Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Yakushima In Pictures

In vague order, here are some of the things I've seen on Yakushima.
 Where the fish fly, so do my spirits. This is the boat I took from Kagoshima.

First impressions.

Shortly after arriving at the campsite the famous Yakushima monkeys made their presence felt.

I was surprised to have all the images I held of the island in my imagination met with their uncannily similar physical counterparts in such a short time after my arrival.

I was dwelling on this when the Yakushika (Yakushima deer) turned up in droves.

A carefully angled photograph to show the campsite in a good light.

Sunset on one side of the peninsula.


Sunrise on the opposite side of the peninsula.

My walk on the Yakusando trail the next day.

About 7 hours of this, all silent apart from the whistle of startled deer.
Part of the now-abandoned forest railway.

Ryujin sugi (dragon cedar), with obligatory where's wally pose.

Back down the mountain in the afternoon.

I've mentioned to a few people that I think Yakushima is where twin peaks would have been filmed in Japan.
It's a combination of the great beauty and awe-inspiring darkness of the natural surroundings and the fascinating socio-economical situation arising from the once-huge industries of logging and fishing, and the waves of employment that followed Yakushima's forests gaining world heritage status in 1993.
Add into that a population peppered with some incredible characters. Yesterday in 40 minutes I was picked up on my way to the capital by a Shizuoka farmer/Tokyo DJ, an English teacher from Yorkshire and a campsite owner who spent 6 years in a Thai prison for selling heroin. A rich mix. I've said enough for now!


  1. second to last photo looks like a bear crying with a long white mustache. just a small observation. x

  2. Yeah that looks great and all, but I'm sat in a room in rainy Oxford trying to write an essay. I think we know who the real winner is here...

  3. Hi Mike,
    Glorious photos, you should really copyright them because they could be used by many media outlets! Just a thought... at least put your initials on them! Or enter a photography competition or better still have an exhibition... they are wonderful... great to hear about all the people you are meeting... and nice to see photos of some of them...

    Lots of love Mum xx