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Nagano

Hakuba

I’m on the slopes at Hakuba Cortina resort, taking a ski lesson with some elementary school kids. (more…)

GEKISAKA hill race – Tour de Utsukushigahara

The Tour de France?  No, the real tough hill climbing cycle event is the Tour de Utsukushigahara, with its gekisaka (檄坂 – severe slope).  The race is only 22km in distance, but ascends 1,270 metres up to Utsukushigara from Asama Onsen (in Matsumoto) – the first few hundred metres of the race ascendup an 18% incline.  (more…)