Release | nobu Kawashima
Hike at Mt. Hakodate - There are more attractions than night views! Let’s get to the summit with a hiking trail in nature
Enjoying the night view of Hakodate from the summit of Mt. Hakodate is one of the most famous sightseeing activities in Hakodate. The view is fantastic during the day, too!
You can use ropeway or busses to the summit and also by walking from the foot of the mountain. Approximately one hour hike to the summit uses the hiking trail with shadows under trees. The view from the top felt more beautiful when I walked until there! The feeling of achievement that only who walked to the summit can have is something exceptional.
Hakodate fortress near the 7th station was also astonishing!
▲Hakodate fortress. I felt like I accidentally walked into remains.
Table of Contents- There are many hiking routes to Mt. Hakodate
- From the foot of the mountain to Tsutsujiyama Parking
- Hakodate fortress was astonishing!
- The view from the summit was really fascinating!
There are many hiking routes to Mt. HakodateMt. Hakodate is located at the west end of the downtown of Hakodate City. It’s the name for a group of 13 mountains including Mt. Goten, Mt. Tsutsuji, Mt. Yakushi, etc.
The commonly called “summit” of Mt. Hakodate, where the observation deck is located, and visitors can enjoy night views of Hakodate, is the summit of Mt. Goten with 334 meters elevation.
▲You can reach the summit in three minutes from the foot by using the ropeway.
Mt. Hakodate did not allow general people’s entry and banned taking pictures in 10 kilometers inside area because there were fortresses to protect Tsugaru Strait from late Meiji Period to after World War II. Mt. Hakodate leaves much natural environment because most people could not enter the mountain for approximately half a century.
This is a hidden hiking destination where hikers can encounter rich nature and historical sites.
Mt. Hakodate has many hiking routes to the summit. In this article, I will introduce “Kyutozando Trail,” which is the most popular trail.
▲It will take approximately 1 hour to the summit. The trail is wide, well-maintained, slopes are mild. I can recommend this trail for beginners.
From the foot of the mountain to Tsutsujiyama ParkingThe starting point of Kyutozando Trail is Hakodateyama Fureai Center. Although space is limited, there is parking so you can visit by cars.
If you are visiting by public transportations, walk approximately 7-8 minutes from Mt. Hakodate Ropeway stop of the bus towards the summit of Mt. Hakodate.
▲Check details of the trail and use the restroom at Hakodateyama Fureai Center.
▲Get ready, and let’s start walking!
As I started walking the trail with mild slopes, I noticed a historic site on my left.
▲There is a water tank on the left. The tank was used during the time people used Hakodate fortress.
▲I reached the first station soon after there.
You will cross the roadway with 99 curves for a while from the first station. Watch out for cars and busses, cross the road, and reach to the mountain trail surrounded by trees. I kept walking to the summit.
▲Local high school students were running in the woods. How energetic they are!
Cedar forests, which did not grow naturally in Hokkaido originally, continues from the foot to the halfway up of Mt. Hakodate.
People had cut trees for fuels, etc., and Mt. Hakodate lost almost all trees over 200 years ago. Because of that, people planted young cedar trees, etc., after 1808 and it formed cedar forests today.
▲I kept walking under shadows of cedar forests. I felt like I was walking Edo FiveRoutes!
I kept walking to the second station and third station as I took several short breaks. I noticed a unique rocky cliff on the right.
▲According to the information board near the cliff, it was traces of lava.
Mt. Hakodate is a tied island formed by volcanic activities and crustal movements approximately one million years ago. It was connected with the land with flowed earth and sands from mountains and ocean currents. The downtown of Hakodate today is built on this sandbank.
You can encounter much nature at Mt. Hakodate. After lava, let’s talk about wild birds.
There are approximately 150 kinds of wild birds and around 600 kinds of plants. Mt. Hakodate is truly a treasure of nature. Some of the most known wild birds that can be observed at Mt. Hakodate are great spotted woodpecker and varied tit, etc.
▲“Great spotted woodpecker” - a group of woodpeckers with a voice like “kyo, kyo.” Its sound of drumming is also unique. (Hakodateyama Fureai Center provided the picture)
▲“Varied tit” is also the bird of Hakodate City. It’s a group of Paridae. The voice sounds like “tsutsu-pee, tsutsu-pee.” (Hakodateyama Fureai Center provided the picture)
Unfortunately, I don’t know well about wild birds. I could not identify which birds, but I heard lots of birds voices as I kept walking.
▲As I proceed to the third station, the fourth station, I could see the city between trees!
I am almost at the fifth station.
Kyutozando trail has a branch to the summit and a scenic spot Senjojiki. The fifth station is the branch of the trails.
▲The junction at the fifth station. Both of them spots Kyutozando trail. Which way should I go? Take a look carefully; the summit is the right!
Branches have signs so check those signs carefully not to take a wrong way. I could see the city in between trees more clearly after the sixth station!
▲I could see Yunokawa Onsen District and Hakodate Airport over Tsugaru Strait.
▲I could also see the summit!
I felt like I came up pretty high. I thought I am close to the goal when I saw the summit. The scenic view cheered me up!
▲I passed the 7th station. The sky got bigger from here.
You will arrive at Tsutsujiyama Parking soon after passing 7th station.
▲You can enter Tsutsujiyama Parking from the roadway going to the foot of the mountain. There is restroom so it would be an excellent spot for a break.
The summit is very close to here, but let’s take a break from hiking. Let’s change the mood and visit the “secret base”!
Hakodate fortress was astonishing!You can find the ruins of Mt. Goten second battery of Hakodate Fortress near Tsutsujiyama Parking.
▲Walk up the stone stairs from Tsutsujiyama Parking. You will find the secret base soon after!
▲What is it under the trees?
Hakodate Fortress refers to 5 big and small batteries and related facilities which was built from 1898 to strengthen the defense of Tsugaru Strait. It was redeveloped during the Taisho Period as Tsugaru Fortress and finished its role after World War II.
Mt. Goten second battery is one of them. You can see the ruins of that.
▲You can find ruins after going down the stone stairs.
▲The stairs continue to stock room underground. There is a fence, and you can’t enter.
Gun platform forms a pair, and three platforms are put next to each other. Stone-built walls surround each of them. It seems like a location set from a film, totally different from the world we usually live.
▲There were plants grown around gun platforms. It proves we live in a peaceful world.
▲Holes on the stone-built wall continue to the next gun platform. This is ruins of the speaking tube.
There is an open space with benches at a higher place from where gun platforms are located.
▲It seems like a perfect place to have lunch.
▲The view was amazing! The left side of Tsugaru Strait in front is Cape Shiokubi in Hokkaido, and the right side is Cape Oma in Aomori Prefecture.
There are more Hakodate fortress ruins in Mt. Hakodate. Those who have more physical strength should walk around other hiking trails to see more fortress!
The view from the summit was really fascinating!I went back to my hiking after seeing historical sites. But it was only a few minutes from here, just going up some stairs and slopes.
▲These stairs might have been the steepest part of this hiking trail.
▲The last was mild slopes and stairs.
▲I am almost at the summit!
▲I arrived at the summit! The view was fantastic! Tsugaru Strait was just below me.
People typically enjoy strolling the summit, like getting the view from facilities such as observation deck, by using ropeway or bus. You can do the same when you go up with hiking trails, too.
▲Isaribi Hiroba where you can get the view of Tsugaru Strait. I could see Cape Oma on the right very clearly.
▲You can take a memorial picture with the monument of Mt. Hakodate and the view of Hakodate Bay at Sancho Hiroba.
▲You can get the most famous view from the rooftop of Observation Deck! It is beautiful; even it’s daytime! Fascinating views!
▲Seeing Hakodate Port.
▲I could see an airplane just left Hakodate Airport.
I took approximately one hour from the foot, except the time to see Hakodate Fortress. I walked quite slowly.
You can reach the summit in just three minutes by ropeway, but I felt the view from the summit was very special when I took time to get there.
You should try yourself to walk up the mountain! I think you will want to walk to the summit again with different trails.
Text, photo / Hokkaido Likers photo writer nobu Kawashima