The middle point of Bandai Azuma Sky Line, 1580 meters above the sea, Jodo-daira is a small stretch of flat bare of vegetation with Mt. Issaikyo (1,949m high) in front and Mt. Azuma Kofuji (1,705m high) opening its volcanic mouth. The desolation of the site defies expectation that beyond the hills are such beautiful mirrors of the mountains and the sky. An ascent of about 200 meters in height leads you to the hiking course around Kamanuma Lake. The path is paved with planks were the ground is marshy. Another course that beckons you to the heavenly Azuma Goshiki-numa (Azuma five-colored lake extends 400 meters above Jodo-daira. The course runs past Mt. Issaikyo, 1,949m high, and takes you to Goshiki-numa which is also called Witch’s Eyes. Both the courses, starting at the height of 1,600meters, are open. Along the paths shrubbery stretches on the volcanic ground. The system of Higashi Azuma is old and some are dormant volcanoes. Though access is convenient and you can easily enjoy the beauty of high mountains of 2,000 metes above the sea and high moor, and mirror-like lakes, the weather is subject to sudden change. You are requested to act carefully. If you want information about the area, drop in at the National Park Visitor Center at Jodo-daira.
Fukushima City Observatory is placed at Jodo-daira due to the land form suitable for astronomical observation. Observation of the sun and stars as well as observatory visits is possible. Phone: 024-543-0988
■Jodo-daira Visitor Center
The center is under management of an auxiliary organization of the Ministry of Environment. There are exhibits inside and images of Jodo-daira in different seasons are constantly shown on a screen. When visibility is poor due to bad weather, you can have an idea what Jodo-daira looks like by seeing the slides. Phone: 024-543-0986
The whole Jodo-daira is a high moor and trails are paved with planks. While on a stroll along the planks you can stop by at the lake Oke-numa. The crater lake about 100 meters across, is in the Boreal shrubs. In spring, rhododendron blossoms dot the lake’s surroundings and in fall you must hold your breath at the sight of the colored leaves with the lake mirroring Mt. Issaikyo in the middle.
About a ten minute climb brings you to the crater rim of the cone-shaped volcano. You can climb in normal shoes except high heels. It takes about 30 minutes to walk around the 1.5kilometer crater. On a fine day, there is a view of Fukushima City, Zao Mountains and the range of Adatara mountains.
The pass is halfway between Inawashiro and Fukushima on Route 115, the shortest route that connect the two towns passing by Mt. Kimen, the northernmost peak of Adatara mountains. The pass, 1,200 meters above sea level, used to be a place hard to go through during winter due to heavy snowfall. After the opening of the 3 kilometer Tsuchiyu Tunnel under Mt. Kimen, the road has become a pleasant driving route with a fewer number of bends. However, it is said that the old road afforded finer view. There is a way-in to Bandai Azuma Sky Line on the pass.
◆Sky Line Hiking Course
(1) Inawashiro--- (30〜60min drive) --- Jodo-daira on Bandai Azuma Sky Line--- Visitor Center(lecture)---Jodo-daira moor---(80min)---Mt. Issaikyo(view of Azuma Goshiki-numa) ---(50min) ---Suka-daira---(20min)---Kama-numa---(40min)---Jodo-daira moor---Jodo-daira parking area
(2) Inawashiro---(30〜60min drive)---Jodo-daira on Bandai Azuma Sky Line ---(10min)---Azuma Ko-Fuji (crater rim)---(10min)---Visitor Center (lecture)---Jodo-daira moor---(30min)---Mt.Horai---(10mn)---Suka-daira---(20min)---Kama-numa---(40min)--- Jodo-daira moor ---(10min)---Jodo-daira parking area
(3) Inawashiro---(30〜60min drive)---Jodo-daira on Bandai Azuma Sky Line---Visitor Center---Jodo-daira moor---(30min)---Oke-nma---(20min)---Toriko-daira---(30min on plank-laid trail)---Jodo-daira parking area
(4) Inawashiro (30〜60min drive)---Jodo-daira---(10min)---Azuma Ko-Fuji---(30min around the crater)---(15min)---Visitor Center (lecture)---Jodo-daira parking area
100 Shirominami, Inawashiro-machi, Yama-gun, Fukushima-Ken 969-3192Phone: 0242-62-2117 Fax: 0242-62-5175c/o Inawashiro Town Office, Commerce, Industry,
and Tourism SectionInawashiro Tourism Promotion Planning Committee