(生駒山) Mt. Ikoma Hike

An accidental find while scrolling for hikes, this was a gorgeous trip solely due to the flowers. Unfortunately, this season also means this is the time that all those caterpillars (the hairy ones and others) were also all over. 

Budget: JPY1,830 (~USD17)
  • JPY410. Train, Namba Station to Ikoma Station. 
  • JPY500. Cable car from Ikoma Station. 
  • JPY560. Cable car to Shigisanguchi Station. 
  • JPY360. Train, Shigisanguchi to Namba Station. 
Hike Date / Difficulty (Elevation: 642m / 2,106ft)
  • May 4, 2021
  • Difficulty: 2 out of 5, for the sheer length of the hike. Minimal elevation gains/losses. 
  • Map Link 

When to Go
Anytime during the year, but the flower season is only around Golden Week, which is end of April/early May. 

Special Notes
  • Weather forecast: English / Japanese.
  • Mt. Ikoma's summit is an amusement park. The summit marker is in the middle of a little ride. 
  • Trailheads. So many! Most of them accessible via train stations. See map above. 
    • Ikoma Station. The train station is Ikoma Station, which is about five minutes' walk to Torimae Station (取前駅), a cable car that takes you to the top of Mt. Ikoma. 
  • Mountain huts. 
    • Paid. None.
    • Free. None.
    • Camping. None.
Itinerary
  • Given the numerous trailheads, my plan was simple - leave my hostel at 8am, go up Mt. Ikoma at and hike until I'm tired, and then exit. 
Arriving at Kintetsu Line in Namba Station. This was my marker to the coin locker where I left my stuff at. 

At Ikoma Station, exit via Central Exit, following the signs for the cable car. 

Then I took a left turn following the sign to South Exit. 

The signs have gotten a lot smaller - took a right here. 

Then a hundred meters or so of walking straight. 

Finally arrived at Torimae Station. 

The ride was a cute one. 

I paid JPY500 for the ride to the top. 

Transferring to the second cable car, also part of the JPY500 fare. 

The amusement park at the top. 

I walked straight, and turned left here. 

I soon turned right near the restrooms, looking for that tower over there as my marker. The summit marker of Mt. Ikoma is in the middle of the rides to the right, under the colorful roof. 

The summit marker of Mt. Ikoma. 

Seriously, that's it. Either way, I continued on. 

Soon enough I was on a trail, thankfully. I walked the flat path and saw this fork. There will be a couple of them, so make sure to use a map (I used yamap). But nothing to worry about, as worst case scenario, you end the hike earlier than you wanted to. 

Arrived at the viewing deck right next to the road. The path for the hike continues on to the left of the deck. 

Here's the rather obscure entrance. 

A good portion of the trail is walking next to the road. Not ideal, but much better than walking on the road itself. 

Passing through one small town. 

The trail is right there across. 

Both left and right leads to the same place, I took the right one. I am shooting for the tsutsuji garden, which looks like it was close to Mt. Hatatate (旗立山) 

And immediately took the left at the fork. 

Went straight here. The fence was misleading. 

Going up, finally. 

Took the path to the right. 

It was quite a crowd. 

Then went straight down. I honestly felt I was lost, but no, this was the right path. 

Mt. Hatatate (旗立山)! Yup, that's it. The garden is still some ways to go down, and then turn left at the road (cemented)

The path further going down. Turned left first chance I got. Easy to follow as it was crowded. 

Whoa, finally here. 

WHOAAAA. 

This is gorgeous!

Oh, and I crashed my drone. Had to go offtrail to find it, but I found it!

Taking a look back, after my rather scary experience looking for my drone (and being covered in about five leeches after that segue)

I continued down the road, and turned left at this fork to climb back up the trail. 

It was a gentle climb. 

Til I got to another fork, and I turned right. Basically to the right of the tunnel here. 

At the trail I saw a couple of these mushrooms houses. 

With nothing inside. Wonder what's up with these. 

A summit! Seriously. 

Here's the summit marker. Three countries mountain (三国山)

Continuing on. 

Another parking lot stop - with people driving here to have a picnic and ring the bell. 

With these locks too. For couples I assume. 

And the view from the bell. 

Back to the hike. This fork was misleading - but thankfully I was following someone. Turned right. 

Crossed a swamp/pond. 

View of the swamp/pond to the right of the picture above. 

Back to following the road. 

The path soon opened up. 

Aaaand it seems I'm done. Or almost. 

Trying to go the cable car. I wanted to summit Mt. Takayasu (高安山), the trailhead of which is to the right of the post. Pretty hard to see, huh. 

Here's the close up. The trail is to the right. 

Summit marker. Zero views. Don't go here. 

Went straight to go back down to the cable car. 

Almost there!

The cable car down. 

Takayasuyama station!

The view from the cablecar. 

Waiting for the train to go back to Namba Station. 

A covid special - empty Namba Station. 


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