-weather-averages/Tokyo/JP.aspx

Mountain huts shouldn't be a problem, as many are open well into Sept. Check this page for 2013 closing dates: http://www.garyjwolff.com/mt-fuji-mountain-huts.html

Happy climbing!

Gary


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