links to APDL and KCC link to KCC homepage link to APDL homepage

Roads of Oku: Home


Inspiration ...

Matsuo Basho's Narrow Road to the Deep North, Translated by Nobuyuki Yuasa / Google Map: Bashō's Oku no Hosomichi ("Narrow Road to the Deep North")

Journeys ...

Spring 2004: On the Road in Kansai / Google Map
Summer 2005: Roads of Oku / Google Map
Fall 2006: Where Gods Alight / Google Map
Summer 2007: Hōkūle‘a in Yokohama / Map
Winter 2008: Snow Country / Google Map
Spring 2008: Full Bloom & Festivals / Google Map
Summer 2009: Fireflies & Sweet Fish / Google Map
Fall 2009: North Country Colors / Google Map
Summer 2010: Legends of the Land / Google Map
Spring 2011: On the Far Side of Disaster / Google Map
Summer 2012: Travels in the Fifth Moon / Google Map
Summer 2013: Far Roads: Finishing Touches / Google Map
Summer 2015: Saké-Tasting in the Kingdom of Local Brew

Memorable ...

Roads / Seacoasts & Coastal Roads / Bridges / Ferries / Walks & Hikes / Mountains / Ropeways / Rivers / Waterfalls / Lakes / Trees / Rocks / Caves / Hot Springs / Sakura / Fall Colors / Archaeology and History / Castles / Shrines / Temples / Gardens / Festivals / Food / Drinks
Photography: Dennis Kawaharada and Karen Ono

Note ...

On Driving in Japan

Roads of Oku: Journeys in the Heartland

A collection of essays on Japanese culture, history and literature. Available at Amazon.com. (Far Roads Press, 2015).

Fall Colors


Momiji/Koyo (“Colorful Leaves”)

Eikando, Kyōto. Fall 2014

Lake Chuzenji, Nikko. Fall 2009

Russet Hills, Narugo Gorge, Yamagata, Fall 2009

Lake Towada, Fall 2009. After the first snow of the season on November 1."Here in our mountains the snow falls even on the maple leaves."

Ginkgo. Mogami River Valley, Yamagata. Fall 2009

Momiji Valley, Yahiko, Niigata. Fall 2009

Maruo Falls, Kagoshima, Kyūshū. Fall 2006

Takachiho, Miyazaki, Kyūshū. Fall 2006

Susuki Grass


Harvested Rice Fields

Nihonmatsu, Fukushima. Fall 2009

Mt Iwaki, Aomori. Fall 2009

Squashes and Pumpkins

Nebuta no Sato, Aomori. Fall 2009

Ringo (Apples)

Apple Road, Aomori. Fall 2009

Apple Trees, Mt. Iwaki, Aomori. Fall 2009

Daikon (Turnips) Drying

Road to Cape Tappi, Aomori. Fall 2009

Kaki (Persimmons)

Nikaho, Akita. Fall 2009

Kiku Matsuri (Chrysanthemum Festivals). Fall 2009

The Chrysanthemum Festival was celebrated on 9.9 (by the lunar calendar, the ninth phase of the ninth moon of the year, usually in October). The petals of the kiku (chrysanthemum), infused in wine, was said to reinvigorate the spirit and impart good health and long life, important as the season of cold weather approaches. A legendary poet attained longevity simply by drinking dew from the petals.

As part of the festivities, elaborate displays of ki,u are found throughout Japan during October and November.

Hotel Lobby, Mito, Ibaraki

Tōkiwa Shrine, Mito, Ibaraki

At Kasumigajo (Nihonmatsu Castle) are displays of historic figures and animals made from kiku, and chrysanthemum contest winners.

Kasumigajo, Nihonmatsu, Fukushima

Shiogama Shrine, Miyagi

Hirosaki Castle, Aomori

Yahiku Shrine, Niigata