Monday, January 26, 2009
The first thing I said to a staffer at Washigatake was "watashi wa goofy desu" or in English, "I am goofy," reference to snowboarding with my right leg forward... Normal people are left leg forward. A couple of friends and I took a day trip to Washigatake in the prefecture of Gifu, about two hours away from Nagoya. This mountain is not as large as Stevens pass or Blue Mountain but it is not far to get to and relativity affordable. It was also really cool to be back in the mountains and snowboarding in Japan.I was one of the only people above the age of 5 who was wearing a helmet. But it was warmer then most snow caps I think. I tried to explain to my friends that helmets were normal in the US but no one was buying it. They were just laughing how many stripes were on my head.Around 1:30, I was asked "what would you like to have for lunch?" Without thought, I replied "Mexican!" Unfortunately, this was not an option, I was asked again, but with the choices of ramen or curry and voted for ramen. Lunched turned out to be really good. Typically at hills in North America you find pizza or nachos heated by lamps for lunch. At this hill, they were preparing the noodles when you ordered, I ended up getting this spicy Thai dish. The person how made it warned me to be careful, the spice was really really hot. But it was not to bad.Through out the day it would snow then be clear then snow again.When the sky would clear, you would get a really nice view of the central Japanese Alps. I hope to make a few more trips this year and check out some of the other mountains in this area and other parts of Japan.