Snow Monkeys at Jigokudani in winter time

Sightseeing / Winter Activities / Hot Springs
Wed, Jan 16, 2013
Snow Monkeys at Jigokudani in winter time

Jigokudani Yaenkoen (地獄谷 野猿公苑) is located in Northern Nagano (Yamanouchi town) near Shibu Hot Spring.

During winter, you have to take the trail from Kanbayashi Onsen to Jigokudani since the road from Shibu Onsen is closed due to heavy snow.
To get to Yaen koen, it takes about at least 30 minutes on foot, yet it is depends on the condition of the trail.  This mountain pass is narrow, unpaved, often covered with snow and full of steps, it is almost impossible to follow by wheelchair.

On the way to Kanbayashi Onsen, the drive way was covered with snow and a bit slippery.  Snow tires are “must” item to reach Jigokudani area.

It is so beautiful to explore winter forest, but you need to prepare warm outfit as well as snow boots.

It was quite a bit of walk from Kanbayashi Onsen through the forest pass way, yet if you are lucky, be able to encounter Japanese Serow (goat- antelope recognized on IUCN Red List for least concern mammals) on the way to the park.

Or you may see some monkeys interrupting some tourists enjoying Onsen Rotenburo (outside bath) at a B & B called Korakukan.

This time, my friends from Salt Lake City (Matsumoto’s sister city!) U.S.  fully enjoyed watching these adorable snow monkeys relaxing in the warm onsen and playing all over the park.

Though it was very cold in deed, it was worth visiting this interesting and amusing wild park in the deep forest.

More detail ⇒ Jigokudani Yaen Koen