Tateyama Ski Trip

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Owen goes down the hill!

I am finally starting to feel a bit better after last week’s influenza. I was well enough to accompany the students on our school’s annual cross country ski trip. The students learned how to cross country ski at the Tateyama National Youth Outdoor Learning Center. It is just outside of the Tateyama national park, which is located on the far north eastern part of the Japanese alps. The park is famous for the giant snow walls that tourists visit each spring.

It has not been a great year for the skiing business on the main island of Honshu because of a lack of snow. Fortunately for us there was enough snow to be able to ski and students really had fun throwing snowballs, making snowmen, etc. Snow brings out the kid in everyone! The government run center is set up for school groups and so it was a perfect place to bring a large group of adolescents.

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The view from the center looking across the river valley.

This was my first visit to the Nagano / Japanese Alps region and I hope to explore more of the region during my stay in Japan. Below is the view of the mountains from the city of Toyama on the Sea of Japan coast. Of course the highlight for me was spending time with Owen. He gets along so easily with others and is such a positive young man. It was a pleasure to watch him interact with the other students on the trip. A big thank you to Baba sensei for organizing the trip and allowing me to be a chaperone.

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