One of only two hot spring spa in Japan !

 by Chis.

On our way to the hotel in Tomuraushi area, Higashi Taisetsu-so, there is a hidden hot spring spa that is strong alkaline. There are only two alkaline hot spring in Japan and this is one of them.
The name is OSOUSHI Onsen, Shikanoyu-so.
Please check out the detail at http://foodsnet.net/
Driving on the unpaved road beside the dam lake and a river for 20 minutes from the fork on the prefectural route 718, the old small building appeared in the forest and the pretty dog received us kindly.
To avoid mis-understanding, I did not take picture in the spa. As it may be difficult to reach the spa in winter, I recommend you to visit there before snowfall.
This photo was taken at the lookout on the hillside to reach Lake Shikaribetsu. The fertile plain of Tokachi area can be seen from there. The scenery was worthwhile without obstacles to the fine view.
I could recognize that I was going up the mountain that held a caldera lake. I think everybody is impressed by the scenery.
The hotels bear the Lake Shikaribetsu can be seen at http://travel.rakuten.com/hotelinfo/63/135963/
The mountain is called "Kuchibiru Yama(Lips Mountain)" because of its shape like the upper lip and its reflection on the surface of the lake.
This lake freeze up every year and hot spring spa is set up on the ice as well as the ice bar with blocks of ice. Cold cold beer can be savored with the ice pints.  
This hot spring was run by a couple but they gave up running the spa and now it is run by Hotel Fukuhara at the edge of Lake Shikaribetsu.

The name is Yamada Onsen.
During I soaked my self in the spa, everybody talked about the landlady of the spa, who ran the spa as well as the accommodation.  It sounds that the dinner she made was superb and in particular, fried edible wild plants was fit the pints of cold beer to a T.  Most of the guests who stayed in the ryokan drank too much because of the delicious cuisine she made.  
The accommodation is not available now but the spa ease the pain of your heart and body for 100 days in a year because it is closed from mid autumn to the beginning of summer.
I was allured by the catch " It opens for only 100 days !" and dropped by on our way to Lake Nukabira which is the artificial lake made by the dam.
The foliage is turning to red and yellow.
Hit the road and enjoy this autumn !

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