This article has been coming for a while. Mike "Saffa" as he calls himself - yes sometimes I question our friendship - has asked constantly where on earth this article was, well it is here now. We set off on another adventure and this time we were Japan bound. And yes we did climb a mountain/volcano known as Mount Fuji....yip we are a big deal. I may have told a few of my friends about this a few times, so they are pretty sick of hearing about it. It all comes down to one thing though...jealously...unless you are like my smelly Welsh friend Sam who has climbed Kilimanjaro then maybe he isn't jealous. Anyway I am rambling, first off the pic above is not mine, it's straight off Google because well I climbed in Summer because I thought it would be warmer. How very wrong I was. The pictures and videos below are mine so have a look.
Yip that is the sign that set us on our way. To fair, I took that on my way down because we started climbing at 8pm. Why we did this, was to avoid the heat, but more importantly, to see the sunrise. It was such a mission to actually get to the base of the mountain from Tokyo. The travel assistant at the train station refused to sell us a ticket to get there as she said it was to late and we needed a hotel booked at the base. So of course we told her we had a hotel...if you must lie, lie with a smile. Anyway we got there in the end after 2 trains and a bus. And off we went.
We had booked a cabin half way up the mountain as they said we would suffer from altitude sickness if we did not rest and adjust. However once we reached the cabin, we looked at each other and decided we were real men. We could do a bullet climb. Plus there were huge tour groups climbing very slowly behind us and we needed to stay ahead of them. It was tough going in the dark and if you do not have a head lamp then you are in for a nightmare of an experience. The ground is loose gravel/lava after all so it's not that easy.
Saying that however, getting to the top wasn't that tough and most people could do it. You might not be able to do it fast (Shane) but you will be able to do it. To start climbing in a vest/tank because it is hot, only to arrive and feel like you are going to freeze to death was probably the toughest thing. It was so so cold. I tried to cuddle Mike, he wasn't up for it at first but even he with his steroid enhanced muscles gave into the need for warmth. I would have taken a blanket if I knew it was going to be like that.
But in the end, getting up there early and sitting in the cold for 3 hours was worth it. We got to see something amazing, but more importantly we got to beat the crowds to the top. We literally....and I mean literally, got the best seat in the house...mountain. It was great and the view was something I will never forget. Coming down was probably the hardest part and by the end my shoes has disintegrated into nothing and I had to hide them under a vending machine. Anyway take a look at the vids and pics below they are really cool. I recommend this to everyone it was awesome.