East of Hokkaido (III)
I took the first train from Kushiro to the Akan National Park, again on the Kushiro line. It was very early.
Got off the train at Kawayu-onsen station and started to walk to the town, three km away.
A sign by the road was pointing at a shortcut through the woods. I followed the path for some 20 minutes until the snow was too soft and deep to continue.
Besides, some fresh footprints now and then were making me nervous. They could be deers, but was I sure they weren't small bears? I wasn't, and it was 7 AM and not a human soul around.
I passed by mount Io-zan, an active volcano. The hot spring of Kawayu comes from here.
There are some impressive fumes at the base of the mountain, at ground level. The smell of sulphur was very strong, and the noise was like... well, like a broken gas pipe. The temperature was still below zero, though.
This picture was taken from the same spot with a 300mm lens. Very useful, that zoom!
Kawayu town, with its steaming hot spring flowing through, looked very quiet that morning. One of the first things I found was this igloo, built for the tourists to take photos.