Hello, this is _hiroyuki.ta. This time, we will introduce a touring to “Oshidori Hidden Falls” in Chino City, Nagano Prefecture. I set off from central Tokyo on a Harley Sports Glide (FLSB) and enjoyed a four-and-a-half hour tour. Oshidori Hidden Falls is a sliding waterfall located at the uppermost reaches of Yokoya Valley, where chatubomi moss, which grows in acidic water, grows in clusters, creating a beautiful contrast between the water, greenery, and rocks. So let’s go right away!
What is Oshidori Hidden Falls?
Oshidori Hidden Falls is a waterfall located in Toyohira, Chino City, Nagano Prefecture, at an altitude of approximately 1,300 meters. This waterfall is a mountain stream created by the river Shibukawa carving the bedrock, and the drop is about 10 meters, but the length is about 100 meters. The name of this waterfall originates from the legend that in the past, there were Oshidori who lived in this area and talked about their love in the sound of water. Oshidori is a bird that is said to bring good marriages, so this waterfall is also popular as a power spot for matchmaking and marital harmony.
Route to Oshidori Hidden Falls
I rode my bike from central Tokyo to Oshidori Hidden Falls. Below is the route I took.
- From central Tokyo, take the Shuto Expressway and enter the Chuo Expressway.
- Proceed west on the Chuo Expressway and exit at the Suwa Minami Interchange.
- Proceed north on National Route 299 (Märchen Road).
- Turn right at the Tateshina Kogen Entrance intersection and enter Prefectural Route 40 (Tateshina Kogen Line).
- Turn left at the traffic light in front of Mishaka Pond and go to the Meiji Onsen entrance.
- From the Meiji Onsen entrance, walk down the promenade behind the Meiji Onsen Ryokan to Oshidori Hidden Falls.
The main route for this route is the Chuo Expressway and National Route 299. The Chuo Expressway is the main expressway from Tokyo to Nagano, and along the way you can see beautiful scenery such as Mt. Fuji and Mt. Yatsugatake. National Route 299 is a sightseeing route called the Fairy Tale Road, which includes lakes such as Lake Suwa and Lake Shirakaba, as well as famous waterfalls such as Tateshina Falls and Otome Falls. In addition, the temperature on this route decreases as the altitude increases, so it is cool and comfortable even in summer.
Highlights of Oshidori Hidden Falls
The highlight of Oshidori Hidden Falls is its beautiful appearance. The waterfall flows down the bedrock, and the blue of the water, the green of the moss, and the red of the rocks stand out vividly. In particular, the moss is a rare type called Chatubomi moss, which can only grow in acidic water. Chatsubomi moss is a mysterious plant that swells and turns green when water flows through it, and shrinks and turns red when the water stops. At this waterfall, you can see the color change depending on the flow of the water as the Chatubomi moss grows in clusters.
Oshidori Hidden Falls motorcycle parking lot
Oshidori Hidden Falls does not have a dedicated motorcycle parking lot, but you can use the nearby Mishaka Pond parking lot. Mishaka Pond is a pond that served as the motif for Japanese painter Yumeji Takehisa’s “Water Mirror”, and offers a beautiful view of the surrounding nature reflected in the calm surface of the water. The parking lot at Mishaka Pond is free to use, but it can only accommodate about 30 cars. Also, please note that in winter, the road may be closed due to snow or ice.
It takes about 10 minutes on foot from Mishaka Pond to Oshidori Hidden Falls.
This time, we introduced a tour to Oshidori Hidden Falls in Chino City, Nagano Prefecture. Oshidori Hidden Falls is a long and beautiful mountain stream waterfall, and is a rare spot where chatubomi moss grows in clumps. It also has cultural value associated with the works of Japanese painters Kaii Higashiyama and Yumeji Takehisa.
This waterfall has different charms depending on the season, as it is cool in the summer and freezes over in the winter, creating a magical scenery. I went this time in the summer, but I would like to go again in the winter. Oshidori Hidden Falls is a wonderful spot where you can feel the beauty of nature and the depth of culture. When you go by bike, you can enjoy the scenery along the way, and you’ll be even more impressed at your destination. Please take a bike trip to Oshidori Hidden Falls!
Finally, the English word for Oshidori Kakushi Falls is “Oshidori Kakushi Falls.” Oshidori means “mandarin duck,” kakashi means “hidden,” and taki means “falls.” Don’t you think it sounds nice in English? See you again for the next touring report!