Views of Japan~ What Yuka sees in daily life (11)

Oze National Park: The best place I've ever been

I lived in Gunma Prefecture almost a year and half for my job until I left for Tokyo last September. While I was there, I always wanted to go to Oze National Park, but I used to live in Maebashi, which is pretty far away, so I never had a chance to get there. I finally asked my parents to go with me to Oze. Oze, which straddles Gunma, Fukushima, Niigata and Tochigi prefectures, is famous for mizubasho (Asian skunk cabbage) flowers this time of year. There is a well known song about Oze and its mizubasho titled "Natsuno Omoide" (Memories of summer).

On Sunday (June 1), my parents and I began walking through the park from Hatomachi Toge entrance in Gunma Prefecture around 5 a.m. We walked about 20 km, taking breaks sometimes for snacks, drinks, photos, and chatting. It took us about six hours to complete our hike.

The scenery of fresh green, clear water in the mountain waterlands, skies, bird singing and of course, mizubasho—everything we saw and felt there was just perfect. The entire experience at Oze was one of breathtaking beauty.