Read Part 1 here beforehand, if you like.
The next morning we woke up early as we booked a drift ice walk at 0630am. Fortunately, the weather was way better than the expected rain..
After changing into the provided dry suits we jumped right in!
Afterwards we still had some time to kill until our bus departed at 0940. We decided to take a walk around Utoro – this time in daylight!
We an amazingly high temperature of 9.9degrees that morning..
But the wind was quite strong, making for some nice cloud formations..
We then hopped onto the bus taking us back to Shiretoko-shari and took the train to Kawayu Onsen. The trains in remote areas are usually one-wagon trains, but this train featured something new (or old?):
At Kawayu Onsen we got onto another bus taking us around the Lake Akan National Park. The bus is actually pretty cheap with a 2 day pass only costing 1500jpy!
The first stop was going to be Mt Iou. The sulphur smell gave away what we were going to see before we arrived at the mountain..
The bus stopped for about 15min to allow for enough time for everyone to walk up to the mountain!
Of course there was also a small shop nearby selling Onsen boiled eggs.
Our next stop was Lake Kussharo, not far from Mt Iou. Most of the lake is covered in ice, but as there are hot springs nearby some hot water flows into the lake. Much to the delight of the swans..
Apparently the swans come all the way from Russia to enjoy the Onsen during the winter!
Even though we only had about 30mins at Lake Kussharo (definitely take the car next time!), we did make it into the Onsen as well for a short time :)!
Our next stop was Lake Mashu which was a fair bit away, but offered a very rewarding view. We were kind of lucky as the Lake is often covered by thick fog..
And after a long day, we arrived at our Hotel in the very typical, deserted Japanese Onsen city.. I am going to post some pictures of that another time :)
View from the window in the direction of Lake Kussharo..
Thanks for stopping by!