Release | nobu Kawashima
The sea of clouds at Tsubetsu Toge filling Lake Kussharo in the early morning was extremely beautiful!
Tsubetsu Toge, located at 947meters above sea level, is getting noticed as a place to view a sea of clouds. By visiting in an early morning, you can encounter a truly superb view! You can view a sea of clouds filling Lake Kussharo, Akan mountains between clouds. You will feel very special as if you became a wizard living above clouds.
What kind of place is Tsubetsu Toge which is getting noticed recently?Tsubetsu Toge, located in Tsubetsu Town, is one of mountain passes dividing Kitami, Abashiri, and Kushiro. Tsubetsu Toge is located at higher elevation comparing to other mountain passes, and thus, people can get the view far away, and there are higher chances to encounter a sea of clouds.
▲Lake Kussharo is located at the foot of eastern side. You can enjoy this beautiful view from Tsubetsu Toge on a sunny day!
There is an observation deck at Tsubetsu Toge and open from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM during summer (June 1 to October 31). There are many trees around Tsubetsu Toge, so if you want to enjoy a beautiful view, you should climb to the observation deck!
▲Tsugaru Toge’s observation deck. The architecture design is inspired by old castles in Europe.
Sea of clouds occurs mainly in early mornings so people basically cannot climb to the observation deck to observe a sea of clouds.
However, you can enter the observation deck and enjoy a sea of clouds from the highest point if you participate in Tsugaru Toge sea of clouds tour.
▲You can get this superb view from the observation deck!
The starting point of this tour is “Lamp no Yado Mori Tsubetsu”, the hotel located at the foot of Tsubetsu Toge. The local guide comes here to pick up participants and takes to Tsubetsu Toge to view a sea of clouds. (Sea of clouds may not occur or the tour itself may be canceled according to weather conditions)
I participated in Tsugaru Toge sea of clouds tour in a morning of early summer. (I participated at different schedule from normal tour for shooting)
Heading to Tsugaru Toge in an early morningWhen I departed the hotel, outside was still dark, and it was very foggy. I was worried if I can view a sea of clouds as I head to Tsugaru Toge.
As we continued driving, fogs disappeared suddenly in the middle of mountain road.
“It looks like we can encounter a sea of clouds today.”
The guide told me. It looks like we had passed clouds and reached to the elevation above clouds.
Arrived at Tsugaru Toge before dawn
When I climbed the observation deck, wearing a thick jacket, I noticed the amazing sea of clouds!
I regretted so much, why did I not bring a jacket…?
However, they lend us jackets to participants of the tour at the observation deck. How nice their service is!
When I climbed up the observation deck, wearing a thick jacket, I noticed amazing sea of clouds!
▲Sea of clouds before dawn, there should be Lake Kussharo under the lake.
My sight was filled with a sea of clouds. Fluffy looking clouds like cotton candies pass above thick clouds as winds blow and the shape changes continuously.
As I waited for a while, the moment of breaking dawn was here!
▲The sun rose!
When the sun rose, the guide set up a table and gave me a cup of coffee.
▲The morning coffee with daybreak and sea of clouds, what more do I need?
The superb view continues after the daybreak!When the sun rose high, trees around started to shine, and I enjoyed another beautiful view different from daybreak.
▲People may not notice where you were just by looking at the pictures of clouds, but If you put Tsugaru Toge’s stone monument in the frame, it will be proof that you have seen a sea of clouds at Tsugaru Toge.
▲The view of Abashiri and Shiretoko direction. When the weather is nice, you can view the Sea of Okhotsk after clouds fade away.
▲The view of 180 degrees opposite side direction from above. I noticed mountains of Akan between clouds.
The superb view limited to those who climbed to the observation deck in early mornings. This is a special privilege above clouds for tour participants. I felt like a person above clouds, like a wizard.
▲I forgot about time and wanted to watch the clouds forever.
The chance to enjoy a sea of clouds at Tsugaru Toge is from June to October. I hope you can encounter a beautiful sea of clouds when you visit!
Text, photo / Hokkaido Likers photo-writer nobu Kawashima
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