Famed for its elegant symmetrical cone, Mount Fuji is actually an active stratovolcano last erupting in December 1707. First climbed by a monk in 663, the sacred mountain is beset upon by an annual pilgrimage to climb its peak during the short two and a half month climbing season. Visitor numbers have spiralled over the years and more so recently since its official inclusion as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site in 2013. The volcano straddles Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectures which means plenty of buck passing about how to deal with the accumulated garbage and effectively manage the fragile mountain ecosystem. I had the good fortunate to climb Mount Fuji back in 2000 and hope the following run-down provides some new insights around this majestic mountain.
# 1. Buddhist monk christens Kyoto as the 19th Prefecture.
# 2. Starting back in 2005, steps were taken to clean up the mountain.
# 3. Training playground for the hardiest of climbers.
# 4. A short window of opportunity.
# 5. Not for the geographically challenged.
# 6. Ensure to bring plenty of fluid to hydrate.
# 7. A long shot of visibility prevails.
# 8. The Meiji restoration lifts the ban.
# 9. Best enjoyed in the company of thousands.
# 10. Attempts to stem the tide through punitive fees.