Difficulty: 3/5

Hiking Distance: 8km 

Time: 6-8 hours

Elevation gain: 850m

Prefecture: Hyogo

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Mt. Seppiko

雪彦山

Elevation: 950m

Prefecture

Hyogo

Elevation Gain

850m

Distance

8 km

Time

6-8 hours

Difficulty

3/5

Accomodation

Huts & Campgrounds

Overview

Mt. Seppiko is an interesting hiking area north of Himeji city, the name isn't actually a specific mountain and is instead used to refer to a range of mountains with the main peaks being Mt. Otensho (884m), Mt. Mitsuji (915m), and Mt. Hokotate (950m). The hike features great views, exciting terrain, and is also one of the three mountains used by Shugendo monks for mountain training.

Note: In summer this environment is known for leeches, check yourself regularly and wear long pants. You can read more about prevention and removal here

Access

Car - A car is highly recommended for this trail due to the limited public transport options. You just need to reach this parking lot, if you're hiking on a weekend with good weather it maybe difficult to find a parking spot, so either arrive early or you can park at the Shikaketsubo Cottages which gives you an alternative starting point and nice camping options. 

Train + Bus/Taxi - If going by public transport, you'll need to reach Himeji station, from there you'll need to catch this bus and get off at the last stop. There are not many busses so I recommend staying the night at one of the cottages or this campground. This trailhead will add an extra 1-2 hours to the main hike and will take you past some beautiful waterfalls - just keep an eye out for leeches, I found 5 on my socks once I got back to my car.

Trailhead for Car: Google Maps

Trailhead for Bus: Google Maps

Maps

Trail Description

By Car

Hyozu Shrine Trailhead

Time: 6 hrs

Distance: 8km

Elevation gain: 850m

GPS map: outdooractive.com

Right next to the parking lot at Hyozu Shrine you will find the trailhead located at this camp ground on google maps. From here the trail is clearly marked and although there a many intersections it is quite easy to find your way. Enjoy the climb and keep an eye out for leeches if it's been raining. One note regarding the distance and elevation gain, the reports vary quite a bit between hiking apps and people's recordings, so the data I've listed here is an average. 

By Bus

Shikaketsubo Cottages Trailhead

Time: 7-8 hrs

Distance: 10.5km

Elevation gain: 1100m

GPS map: outdooractive.com

There are two trailheads that start from the cottages. One is a 3 minute walk up the road to the north, this trail is a bit more beautiful and the waterfalls are very nice. The other one is across the bridge next to the parking lot, and takes you past some nice river pot holes and smaller waterfalls. The potholes trail is slightly longer so it's up to you which one you choose. In both cases keep an eye out for leeches. 

After about 45 mins these two trails converge at what appears to be an old and possibly inactive campground, in a nice clearing with a lovely area for tents. Another 40 mins later you will reach the main trail, turn right here to do a loop around the rocky Mt. Seppiko peaks. I don't recommend hiking the other peaks to the north, there is no viewpoint and the trail is uninteresting, stick to the route described here.

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Elevation Profile

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By Car: Hyozu Shrine Trailhead

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By Bus: Shikaketsubo Cottages Trailhead

Weather  and  Seasons

Summer and autumn are the best times for this hike. There is likely to be snow hanging around until March. The autumn leaves will be colourful in the second half of November.

Useful links

Cautions

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River crossing

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Rock climbing

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Leeches

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Bears (rare)

Gallery

© Copyright
Himeji Hiking Waterfalls

Difficulty: 3/5

Hiking Distance: 8 km

Time: 6-8 hrs

Elevation gain: 800m

Prefecture: Hyogo

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