An Autumn Outing

It’s the truth about having a family. You just don’t get outside as much as you’d like. And though when the kids were younger I tried to get them to enjoy the outdoors, these days it’s only the walk to school that gets them outside. So my own outings are precious as they are spread far apart and last only three or four hours.

Last week, November 3rd was a holiday, and I stole away in the early hours and drove out to Nakatsukawa Keikoku deep in the mountains of Saitama. I had some targets in mind; however, as is often the case, I got sidetracked when I stopped to photograph the Nakatsu River and discovered a fascinating little ravine and gorge near the rest rooms. There were exposed section of diorite, and this intrigued me as this is now the second time I have found diorite in the mountains of Saitama. The mountains here are largely comprised of sedimentary rocks like chert and limestone and metamorphic rocks like schist. So, to discover exposed diorite – an igneous rock – sheds light on the geologic history of the area.

With most of my time used up here, I went on up the road a little further to find one more location where I could lose myself in photographing. I discovered a waterfall just off the road that had no proper access but could be reached with a little intrepidness.

Note: I am having a terrible time with this new WordPress. I have tried formatting the photographs a dozen times nearly and they come out poorly every time. The first photo is squished. The next three should be all the same size but they are not. I’m afraid this new WordPress is proving to be too frustrating to use.

Nakatsukawa – River and Canyon
Right near the restrooms at Onamesawa.
Looking up Onamesawa
The waterfall off the road at Aiharasawa.

4 responses to “An Autumn Outing

  1. Good to see you getting out again: the photos remind me what a rich variety of rocks one encounters in Japan, especially for a country everyone thinks of as “volcanic”. I wonder what the story is with that diorite? Is it simply the bedrock, or did it arrive in a more complex way …. ?

    • That’s a good question about the diorite. Pretty much all the rocks in the mountains of Saitama were sedimentary rocks along the coast following the Chuo Tectonic Line. The Chichibu City area used to be a bay. But the arrival of Izu shoved everything upwards and inwards. I suspect the diorites were deep bedrock that was uplifted along with the other rocks. But perhaps the uplifting also occurred before Izu came, when the Chuo Tectonic Line was still near the subduction zone of the Pacific Plate.

      I have many questions I want to ask!

  2. Great images! Especially like the first one. I’m finding I have a lot more time to get out exploring now that my sons have started junior high.

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