Revisiting the Road to Imabari: The View from Mt. Takanawa
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Hazy Sunset from a Kilometer Up from the summit of Mt. Takanawa (高縄山), north-western Shikoku -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/8000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Hazy Sunset from a Kilometer Up
from the summit of Mt. Takanawa (高縄山), north-western Shikoku

This post is a continuation of “Revisiting the Road to Imabari: Stops #1 and #2”, which itself follows on from “On The Road to Imabari”, about the first day of our short trip to Imabari (Ehime, Japan) earlier this month.

However, unlike the two earlier posts which sported all kids of pretty photos, including ten that I thought were good enough to present as desktop backgrounds, this post has pretty much nothing but photographically-atrocious images. But since my blog is a “stuff I want to share” blog, and not a photo blog, I have no qualms posting bad photos if they help tell a story, and today's post is an example. (I just want to say that up front, because I'd be embarrassed if anyone thought that I thought these were good pictures.)

Anyway, we left the previous installment at the top of a short mountain overlooking the Japanese Inland Sea between Honshu and Shikoku, the largest and smallest of Japan's four main islands. We continued south over the shimanami kaido — all the islands and bridges to Shikoku — then continued further south within Shikoku for another 45 minutes to Mt. Takanawa (高縄山), a 986m peak that prior research on Google Earth led me to believe would offer easy access and stunning views. We decided to give it a try when it looked like we could make it for the sunset.

The road to the top was much less substantial than I had assumed for a place that offered such a commanding view, but we luckily did not meet any other traffic, so didn't have to worry about trying to figure out how two cars could pass each other where there was barely room for one.

Summit Parking about as crowded as it got -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm — 1/500 sec, f/13, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Summit Parking
about as crowded as it got

At the top there's a small parking lot a bit from the top, and at the top a large communications antenna. In the photo below, taken from the same spot as the photo above, you can see a small shrine in the foreground, the antenna to the right, and a three-story tall observation platform at the left...

Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm — 1/640 sec, f/13, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos

From the top of the observation platform you get an impressive view of the tower...

Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm — 1/500 sec, f/18, ISO 4500 — map & image datanearby photos

But inexplicably, when you look the other way to see the view the platform is ostensibly there to provide, you're faced with:

Ugly Utility Poles Even Here! -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14 mm — 1/500 sec, f/18, ISO 900 — map & image datanearby photos
Ugly Utility Poles Even Here!

It just boggles the mind that they couldn't put these seemingly-useless poles somewhere other than exactly smack dab in the way. There was plenty of space to move the observation platform over a few meters, or perhaps make it higher. Anyway, I should concentrate on being appreciative of such accommodating access to the view, spoiled or not, so with equal measures of extreme leaning and selective composition, I excluded the poles from other shots.

West-Coast Town of Yanagihara (柳原) -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm — 1/1600 sec, f/13, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
West-Coast Town of Yanagihara (柳原)

Turning north, we could see the six large towers supporting the bridges of the final leg of the shimanami kaido we'd driven up on, and at the far right the edge of the town of Imabari...

Bridge to the North -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/800 sec, f/8, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Bridge to the North

It was extremely hazy, so to get even the minimal quality of the photo above, I had to heavily process the original in Lightroom.

We made good time getting there, so we had 45 minutes to kill before the sunset, so we retreated down the mountain 300 meters to the quiet little Takanawa-ji Temple (高輪寺)...

Entrance To The Takanawa-ji Temple Ehime Prefecture, Japan -- Takanawa Temple (高縄寺) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 24 mm — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 1400 — map & image datanearby photos
Entrance To The Takanawa-ji Temple
Ehime Prefecture, Japan

Flanking the entrance was a pair of caged wooden statues...

Temple Guardian? -- Takanawa Temple (高縄寺) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 24 mm — 1/60 sec, f/2.5, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Temple Guardian?

It's not uncommon for temple entrances to include a pair of large wooden statues like this, though like this they're almost always hidden behind protective screening that make them difficult to see and almost impossible to photograph. I think I've had them on my blog only one other time, in this photo from a couple of years ago.

Simple Courtyard -- Takanawa Temple (高縄寺) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 24 mm — 1/320 sec, f/5.6, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Simple Courtyard

I bet those cherry blossoms are stunning right about now. The building in the center sported the cute puppy and friend seen in the earlier post.

I chatted a bit with whom I assume was the main priest (or whatever you call them at a Buddhist temple). He'd spent six years at the Daigo Temple not far from my house in Kyoto. What a change.... it wouldn't surprise me if the Daigo Temple gets more visitors in five minutes during high cherry-blossom season than the Takanawa Temple gets all year. The lack of crowds certainly sounds appealing.

Looking Back to the Car -- Takanawa Temple (高縄寺) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 @ 50 mm — 1/400 sec, f/1.4, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Looking Back to the Car

Back up at the summit, the light was getting redder and the shadows deeper...

Bridge 15 Miles Away at 380mm again, heavily processed in Lightroom to cut the haze -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Sigma “Bigma” 50-500mm OS @ 380 mm — 1/400 sec, f/6.3, ISO 1100 — map & image datanearby photos
Bridge 15 Miles Away at 380mm
again, heavily processed in Lightroom to cut the haze
Same Bridge at 50mm -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 @ 50 mm — 1/4000 sec, f/1.4, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Same Bridge at 50mm

Another look toward the setting sun at Yanagihara Village, I couldn't help but wonder again how easily it could be wiped out by a tsunami....

Sloping Gently To The Sea -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Sigma “Bigma” 50-500mm OS @ 140 mm — 1/400 sec, f/9, ISO 1250 — map & image datanearby photos
Sloping Gently To The Sea

Looking away from the sun, having the light immediately behind you made for interesting shadows (and a color-balance nightmare)...

Looking East -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Sigma “Bigma” 50-500mm OS @ 340 mm — 1/200 sec, f/18, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Looking East

The sun set for Imabari City long before it did for us, so by now it had fallen into darkness...

Imabari City 12 miles away -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Sigma “Bigma” 50-500mm OS @ 290 mm — 1/640 sec, f/6.3, ISO 2000 — map & image datanearby photos
Imabari City
12 miles away

The tall building right of center is the Imabari International Hotel, which is were we stayed for the two nights of our trip. (If you look carefully you can see Imabari Castle on the coast a bit to its right, but we didn't visit it on this trip.)

Finally, the sun started getting close to the horizon...

Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 @ 50 mm — 1/640 sec, f/6.3, ISO 720 — map & image datanearby photos
Cheezy Sunset Shot -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 24 mm — 1/640 sec, f/6.3, ISO 1800 — map & image datanearby photos
Cheezy Sunset Shot
Subdued (But Slightly Odd) Sunset it really did have a weird halo-ish feature above/around it -- Mt. Takanawa (高縄山) -- Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/5000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Subdued (But Slightly Odd) Sunset
it really did have a weird halo-ish feature above/around it

Finally we made it to the hotel, and after a day of being mostly cooped up in the car, Anthony could “relax” in his own way...

Bed Time in one sense of the phrase -- Imabari International Hotel -- Imabari, Ehime, Japan -- Copyright 2011 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 @ 24 mm — 1/250 sec, f/1.4, ISO 560 — map & image datanearby photos
Bed Time
in one sense of the phrase

All 2 comments so far, oldest first...

If Asian art history classes taught me anything, I think those temple guardians are called Ungyo (the one with his mouth closed) and Agyo (the one with his mouth opened), two Buddhist bodyguards.
I just thought I would mention that. :”D

— comment by AVT on April 19th, 2011 at 10:51am JST (6 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink

Sir!
Just randomly found your website while doing some searches for images relating to EXIF data. Thanks for posting all these images with data riddled EXIF fields, it warms the soul. When I get this project wrapped up I’ll delve into some of your other blog posts.
Lateron, stu

— comment by Stu on April 20th, 2011 at 10:28am JST (6 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink
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