In Japan, Mount Fuji has started its climbing season with new rules. To protect the famous trail and manage too many people visiting, officials now charge climbers a fee and limit how many can climb each day.

Mount Fuji in Japan Sets New Fees, Limits Tourists to Protect Trail

(Photo : DSD from Pexels)

Mount Fuji Sets Limits to Protect Trail

Starting this Monday, just before sunrise, climbers found a new gate at a station about halfway up the mountain. Here, they need to pay 2,000 yen (about $12) and get a wristband to access the trail. This year, no more than 4,000 people can climb Mount Fuji each day.

These changes were made after problems last year with too many people on the trails, which led to trash, pollution, and unsafe conditions. 

According to Reuters, the governor of Yamanashi, where part of Mount Fuji is located, mentioned that these steps are needed to avoid accidents and keep the mountain safe for everyone.

Mount Fuji, a symbol of Japan and a still-active volcano, draws hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. It's a popular spot for climbing and a sacred site that has been important in Japanese culture for centuries.

With the Japanese yen at a low point, more tourists are coming to Japan looking for good deals, which has increased the number of visitors to places like Mount Fuji. This has put a strain on local facilities and tested the patience of locals.

The climbing season will go on until Sep. 10, when it becomes too cold and snowy. Officials hope that the new measures will help protect Mount Fuji and make sure it remains a beautiful and safe place for visitors.

Related Article: Mount Fuji's View Blocked as Second Town Battles Tourist Issues

Tragic Deaths Before Climbing Season

Just days before the official climbing season began, a tragic incident occurred at Mount Fuji, Japan's highest mountain. Keita Kurakami, a well-known rock climber and ambassador for Patagonia, lost consciousness while climbing and later died in the hospital. 

This sad news was confirmed by local police and reported by NHK, Japan's public broadcaster.

In a separate but equally tragic incident, the bodies of three other climbers were found on Mount Fuji. 

As per The New York Times, these climbers, discovered in different spots near the mountain's crater, are believed to have climbed the mountain separately. The discovery of the bodies was also reported on Wednesday by local police.

The climbing community is mourning these losses as Mount Fuji's climbing season draws near. 

Shizuoka Prefecture police began a search operation after a Tokyo woman reported losing contact with her 53-year-old husband, who had sent his family a photo from near the summit before going silent. He was later identified as one of the deceased.

As Mount Fuji's popularity increases, so do concerns about safety due to overcrowding and risky climbing practices. To address this, Yamanashi Prefecture has implemented new safety measures, including a daily cap on climbers and a small fee, to manage the flow and ensure climbers' safety. 

They have also installed a gate that closes overnight to discourage unsafe nighttime climbs.

Climbers are reminded that outside of the designated summer season, Mount Fuji can be perilous with harsh winds and ice, making climbing extremely dangerous. 

Safety measures are critical in preventing accidents like altitude sickness and hypothermia, especially for those attempting to climb without sufficient breaks.

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