First Taste of Kyoto’s Fall-Foliage Season, 2017 Edition
Typical Kyoto Parking Lot Soren-ji Temple (宗蓮寺), Kyoto Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 56mm — 1/320 sec, f/6.3, ISO 1100 — map & image datanearby photos
Typical Kyoto Parking Lot
Soren-ji Temple (宗蓮寺), Kyoto Japan

I went out for a short photo jaunt with Damien, Paul, and Adrian yesterday to check out some of the fall color in the mountains of northwest Kyoto.

First we went through the rural Kumagahata area that was hard hit by a typhoon last month...

Still in a State of Disarray but the road is clean and utilities are working -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 48mm — 1/100 sec, f/5.6, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Still in a State of Disarray
but the road is clean and utilities are working

The road surface is back to normal; compare to this typical scene just after the typhoon.

One imagines that the mountainside will have to be thinned considerably before the utility wires are put up permanently -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 60mm — 1/250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 3200 — map & image datanearby photos
One imagines that the mountainside will have to be thinned considerably
before the utility wires are put up permanently
Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 3600 — map & image datanearby photos
Odd Discovery -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1000 — map & image datanearby photos
Odd Discovery

I ride my bicycle on this road often (it's part of the Kyoto Heart Loop, for example) but had never noticed this weird bit of brick construction. At first I thought it might be the leftover foundation of some long-gone building, but then noticed the plaque embedded within:

隧道 十三石山 -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 66mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
隧道
十三石山

I was left grasping at straws to understand this. The characters are much more easily understood in this photograph than it was at the time, but even then I correctly identified the bigger characters as 隧道 written right-to-left, the old way to write tunnel. I'd seen it only once before, as described here. But there was no evidence of a tunnel nor that there ever might have been... it was odd, and I was left questioning whether I was mixing up my kanji.

However, searching the web for 「十三石山隧道」 brings up all kinds of stuff, including this very helpful post that describes a system that brings water from the river starting at a point farther up the river (here), along a twisty but gently-sloping path that ends up about 1.3km due south to this point just above a hydroelectric power plant built in 1908. By this point the road has descended about 50m (160') of elevation, but the water has not, so now at the power plant it can plummet down to drive the turbines.

The non-tunnel words on the plaque, 十三石山, apparently refers to the nearby mountain just to the west.

I find this old stuff to be really fascinating.

Too Much -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 50mm — 1/200 sec, f/4, ISO 250 — map & image datanearby photos
Too Much

As we continued deeper into the mountains, we stopped from time to time to enjoy the fall colors...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/4, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Helpful Sign -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1250 — map & image datanearby photos
Helpful Sign
Kokumozen-ji Temple Entrance (高雲禅寺) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Kokumozen-ji Temple Entrance
(高雲禅寺)

I'd been meaning to check this place out; the big circular stone is hard to miss when flying by on a bicycle.

Small Tree on Fire -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/400 sec, f/2.5, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Small Tree on Fire
Old Roof Tiles discarded off to one side -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/2.5, ISO 3200 — map & image datanearby photos
Old Roof Tiles
discarded off to one side

The temple building itself was all closed up, but the adjacent cemetery was photogenic in some lovely light...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/2.5, ISO 2200 — map & image datanearby photos

Nearby back on the main street was a wall with lots going on...

Visually-Busy Wall -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 52mm — 1/200 sec, f/5.6, ISO 1000 — map & image datanearby photos
Visually-Busy Wall

With so much going on, I though that I should be able to do something with it, but in the end it's the photo above that I like the best.

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 38mm — 1/160 sec, f/8, ISO 1400 — map & image datanearby photos
Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/30 sec, f/8, ISO 400 — map & image datanearby photos
Nearby Bucket -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/2000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Nearby Bucket

We eventually made our way to the Shimyouin Temple (志明院), deep in the mountains to the north....

View from the Parking Lot Shimyo-in Temple (志明院) -- Shimyo-in Temple (志明院) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
View from the Parking Lot
Shimyo-in Temple (志明院)

I first wrote about this temple six years ago in Kyoto’s Shimyouin Temple: Exceedingly Remote, Bashful, and Serene, and I took this hard-edged black and white photo of Paul there, but for the most part this place doesn't appear on my blog much because photography isn't allowed at most of it. One used to be allowed to bring a camera or a lunch box, but people were just too rude, so about 40 years ago they stopped letting people bring anything (including cameras) in.

We then moved on to the famous Ochiba Shirne (Fallen-leaf Shrine) that has been on my blog many times...

Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 38mm — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 1800 — map & image datanearby photos
Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社)

It's not quite at it's peak yellow carpet level yet, as it was when this shrine first appeared on my blog seven years ago in Carpet of Yellow at the Iwato Ochiba Shrine, Deep in the Mountains of North-West Kyoto, but it's still lovely.

Damien at the Entrance -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/2.5, ISO 400 — map & image datanearby photos
Damien at the Entrance

In a single-frame re-enactment of this wigglegram from five years ago.

Constant Flurry of Falling Leaves -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/2.5, ISO 320 — map & image datanearby photos
Constant Flurry of Falling Leaves
Adrian -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 1600 — map & image datanearby photos
Adrian
Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 31mm — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 2000 — map & image datanearby photos
Helping Hand -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 720 — map & image datanearby photos
Helping Hand
Dedication to the Shot -- Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 42mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1100 — map & image datanearby photos
Dedication to the Shot

The hedge near the entrance is apparently made of various different plants that have different colors during this season, as seen here, so you get a lovely mix of colors...

Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/2.5, ISO 360 — map & image datanearby photos
Iwato Ochiba Shrine (岩戸落葉神社) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 4000 — map & image datanearby photos

We then moved over to the Soren-ji Temple (宗蓮寺), which was fantastic when we visited it five years ago, as seen in A Few Pretty Pictures from Kyoto’s Middle-of-Nowhere Sourenji Temple and Kyoto’s Souren-ji Temple at f/1.2.

This time it wasn't quite as good, perhaps because we were a bit early, but the little park nearby was wonderful.

Quiet Little Park -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 60mm — 1/500 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Quiet Little Park
Small, Steep Road leading up to the park/temple area -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/6.3, ISO 400 — map & image datanearby photos
Small, Steep Road
leading up to the park/temple area

The road up to the temple is narrow and steep (400m with an average grade of 11%). I've never ridden it, but I will soon. I made a Strava segment for it.

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/6.3, ISO 560 — map & image datanearby photos
Steps Up to the Temple (not quite like last time ) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/6.3, ISO 4500 — map & image datanearby photos
Steps Up to the Temple
(not quite like last time)
Pretty Road -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2017 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 50mm — 1/320 sec, f/6.3, ISO 640 — map & image datanearby photos
Pretty Road

It was a nice start to the season.


All 2 comments so far, oldest first...

I arrived here via your post about the mosses at the Giouji Temple, Kyoto (you posted that 10 years and 5 mionths ago!) whilst seaching for information on moss gardens/kokedera. I am establishing a moss garden and I am looking for inspiration. So, completely distracted from my original intent, I continued exploring the rest of Japan meandering through your blog. I am so surprised and glad to see that you still continue to share your adventures. I really enjoyed reading your impressions and admiring you beautiful photos and will be visiting again. Thank you! PS I currently live in Nova Scotia, Canada

— comment by Lize on November 19th, 2017 at 8:22pm JST (3 weeks, 1 day ago) comment permalink

Beautiful as always.
Janet in Seattle

— comment by Janet on November 20th, 2017 at 3:52am JST (3 weeks, 1 day ago) comment permalink
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