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Photographer's Note

Lake Chuzenji (Chuzenjiko) is a scenic lake in the mountains above the town of Nikko. It is located at the foot of Mount Nantai, Nikko's sacred volcano, whose eruption blocked the valley below, thereby creating Lake Chuzenji about 20,000 years ago.

Chuzenjiko' shores are mostly undeveloped and forested except at the lake's eastern end where the small hot spring town of Chuzenjiko Onsen was built. The town is also the site of Kegon Waterfall, the most famous of several waterfalls in Nikko National Park. Another popular waterfall, Ryuzu Waterfall, is located at the northern shores of Lake Chuzenji where Yukawa River discharges into the lake.

Chuzenjiko is especially beautiful in mid to late October, when the autumn colors reach their peak along the lake's shores and surrounding mountains. And during Japan's hot summers, the lake's high elevation (1269 meters above sea level) keeps the area cool and comfortable, which in the past has attracted foreign embassies to build recreation villas along its shores.

It is possible to hike around the entire 25 kilometer circumference of Lake Chuzenji via hilly lakeside walking trails. Alternatively, the lake can be enjoyed from sightseeing boats that depart from Chuzenjiko Onsen. Panoramic views from above are possible from along the Chuzenjiko Skyline, an eight kilometer long former toll road which can now be used free of charge.

So much for the tourist blurb. I must add two observations: firstly, the small boats you see were visible all over the lake, especially the following morning as it was the last day that a small and sweet tasting local fish could be fished; secondly, the local people were quit dispirited because the tourist numbers were down and when winter sets in and snow covers the area, very few visitors arrive and the local economy hits its nadir.

bukitgolfb301, rginer, Vasa, Abyta has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Klaudio Branko Dadich (daddo) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3022 W: 103 N: 5252] (23549)
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