At 2,500 m, this is the highest point on the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route. There are many places that you can take a walk to, such as Mikurigaike. You can also see “Raicho” a kind of ptarmigan, drink delicious spring water or even take a bath in a hot spring.
Points of Interest – On the Mikurigaike pond course
Tateyama has some of the heaviest snowfalls in the world. An average of 7 m accumulates every year. In heavy years up to 20 m can accumulate! That’s as high as a 10 story building! You can walk 500 m between the walls of snow and enjoy sledding in April. You can also watch the snow being removed from the road. Impressive views can be seen just after the road is opened at the end of April until June. After July the walls of snow become shorter but some snow remains even in August. You can play in the snow.
One of the most picturesque spots for a stroll at Murodo. This is a crater lake of Tateyama Volcano. From June you can see the peak of Mt. Tateyama reflected in the cobalt blue surface of the pond. This pond was called “a kitchen pond for god” and its water was used to cook meals for the god residing on the mountain. This area is home to many rare alpine plants and “Raicho” birds can be seen hiding in the pine bushes.
Mt. Tateyama Reflected in Mikurigaike
The iconic landscape of Murodo. The pond can be covered in snow until June. From July to October the peak of Mt. Tateyama can be seen, mirrored in the pond’s cobalt blue surface.
Tateyama Tamadono Spring Water
This delicious natural spring water has quenched the thirst of many visitors. It is drinkable from early June when the snow starts to melt through to late October.
Mikurigaike Hot Spring
This is the highest altitude natural hot spring in Japan. Half way along the Mikurigaike pond course there is a rest are where you can take a bath in a hot spring during the daytime. You can also enjoy an ice cream here.
This is the observation deck above Mikurigaike Hot Spring, from which you can see Jigokudani.
Chinoike (Blood Pond)
Wetlands interspersed with blood red pools. The red color comes from the high concentration of iron oxide in the water. The blood pond was known as one of the ‘hells’ of Mt. Tateyama.
This hut is the oldest mountain hut in Japan, built 2-300 years ago. It is an important cultural site as there was thought to be a hut located here as early as the 12th century.
Stone Images of Buddha
In many places around the Murodo area you can see these Buddhist relics that were donated long ago by the visitors to the sacred mountain.
Tateyama Nature Conservation Center
This facility was established to study the rich nature of Tateyama and bring visitors into contact with it. Rare plants and animals from the Tateyama area are on display here.
Points of Interest – Outside of the Mikurigaike pond Course
A cavern that was used as a place to stay over 1000 years ago during the era of mountain asceticism. There is another cave that contains more than ten stone Buddha statues.
Jigokudani (Hell Valley)
The distinctive smell of sulfur hangs over this area where steaming clouds of water vapor erupt from a number of holes in the ground. There are 136 such places with hell themed names such as “Blacksmith’s Hell”.
There is a walking path around Jigokudani, but it is closed due to the danger of accidents caused by eruptions of volcanic gas.
Located at the top of the Mikurigaike course, this area displays the beautiful fall foliage of the Murodo plateau. It is possible to enjoy skiing here in the spring. A beautiful flower garden of alpine plants can be seen in the summer. In the autumn you can take in the rich colors of the red, yellow, orange and green leaves.
In the three mountain huts at Raichozawa you can enjoy a daytime hot spring bath for between 500 and 600 yen.
Climbing Mt. Tateyama
Hiking course from Murodo Terminal to Mt. Oyama (3,003 m), which is one of the summits of Mt. Tateyama. There is a shrine at the summit with panoramic views and the possibility of seeing Mt. Fuji on a clear day. See Walking Courses page.
Mt. Murodo View Point Course
Hiking course from Murodo Terminal to Mt. Murodo and Mt. Jodo. You can look down on the magnificent caldera from the view point. The most distinctive peak of Japan Alps, Mt. Yarigatake, is also visible. See Walking Courses page.