Visited Oirase, Towada-ko and Mt Hakkoda for the 1st time. Re-visited part of Urabandai but added new locations such as Nagatsugawa, Aizu-Wakamatsu etc.
Oirase stream (奧入瀨溪流)
It stretches for about 14km, draining water from nearby Towada-ko. There are easy foot trails covering most of the stream. As we visited during peak Koyo season by car, we stopped by at various scenic spots and did not cover the entire trail on foot.
Visited the observatory by car. As most of the lake rim is surrounded by cliffs without road access, we took the lake cruise which offered stunning views of Koyo. These views reminded us of our past visits in Chuzenji-ko in Oku-Nikko. There are easy walking paths along the lake rim, along the pier.
Took the ropeway to top station @1600m and followed foot trails for an easy walk. Koyo has already finished leaving pale brown forest views along the ropeway ride. Along the foot trails, there were lush green coniferous forests, dotted by occasional ponds.