During our visit in August with David and him family, they took us on an overnight trip to Hakone, near Mt. Fuji. Of course all this was new to us, but it was fascinating in its own right. It was most reminiscent of Yellowstone National Park in the US.
The first thing you see are the huge plumes of smoke coming out of the earth in several places. The chemistry of the smoke is such that the vegetation for many acres is brown, appearing dead. The smell is distinctively sulfuric and as you move across the area you come to a huge sulfur mining area.
As in many volcanic areas, hot springs are abundant here and apparently the hot water is piped down to the resort area below where it is used in the luxurious onsens, about which I have previously written.
In the small museum there was interesting info, mostly in Japanese. There was a lot of emphasis on landslides which apparently have brought lots of destruction over the years to the local areas. They displayed several engineering devices used to mitigated the landslide hazards.
One of the more interesting aspects of the area are the black, boiled eggs. Apparently chemicals in the hot springs react with something in egg shells and turns them black. There were abundant displays and vendors of these black eggs. I wasn’t that interested. A boiled egg tastes pretty much the same regardless of Easter dye or volcanic dye. But, there was a fairly long line to make this purchase.
This old world is an interesting place. The variety is amazing. G^d is indeed creative!