Japan in 10 days (part 3)

So after Kyoto, the sushi party, and church on Sunday we were all in the mood for some relaxation and enjoyment. Taye and Taryn enjoyed some well deserved rest hanging out at home while Ash and I hiked a small mountain nearby, Mt. Takao. It was a lot of fun with all the water around the trail. At one point (pictured above) the trail turns into a stairway of stepping stones in the river.
Monday afternoon we headed off to Karuizawa to see Joel and Sally. It's the perfect town to relax and just walk around. However, while we were there the fog set in pretty heavy (pictured below) and we all experienced, for the first time, a typhoon. In fact, Sally, Ash, and I experienced it from the local onsen. If you ever get a chance to go to an onsen in the rain, take it! It's the perfect mix of hot and cold, not to mention utterly beautiful. 

When we returned from the onsen, the electricity at home had shut off. Good thing Taye and Taryn are industrious; there was a nice candle lit room as we walked inside.

As foggy and rainy it was that day, the next day was just magnificent. The air was so clear and the waterfalls we visited overflowed with the abundance of water.

These waterfalls were super fun because of all the water. But I also learned that it takes 6 years for the water  here to come from its source (Mt. Asama) to here. Mt. Asama is a volcano so there's a lot of volcanic rock that's really porous the water goes straight through. And in turn, the water looks super clear.

Oh yeah, apparently there are black bears in the forest to watch out for. But doesn't this drawing looks so cute. I don't think it was the right choice for a sign saying there dangerous. He looks so sweet.

Here's a view of Mt. Asama

There was a beautiful view from the expressway this day too. So even though it wasn't very safe, we had to get out and document God's amazing creation unspoiled and probably untouched.

We enjoyed some R&R in Karuizawa as well as the blessed fellowship of Joel and Sally. Then it was time to return to Tokyo and head to the airport. Since the girls had an early flight before the trains start we arrived to the airport the night before and just slept on some chairs. Then in the am, we made our final farewells. See you in a few weeks!

I returned home again, home again, jiggity jig