■About the trail

AThe trail runs north to south from Mt Amamizu to Mt Madarao. Since the trail can be hiked in either direction, there is no designated starting location or “goal”.

ASince the trail meets with the road at many points, you don’t need to start from the southern or northern entrances. You can start hiking from wherever you like! The Shinetsu trail is divided into six sections, with each section taking roughly a day to hike. Most people hike one section at a time. Please consult our official map for further details.
Since the degree of difficulty varies depending on the section, we recommend that hikers who are not confident begin with section 2 or 3, choose a section that intersects the road, so that it is possible to hike a shorter distance.

AFor most people, the entire trail takes 6 days and 5 nights with accommodation, 5 days and 4 nights with a tent. We recommend you enjoy the trail leisurely and safely, staying at local accommodation along the trail. There are 6 camping sites along the trail.

【Recommended trekking plan with accommodation】
Arrival Day: From Tokyo or Kanazawa and so on to Iiyama
※You can take a bus from Iiyama Station to Madarao Kogen(Mt.Madarao Trailhead).
Day 1 : Mt.Madarao Trailhead ~ Mt.Madarao ~ Akaike Pond
Day 2 : Akaike Pond ~ Wakui
Day 3 : Wakui ~ Hotokegamine Trailhead
Day 4 : Hotokegamine Trail Head ~ Sekida Gap
Day 5 : Sekida Gap ~ Busuno Gap
Day 6 : Busuno Gap ~ Mt.Amamizu ~ Matsunoyama Trailhead
※You can take a taxi from Matsunoyama Trailhead to Morimiyanohara Station(JR Iiyama Line) or Matsudai Station(Hokuhoku Line).

【Recommended trekking plan with a tent】
Arrival Day: From Tokyo or Kanazawa and so on to Iiyama
※You can take a bus from Iiyama Station to Madarao Kogen(Mt.Madarao Trailhead).
Day 1 : Mt.Madarao Trailhead ~ Mt.Madarao ~ Akaike Pond Camping Site
Day 2 : Akaike Pond Camping Site ~ Katsuraike Pond Camoing Site
Day 3 : Katsuraike Pond ~ Sekida Gap ~ Green Pal Kougenso Camping Park
Day 4 : Green Pal Kougenso Camping Park ~ Nonomi Kogen Camping Site
Day 5 : Nonomi Kogen Camping Site ~ Mt.Amamizu ~ Matsunoyama Trailhead
※You can take a taxi from Matsunoyama Trailhead to Morimiyanohara Station(JR Iiyama Line) or Matsudai Station(Hokuhoku Line).
※HyperDia is a service which offers the routes and timetables of railway and aviation services in Japan.
Please fill the blank with:
From: Tokyo or Kanazawa
To: Iiyama, Morimiyanohara or Matsudai Station.
・Akaike Pond Camping Site: 3 min. from Akaike Pond
 Fee: Free ※We ask for a contribution of ¥1,000 per person for maintenance.
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
・Katsuraike Pond Camping Site
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
・Tondaira Camping Site: 15 min. from Hotokegamine Trailhead
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
・Green Pal Kougensou Camping Park: 15 min. from Sekida Gap
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
・Nonomi Kogen Camping Park: 10 min. from Misaka Gap
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
・Daigonji Kougen Camping Park: 15 min. from Matsunoyama Trailhead
 Fee: ¥1,500
 Reservation Tel 025-596-2994 Website www.daigonji.com

APeople of average fitness will have no trouble with the majority of trail. However, some sections have steep inclines and declines with elevation changes of less than 100 meters. We therefore recommend creating a hiking schedule and planning for plenty of time to complete the hike.
Summers can be particularly hot, so if you are not confident in your abilities we recommend avoiding any activities you think may be too difficult.
We recommend that first time hikers travel with a guide or join a tour.

APlease refer to this guide(http://www.s-trail.net/water_points.pdf).Watering holes are also marked on our official map. There may be cases where certain watering holes have dried up, so please make sure you bring enough water to last your whole trip. We also recommend you bring a water filter with you if you intend to drink from any natural water sources.

AAll facilities are marked on our official map. Please use them as much as possible. If there are no toilets available in your vicinity when you need one, please avoid going near any water sources, and make sure to take your toilet paper and other rubbish with you. We recommend bringing a portable toilet. Please be aware that toilet facilities will close for the winter at the end of October, in line with road closure schedules in the area.

AYou do not need to seek any special permission or pay any fees, however please be aware that the trail runs through private land and national forest. We ask that you refrain from removing any plants, mushrooms, and other flora from the trail. The trail is maintained by the Shinetsu Trail Club, a non-profit organization made up of volunteers. This maintenance requires a great deal of time, effort, and money. We ask that you contribute by helping with trail maintenance or making a donation.

AThe strength of your connection will depend on your individual service provider Please check the Shinetsu Trail Official Site for more information on the connectivity details of individual service providers. however you should be able to connect while on top of mountain ridges. Away from these ridges and in areas with complicated topography you may be unable to connect, even with the help of an antenna. If this occurs, you may be able to improve your connection by turning off and restarting your phone.

AIn order to protect the native ecosystem, we ask that you refrain from bringing your dog.

AThe Shinetsu trail was designed as a walking trail by the local government bodies and land owners in charge. Please refrain from riding mountain bikes on the trail.

ACamp fires are not permitted.

AHiking season runs from the end of June to the beginning of November for Through-hiking.
Exact dates vary depending on when the snow melts, but generally sections 1 and 2 open in mid-May, sections 3 and 4 open in early June, and sections 5 and 6 open in late June. Snow can begin falling from as early as late October to early November, and some roads leading to the trail close for winter. Please check the current condition of the trail before beginning your hike. Tent sites along the trail are also only open during certain periods, so make sure you confirm they will be open when planning your hike.

AIt varies each year, but usually there is still a fair amount of snow on sections 1 – 3 of the trail, with sections 4 – 6 under 2 to 3 meters of snow. Sign posts may be buried under snow, and trail maintenance will not have started. The trail is dangerous while snow remains, so we do not recommend trekking during this time.

AThe trail has some steep slopes, and these become very slippery during rainy season. Some parts of the trail also pass through swamp. Please be aware that during rainy season water levels may rise around these swamp areas, and that rocks and bridges running through them may be slippery.
Please make sure you wear water resistant rain gear, hiking shoes, leggings, trekking poles, and other wet weather gear to ensure a safe and enjoyable hike. If you are concerned about descending steep slopes, we recommend using your hands to stabilize yourself.

ADuring summer temperatures can reach above 30 degrees on the trail. Please be aware that the following parts of the track do not have much shade: approach trail to Mt Madarao and the southern entrance, section 1 of the trail between Mt Madarao and Mansaka pass, section 4 of the trail between the Tondaira camp site and Hotokegamine trail head, and between the Kozawa Pass and Mt Nabekura. While walking these sections you will be under direct sunlight for the majority of the time. Please take care not to get heat stroke, and stay hydrated.
Mosquitos and black flies tend to come out after it rains. We recommend taking extra precautions against insects.
Even when it reaches over 30 degrees in the heat of the day, mornings and nights can be quite cold. If you are camping at a tent site, we recommend bringing clothes you can layer based on changing temperatures (an outer coat, a light down jacket, a fleece, a T shirt that dries quickly, and underwear).
From early summer until autumn bees will also be particularly active. They can be territorial in protecting their hives, so approaching them is quite dangerous. Please be careful.
Please bring appropriate clothing and equipment. Make sure you wear a hat, as well as a towel or something to protect the back of your neck from the sun. Wear clothing that is breathable, sweat absorbent, and dries quickly.
There are few watering holes along the trail, so please make sure you bring with you at least 2 liters of water and foods that will replenish your salt and sugar intake. Take care to stay hydrated.
More information on watering holes can be found here (http://www.s-trail.net/water_points.pdf)

AThe sun sets very early during autumn. The forest trail begins getting dark around 4 pm, so please make sure you arrive and depart early.
At night and during the early mornings the temperature can get quite low. Temperatures can drop 10 degrees during cold fronts, and sometimes bring snow. Please take particular care of these cold fronts if you are staying at a tent site. By late October the tent sites can drop below freezing.
The chance of encountering wild animals is higher during autumn. We recommend wearing a bell if necessarily.
Wasps and bees are active from spring to autumn. Please be aware that they can be particularly aggressive between September and November. (Link -> Q&A on taking care around animals)

Many of the main mountain roads begin closing for the winter from the second week of November, meaning that mountain entrances to the trail cannot be accessed by car. When snow builds up on the roads emergency vehicles may be unable to access the trail. For your own safety, we recommend that you do not use the trail during the winter season. Furthermore, trail sign posts are removed in winter for sections of the trail that make up part of Madarao Kogen and Togari Onsen Ski resorts, so the risk of getting lost is high.

AThe Shinetsu Trail is only maintained when there is no snow, on the assumption that no one will be trekking in snowy conditions. We have some guided tours for hike only a part of the trail. Please understand that hiking during this time is considered winter mountaineering.
The Sekida Mountain Range, where the Shinetsu Trail is located, experiences some of the heaviest snowfall in the world. The northern end receives up to 8 meters of snow fall each year. Overhanging snow builds up on the spurs, and avalanches may occur. Because of this we do not recommend that inexperienced climbers attempt the hike for safety reasons. Tent sites also cannot be used during winter due to the buildup of snow. You will essentially have no support if you choose to hike during winter, so please exercise sound judgment.
It is possible to go snow shoeing on the parts of the Shinetsu Trail. Snow shoeing tours are run during the winter season.
・For information on the marked snow shoe trail around lake Nozomi please visit the Madarao Kogen Tourist Association homepage. "Madarao Kogen Yama-no-ie" also provides snow shoe rentals and free maps.
・For information on guided snow shoe tours through the Masa Pass and Mt Hanatate please contact "Nabekura Kogen Mori-no-ie". You can also register your details before hiking, purchase course maps, and rent snow shoes here.

■Accessing the Trail

AThe JR Iiyama Station is the closest station to the southern trail entrance at Mt Madarao. From Iiyama station you can take a bus or taxi to Madarao Kogen. The northern trail entrance at Mt Amamizu can be accessed from the JR Mori-Miyanohara Station. As there is no bus running between the station and Mt Amamizu, You can reach the trail either by walking the approach trail to the Sakaemura village entrance, or taking a taxi to Matsunoyama entrance.

※HyperDia is a service which offers the routes and timetables of railway and aviation services in Japan.
Please fill the blanks with:
From:Tokyo or Kanazawa
To: Iiyama, Morimiyanohara or Matsudai Station.

AThere are taxi ranks at JR Iiyama Station and Togari Nozawa Onsen Station. If you are coming from another station you will need to call the taxi company to send out a car. Taxis can be dispatched to each section of the trail.

AThe Shin-etsu Trail is not a circuit trail, so you may wish to drive in two cars, leaving one car at one end and starting the walk from the other if you are trekking with friends. There is also a company that provides a car pick-up service for a fee. If you stay with any of the 60-some Shin-etsu Trail Club affiliated accommodations, they may be able to give you rides to and from the nearest trail entrance. You can also catch a taxi.

■Maps and Equipment

AWe don’t recommend following the trail using signage alone. Please check the Shinetsu Trail official map before leaving and create a reasonable plan for yourself. Make sure you carry a compass and a map with you on the day, as well as any other equipment you would use for mountaineering.

A Please click here to view the official trail maps.

AIf you are interested in purchasing a copy of the official map, please send the Shinetsu Trail Club an email. Payments can be made via PayPal. Your items will be posted once payment has been confirmed. Prices are listed below.

・Shinetsu Trail Map 1 500 yen
・Shinetsu Trail Map 2 500 yen
・Shinetsu Trail Map 3 500 yen
・Postage fees
Within Japan 300 yen
Outside Japan Please check the site below for shipping details for specific countries
Express Mail Service(EMS) ※UP TO 500g

There are also maps available for purchase at the Shinetsu Shizenkyo Activity Center (located on the first floor of JR Iiyama Station) or at any of our Shinetsu Trail visitor centers.

AThe Shinetsu trail travels through undeveloped forest at an altitude of around 1000m, and the course has several sudden or steep inclines and descents. Becoming lost or falling are real dangers, so please make sure you prepare for your hike as if you were going mountaineering.
We recommend at the very least bringing the following items:
Trekking shoes, wet weather gear, clothes for warm and cool weather, a head lamp, food, extra rations, drinks (at least 2 liters in summer), the Shinetsu Trail official map, a compass, sun protection items, medicines, emergency supplies, a mobile phone, and spare batteries.

AWe recommend wearing hiking shoes that protect your ankles. The Shinetsu Trail has a lot of small inclines as well as a portion of the trail that climbs steeply up a ski slope. Much of the trail can be muddy, so waterproof hiking shoes are recommended.

ADuring summer most people require two liters of water a day. If you are camping on the trail, we recommend bringing a water filter. Please make sure you carry plenty of water, as some of the waterholes may have dried up.

AThe Shinetsu Shizenkyo Activity Center, located on the first floor of Iiyama Station, has a variety of trekking gear available for rent, including hiking shoes, backpacks, rainwear, hiking poles, tents, and blowtorches. Click here for more information (https://www.shinetsu-activity.jp/en/ ).


AWe do our best to promote lodges and inns that participate in Shin-etsu Trail Club activities, provide information about the trail to visitors, and help to plan great hiking trips. The majority of accommodation options provide guests with transportation to and from the trail, as well as the nearest train station. (Availability may vary with time and distance depending on a visitors desired route from their lodging to the site, so please ask at your lodge for details.)
For more information about lodging, please contact us. E-mail: office@s-trail.net

AThere are no emergency shelters. If you would like to sleep on the trail, please use one of our designated tent sites.
The Katsura Ike Tent Site has a simple shelter to protect against the rain. The Hikarigahara Kogen Campsite’s Green Pal Kogenso includes lodgings and bungalows along with tent sites.

■Tent Sites

AThere are six tent sites located along the Shinetsu Trail. Details about each site are listed below.
• Akaike Pond Camping Site: 3 min. from Akaike Pond
 Fee: Free ※We ask for a contribution of ¥1,000 per person for maintenance.
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
• Katsuraike Pond Camping Site
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
• Tondaira Camping Site: 15 min. from Hotokegamine Trailhead
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
• Green Pal Kougensou Camping Park: 15 min. from Sekida Gap
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
• Nonomi Kogen Camping Park: 10 min. from Misaka Gap
 Fee: ¥1,000 per person
 Reservation: E-mail office@s-trail.net
• Daigonji Kougen Camping Park: 15 min. from Matsunoyama Trailhead
 Fee: ¥1,500
 Reservation Tel 025-596-2994 Website www.daigonji.com

AThe tent sites usually open at the end of June or the beginning of July, after the snow has melted and site maintenance is complete. They can be used until the end of October. Snow may begin falling from early November and some of the mountain roads to the trail close for the winter, so tent sites will not be operational after this time.

ATent sites must be paid for in advance. Please contact the Shinetsu Trail Club (office@s-trail.net), and inform us of the dates and number of people you would like to reserve for. After we have confirmed your reservation please make your payment through PayPal before the reservation date.

AGenerally we prefer reservations to be made in advance, however if you would like to make a same day reservation you may be able to do so. Please contact our office by email.

APlease contact our office by email. Be aware that we are only able to make changes to reservations made for the current year, and cannot change bookings for the following year and beyond. We thank you for your understanding.

AUnfortunately we are unable to provide refunds, regardless of circumstances. We kindly ask for your understanding.

■Flora and Fauna on the Trail

APlease be careful of hornets, Japanese pit vipers, black bears, ticks, and other animals. See below for further details.

AHornets are at their most dangerous during summer and autumn, when they are building their nests. If you spot one flying close by, move quickly and quietly away to avoid
provoking it. If you find a nest, do not approach it. If you spot several hornets, there is a high probability that a nest is close by even if you cannot see one. Please do not approach the area.
If hornets are flying slowly they may be searching for food, so in this situation you should avoid making sudden movements and wait until it flies away. Waving it away with your hand may provoke it into stinging you.
Hornets are aggressive towards the color black, so try to wear bright colors on the trail. We also recommend avoiding strong perfumes and fragrant hair products, as they are attracted to the scent.
If you are stung by a hornet, pinch the area or use a poison extractor to remove as much of the poison as possible, then wash thoroughly with water.

AJapanese pit vipers, also known as Mamushi, can be seen on the trail and around the collars of tree branches from rainy season until the beginning of Autumn. They are distinguishable by their triangular head and distinctive pattern of blotches with dark borders and lighter centers. These vipers are not aggressive, and will generally not attack unless stepped or sat on.
If you are bitten, you will require first aid to remove the venom as quickly as possible, including with the use of a poison extractor. Please seek urgent medical treatment at a hospital. If you are unsure of the species that bit you, try to remember any distinguishing features and seek urgent medical treatment.

AAsian black bears live throughout the Sekida mountain ranges. It’s not uncommon to see bear claw marks on trees and excrement along the trail. These bears are generally afraid of humans and will run or hide if they sense that anyone is nearby. It is important to avoid running into them and surprising them, so make sure that bears are aware of your presence by frequently clapping your hands or speaking with a loud voice. This is particularly vital during periods with poor visibility such as early morning, dusk, and in fog, and during heavy wind, rain, or close to running water when it is difficult to hear each other.
Although it is unlikely that you will encounter a bear, there are usually multiple bear sightings each month. There is no need to be overly concerned, but to minimize your risk of encountering a bear in the wild we recommend taking measures such as wearing a bear bell in times of poor weather or visibility. We ask for your cooperation in making the trail a pleasant and safe area for hikers and animals alike.
If you encounter a bear on the trail, please contact our office.

ATick season is between spring and summer. Please follow the advice below to minimize your risk of being bitten.
• Wear long sleeves, pants, and other items of clothing that cover your skin. Tuck in your cuffs so that ticks cannot crawl inside your clothing.
• Don’t walk through thicket away from the track, and avoid sitting directly on the ground.
• Avoid wearing dark clothes. Ticks can be easily spotted on light colored clothing.
• After spending time outdoors, pat down your clothes and body to ensure there are no ticks on you.
• After returning home, shower straight away and wash well to remove any ticks that may have attached themselves. Wash all clothing.
• Wash all clothing soon after removing it, or place it in a nylon drawstring bag and tie it tightly.
• If you find a tick in your skin, please seek medical treatment. Do not try to remove it by force.

AAsian poison ivy and Japanese lacquer tree are poisonous, and if come into contact with can cause itchiness, inflammation, and blistering. Poison ivy is identifiable by its leaves, which grow in threes. It grows along the sides of the trail on the ground and around tree trunks.
Japanese lacquer trees are shrubs with straight trunks that can grow 5-6 meters tall. Their leaves grow straight out in all directions like an open umbrella. In autumn the leaves turn red and really stand out.
If you come into contact with these plants, please cool the inflamed area with water or a wet towel. Be careful not to touch the inflamed area against other parts of your skin as it will spread. Please take particular care not to touch your eyes or scratch the inflamed area. If you have access to an antihistamine, apply it to the irritated skin. Seek urgent medical attention if symptoms persist.

Nabekura Kogen Mori-no-Ie. 1571-15, Teruoka, Iiyama, Iiyama-city, Nagano, 389-2601.
TEL:0269-69-2888 FAX:0269-69-2288 E-mail: office@s-trail.net
エコツーリズム特別賞 森林管理所と協定・森林技術交流発表会 観光交流推進協議会