[Kanto Touring Spot] [Saitama Prefecture] Bike trip to Nakatsu Gorge! A solo trip on a Harley through a valley with strangely shaped rocks representing Oku-Chichibu

Hello, this is _hiroyuki.ta. This time, we will be reporting on a Harley-Davidson tour to Nakatsu Gorge, a famous spot for autumn leaves in Chichibu City, Saitama Prefecture. Nakatsu Gorge is a deep V-shaped valley that is representative of Oku-Chichibu, and you can enjoy the wonderful scenery of red and yellow trees coloring the valley with sheer cliffs up to 100 meters high and strangely shaped rocks. Particularly famous is the maple tree that is over 300 years old and is called Joro Momiji,'' located in front of the Mochioke Tunnel. There is a legend that a long time ago, when the leaves were in full bloom, two attractive men and women suddenly appeared and danced around this tree. After that, the two disappeared, but the two maple trees that were there overlapped with their charming figures, and the story goes that they have since been calledJorō Momiji.” This tree stands out in the valley with its bright red color.


What is Nakatsukyo?


Nakatsu Gorge is a valley located in the northeastern part of Oku-Chichibu in Chichibu City, Saitama Prefecture (formerly Otaki Village, Chichibu District). This valley stretches for approximately 10km along the Nakatsugawa River, and is designated as a scenic spot by the prefecture. The Nakatsugawa River is a tributary of the Arakawa River, forming a deep V-shaped valley carved into the 150-million-year-old geological formation called the Chichibu Belt. Because this stratum is made of hard rock, it is resistant to erosion, and due to the rugged terrain, many natural forests remain untouched by humans. Therefore, many autumn-leaved trees such as maple and rowan can be seen. Also, in winter, you can see winter scenery such as ice walls and icicles.

Route to Nakatsu Gorge

This time, I toured from central Tokyo to Nakatsu Gorge on a Harley-Davidson FLSB Sport Glide. The starting point is Ningyocho-dori/Suitengū-dori. From here, take Route 316 and take the Shuto Expressway City Loop Line/C1 from Takaracho IC. From Takebashi JCT, transfer to Shuto Expressway No. 5 Ikebukuro Line/Route 5, and from Bijogi JCT, enter Kanetsu Expressway/Kanetsu Expressway. Exit the Kanetsu Expressway/Kanetsu Expressway at Hanazono IC and enter Saikai Kaido/West Kanto Connecting Road/National Route 140. From here, take National Route 299 and enter Prefectural Route 43. From Prefectural Route 43, return to National Route 140 and enter Prefectural Route 210. Finally, continue straight on Chichibu City Road Otaki Trunk Route 17 and arrive at Nakatsu Gorge.

The entire trip takes approximately 3 and a half hours and the distance is approximately 160 km. Along the way, you will need to use toll roads such as the Shuto Expressway and the Kanetsu Expressway, which will cost approximately 3,000 yen. Be careful not to speed too much on the highway. Also, be sure to drive safely to avoid traffic jams and accidents. You can enjoy the scenery while driving on national and prefectural roads, but please be careful as there are many curves and slopes. Also, the temperature can vary greatly, so don’t forget to bring warm clothing and rainwear.

Highlights of Nakatsukyo


When you arrive at Nakatsu Gorge, first enjoy the beauty of the valley. There is a promenade along the valley where you can walk and admire the autumn leaves. The best time to see the autumn leaves is from late October to early November, but the colors begin to change from mid-October. One of the most famous trees in the valley is a maple tree called “Jōro Momiji,” which is over 300 years old. This tree is in front of the Mochioke tunnel. It turns bright red and stands out in the valley. Near this tree,

There are many other things to see as you walk along the valley. For example, in the winter, a dynamic ice wall over 50 meters in height appears on the rock wall at a place called “Deai”. It is known as the Nakatsugawa Ice Wall and is a popular winter spot along with Misotsuchi Icicles. A place called “Nakafutari” is a scenic spot where you can see the entire valley. The sight of trees dyed in red and yellow coloring the valley is a sight to behold.

Nakatsukyo Motorcycle Parking Lot

Nakatsukyo does not have a dedicated parking lot for motorcycles, but there are several parking lots for general vehicles. . Also, please note that there is no parking lot near “Jorou Momiji”.


This time, we are reporting on a Harley-Davidson tour to Nakatsu Gorge in Saitama Prefecture. Nakatsu Gorge is a valley that represents Okuchichibu, and the beauty of the autumn leaves is spectacular. In particular, the maple tree, which is over 300 years old and is called “Jorou Momiji,” is a must-see. There is a promenade along the valley where you can walk and admire the autumn leaves. You can also try local specialties such as dengaku and shiruko made with Nakatsugawa potatoes. Riding a Harley-Davidson allows you to travel in comfort while enjoying the scenery and the breeze. However, please be sure to drive safely on expressways and national highways. Also, the temperature can vary greatly, so don’t forget to bring warm clothing and rainwear.

The above was sent to you by _hiroyuki.ta. Next time we look forward to!

*”Nakatsu Gorge” is called “Nakatsu Gorge” in English.