‘If you asked a kid to draw a mountain, that’s probably what they’d come up with,’ observed Dirk, looking back at the snowy pyramid of Tokushunbetsu-yama after a fine spring day spent on the mountain on skis a few years ago. In most seasons bar midwinter, this is one of my favourite hills in Hokkaido. As Dirk pointed out, it looks like a real mountain and with its twin Horohoro-yama along the ridge makes for a great day out among hills that feel higher than they really are. Good weather rewards you with sweeping views in all directions, though I have been surprised at how cold the wind can get up there. On my last trip we were greeted near the top by the first snowflakes of winter and a magical dusting of rime on the stunted birches along the ridge. The keen wind only made the post-walk rotenburo at our favourite Horohoroso onsen all the more inviting. The drive back to Sapporo goes past the Mushroom Kingdom きのこ王国rest area where a 100 yen bowl of tasty and warming mushroom miso soup is always welcome.
Tokushunbetsu-yama and Horohoro–yama Dayhike
徳舜別山｜ホロホロ山 | Tushi-shu-un-pet