日本の原風景(徒歩日本縦断#40)

40日目の今日は道の駅信越さかえで起床

人も誰もいなくてぐっすり眠ったが、そのせいか心霊的な怖い夢を見て1時くらいに起きてしまったのだけが誤算だった。そのあと1時間ほど眠れなくて参った。

まぁ1人野宿だったらそんなこともある。

割り切って寝て、5時に起床。

昨日の夜までは土砂降りだったが、青空も見える天気に安心して荷物を片付ける

そんな今日のみちのり

さぁ、今日は国道の最高地点標高2172mがある渋峠の麓の温泉町まで47キロ歩く。

この町、山ノ内町には温泉もあるし、道の駅もあるし、渋峠にアタックできる1番近くの町として今日はここを目指すのだ。

連日の長距離移動の中、47キロはなかなかきついが、明日少しでも良い位置から渋峠に挑みたいのでここは我慢の日としよう。

今日はスタートから47キロずっと信濃川(長野では千曲川と呼び名が変わるので次から千曲川って呼びます)沿いの渓谷の風景を見ながら山道をひた歩く

朝靄に包まれた幻想的な世界だ。

今にもコダマがひょこっと現れそうな、もののけ姫のような世界

忘れてはいけない東日本大震災の翌日に起きた長野北部地震の被災地の栄村は今は元気に復興を遂げていた。

黄金色に輝く田園風景と里山が千曲川に沿うように続いている。

これこそ日本の原風景と言わんばかりののどかな集落が続いて、思わず足を止めて見入ってしまう。

9キロほど歩いて次の町、野沢温泉村に入ってもそんな原風景は続く

特にたまらないのが、この棚田の風景だ。

平地のように大規模な田園風景ではなく、山あいの限られたスペースを上手に使って自然と共存した日本人の創意工夫が良く伝わる。

棚田の風景こそ日本の原風景なのだろう

歩き始めから13キロほど歩くと地図に載っていない道の駅が突然現れた

謎の道の駅野沢温泉は実は今年の8月31日にオープンしたらしい。まだ地図にも載らない出来立ての道の駅なのだ。すべすべのコンクリートからはまだどこか工事中のような、新品の匂いがした。

本来休憩はまだだったが、せっかくなので少し休憩。

コンビニなどが全くない道なのは前もって調べていたので、昨日買い込んだ食料を食べてトイレを済まし…

今日は日差しが強くなりそうだったので、カラビナを使ってバックパックにソーラーパネルをくくりつけた。

なかなかごついバックパックになってしまったが、これもこうやってブログを更新するためには充電という面で不可欠なことなのだ。

野沢温泉村を抜け、飯山市に入ると風景は一変。

日本の原風景のような棚田続きの風景から、三国山脈をバックに千曲川が流れる爽快な風景に変わった

「これこそ長野の風景だ」と言わんばかりの豪快かつ爽快な風景。昨日の土砂降りで川は荒れているが、それもまた絵になってしまう。

お昼休憩は千曲川沿いの道の駅で

水を新しくいれて、昨日買い込んだおにぎりを貪りながらなんとなくスマホを見ていたら、つい最近会った甲冑姿のままキックボードで日本縦断しているサムライさんから連絡がきていた

なんと突然のラジオ出演(紹介)決定。

しかも週に一回しかない「今週の一コマ」というテーマで横石を紹介してくれるというのだ

サムライさんにとって今週の印象に残った出来事に横石が選ばれただけでも嬉しいのに、いざ木陰でラジオを聴いていたら横石との出会いを熱く語ってくれていた

「自転車で日本一周のあと徒歩日本縦断という敢えて過酷な道を選ぶ選択とそれを話している時の目の輝きが印象的でした。これから日本一高い峠に挑むそうですが、僕も勇気をもらいました」と。

いやいやサムライさん。本当に暑い中でこれでもかってくらい暑そうな甲冑姿で、熱い信念持ちながら旅をするサムライさんにも勇気をもらいました横石は。この勇気がお互い様だったのならこんなに幸せなことはないですね。

今はサムライさんも横石も、人からもらうことばっかりかもしれませんが、挑戦する気持ちと勇気だけはこうやって人に与えることができるかもしれないんですよね。なんて言いたくなってしまった。ダメだ、ただでさえ暑いのに暑苦しくなってしまうからやめだ。心の中だけで思っておけば良い、こんなことは。

景色の綺麗な木陰でじっくり聴いていたので身体も、そして心も充電満タンだ。残り20キロもしっかり歩こう。

おっとその前に

道の駅でおやきを売ってたのでつい購入
味は変わり種の舞茸
キノコ大好き星人の横石歓喜

そして新潟から信濃川沿いを歩き続けて、気づけば日本一長い川の中間地点まで遡っていた。俺は鮭なのか?思わず自分で自分に突っ込んだ

飯山を抜けてから中野市に入ると、正面に三国山脈を捉えてますます登りがきつくなる。

今日はもう40キロ弱歩いていて、連日の疲れも癒しきれない中、正直きつい部分もあったが先ほどのラジオと、なにより風景に励まされる

これから挑む三国山脈はどんどん間近に迫り、アタックの日が近いことを肌で感じる。これは武者震いだろうか。

そしてこれは長い間旅人をやってた感なんだけど、今日は今まで夏と秋の境目をうろちょろしてた季節が、完全に秋に傾いた気がする。

なんだろう。晴れてるっちゃ晴れてるんだけど、空気が蒸し蒸ししていなくて、カラッと澄んでいる。いつも歩いている分、その違いは大きな違いとして横石の肌に触れてきた

コスモスが似合う気候になってきたんだなぁ

そして夏の終わりを肌で感じてしまって一抹の寂しさも覚える。単に標高が高いので寒いというのもあるんだけど、やはり風は秋を教えてくれている。

さぁもう一踏ん張り。気合いで登りしかない今日の道のりをクリアして

無事温泉にたどり着いた。

長野鉄道の最終駅。湯田中駅だ。

ここは温泉併設の駅なのである

しかも300円。新潟市を出て以来、連日の長距離移動で疲れた体とは裏腹に全く温泉に入らなかったので4日ぶりに体を清めてきた。

さぁ、心と身体の準備はできた。

いよいよ明日は国道最高地点、2172mの頂へ

歩行距離 47キロ

長野県栄村→長野県山ノ内町

総歩行距離 1327キロ

今日も最後まで読んでいただきありがとうございます!ブログランキングにも参加しているので是非下の日本一周ボタンを押して応援お願いします!

にほんブログ村 旅行ブログ 日本一周へ


にほんブログ村

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