Day 24 – Cape Ashizuri

I left at 6.30 this morning clutching my bag of croissants and set off down the coast for the last 24Km of the south west peninsula. It was a quiet Sunday morning and I was soon on the beach where the local fishermen were repairing their nets. I walked through woodland until the trail brought me back to the road for the duration.

The temperature soon rose to 27 degrees and there were no convenience stores. As usual I drank from the vending machines which saves carrying a lot of water. It was another beautiful walk with extensive views of the Pacific Ocean.

Eventually I reached the Temple 38. It is the most isolated of all 88. It is nestled in the hills and surrounded by trees rising high in the hills. There were many pilgrims but few if any of them are walking pilgrims. It’s quite unusual to come across another pilgrim while out walking.

The atmosphere in the temples is very calm and peaceful. Quite agreeable. I can often sit in the grounds looking at the different buildings and statues and landscaping for ages. Incense adds to the serenity. I’ve lost track of my favourites so it will be fun to sort through my photos and see how many I can remember.

Opposite the temple are a few shops. I bought an ice cream and while eating it a man came up to me and we had a basic chat (no I’m not American) and then he gave me 200 yen as settai. Isn’t that amazing? In return I gave him one of my prayer slips. I’ll leave it at the next temple.

I had a look at the sights (the lighthouse and a rock in the shape of a turtle) but like everywhere else, there is very little development and no reason to stay so I’ll continue on my way tomorrow. There is a choice of routes to Temple 39. The shortest (52Km) requires backtracking all the way to yesterday’s tunnel and then crossing the hills to the west coast. The most challenging is to hike up something called the Ashizuri Skyline, up the central spine of the peninsula. The longest (72Km) is to follow the coast. None of the options has a store.

Something to contemplate over dinner.

Fishermen repairing their nets

Temple 38

Temple 38

Sandrine has reached the end of her pilgrimage

13 comments on “Day 24 – Cape Ashizuri

  1. Amazing views. What a wonderful experience. The rain here today is torrential. Looking at your photos I would love to swap places

    • Hi Lucy I’ve had my share of torrential rain but you’re welcome to a few degrees of heat. When is it ever going to cool down?

  2. So beautiful!

  3. You seem to be much more content on your own, without other pilgrims, this time than on past Caminos, Tim. And certainly much more accepting of the lack of acceptable dining options! I could feel the peace and contentment radiating out of this post. I’d say all this walking youve been doing has been good for you, indeed!

    • Thanks DJ, I was expecting these kinds of challenge in Japan. I’ve been fortunate to have met a few other pilgrims so far. I hope I can cope for a little longer.

  4. Huguette Charaudeau

    Hi Tim
    It ‘s a pleasure to read your post and your photos are very nice. They allow To dream except for the typhoon and the meals.. 😉
    Good Luck.

    • Hi Huguette, thank you for the kind messages. I think it will be sometime before I visit a Japanese restaurant in London.

  5. Vicky Williamson

    Kia Ora Tim, I look at your photos and they make me itch to leave now (I know, too late, winter coming) rather than in March. I plan to sleep ‘nojuku’ at times so will carry a sleeping bag so my weight will be about 7.5kgs without water. – same as the VF walk. Looking forward to reading about your choice of route to Enkokuji. Ki o tsukete, ganbatte. Vicky

    • Hi Vicky, you can contact me after I’ve finished and I’ll help you with your planning if you want. Tim

    • Tassie Kaz

      Hi Vicky,
      A little hint; check if your intended dates coincide with Golden Week. If so, nojuko may be your only option! Depending on where you are & your level of planning, GW can be anything from a minor nuisance to a total nightmare. 😄
      Happy planning.

  6. Tim, your blog is addictive! The photo’s are wonderful adding to the atmosphere.

  7. Vicky Williamson

    Kia Ora, Tim and Tassie, thanks for the tip about GW but I plan to be finishing about the end of April so will avoid most problems. Thanks Tim for the offer of help, I’ll take you up on that. Ki o tsukete, ganbatte

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