Tips for hiking Mt. Fuji

Hong Kong people like to travel to Japan.

Beside eating and drinking in Japan, you can also try to hike the highest mountain - Mt. Fuji. Don't think that only professional climbers can climb Mount Fuji. In fact, as long as you are in good physical condition, you can try Mt. Fuji if you have hiking experience.

The season of climbing Mt. Fuji is in Summer

Usually between mid-July and early September, depending on the weather conditions  . During this period, most of the facilities on the mountain remained open: for example, guest houses, souvenir shops, first aid stations or public transportation to the trail head..

Other than the climbing season mentioned above, only those who hold a mountaineering permit are allowed to climb. Winter climbing is even more difficult. Low temperature and snow make the climb becomes more danger. Thus, only professional climbers can climb. If you want to hike Mt. Fuji, it is more suitable to do it in summer.

Points to note - Mount Fuji hike

(1) Before the hike:

Most people will arrive at 5th Station by bus to begin the hike. Due to the effects of high altitude environments on the human body, sufficient rest and a good night’s sleep are highly recommended the night before the hike. If you are feeling unwell at any point before or during the hike, DO NOT push on.

(2) Hiking pace:

Hikers should ascend at a steady, unrushed pace. Sufficient rest should be taken at each mountain cabin along the way to allow the body to adapt to the high altitude.

(3) Rehydration:

It is recommended to drink an appropriate amount of water during the hike (a couple of mouthfuls every 15 mins) to avoid dehydration. Do not over bloat yourself with fluids, as this may negatively affect your physical performance.

(4) Beware of loose rock and scree: 

The trail to the summit of Mount Fuji is steep and covered in scree. Some scrambling will be required to complete the ascent. When on steep ground, be aware not to kick loose rock down the slope, as this creates a hazard to other hikers.

(5) Reducing knee strain:

Hikers should be mindful of the good techniques used to descend steep slopes. Travelling straight down a steep slope puts significant stress on the knees, which may lead to injury. It is best to travel down steep slopes in a “Z” pattern to prevent this

What to bring?

The highest mountain in Hong Kong is about 950m. Mt. Fuji is about 3774m, with more complicated landscape and weather changes. What you need to bring is very different from Hong Kong. Below are our suggestions.
gear list

Backpack

It’s common to takes two days and one night to complete Mt Fuji, a 20-40L backpack is good enough to carry all necessary gears. The backpack with supporting back frame allows the weight to be evenly distributed to the body, plus a belt to make you walk more comfortable. In case of sudden rain, the rain cover will keep your backpack dry.

Suitable Clothing

Most people choose to start at the 5th station (2305m). The climbing season is in summer, temperature is generally about 25 degrees. Most of the guest houses are located around 3000m, while the top of the mountain is 3776m. The temperature decreased by 6 degrees when ascending every 1000m. Therefore, the temperature at the top of the mountain will be at least 10 degrees lower than the 5th station and usually fall to 0 degrees at night.

We recommend that you bring a quick-drying and breathable T-shirt and warm clothing for hiking.

Base layer

Due to big difference in temperature, it is recommended to wear like an “onion”. Put on a quick-drying, breathable short-sleeved T-shirt as base layer and add clothes on top. In the evening, you can change the long-sleeved T-shirt and jacket to strengthen the insulation. T-shirt made with synthetic fiber can achieve fast-drying effect; t-shirt contain merino wool, very good material which resistant to odor.

Hat

Besides protecting from the UV, hat can also prevent cold wind from blowing directly to the head. In the mountains, the oxygen level is lower than the ground, keeping the head warm helps to soothe the uncomfortable response due to high altitudes.

Mid layer

Many people choose to reach the top in the early morning, and wait for the sunrise. They usually start at around 3am and wait for sunrise. High altitude plus cold wind, a warm jacket is very essential. Some people choose a  fleece or a down jacket which is packable. If it is rainy, add on a waterproof and windproof jacket to avoid cold wind chill effect.

Other Equipment

Trekking pole can help reduce knee pressure, especially when hiking downhill in gravel landscape. Many hikers like to go to the top of the mountain and wait for the sunrise. Usually start hiking at mid night, remember to bring the headlights to ensure safety.

sunrise

More Infromation

For more route detail and weather information, please go to their official website

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