健闘を称えて(徒歩日本横断#6)

6日目の今日は釧路町のキトウシ野営場で起床

昨日は濃霧で気づかなかったが、朝は霧が晴れていて、今自分が寝ていた場所の雄大な大自然を改めて理解する。

これは晴れたらまるで神威岬で野宿してるような感覚になるだろう。

そんな今日は朝からルート選択に迷う

それは釧路で1日停滞して洗濯や充電、お風呂など必要なことを済ませるか、その先の帯広でその作業をするかだ。

「そんなん二つともの町でやればいいじゃん」と思うかもしれないが、そんなお金に余裕はないし、なにより帯広を通れば今回通過しない「晩成温泉」というキャンプ場併設の温泉に行ってみたかったのだ。

この温泉は数々の旅人が激推しする温泉で、500円払って温泉に入れば無料でキャンプできるし、なにより泉質が「イソジン温泉」と言われるほどに成分そのままの効能のある温泉なのだ

ところがどっこい。そんなに行きたい晩成温泉も帯広を経由するなら赤ルートで行くのでオレンジで印をつけている晩成温泉は通らない…

一方釧路で全ての作業を済ませれば、帯広は通過せずにそのまま晩成温泉を通過できる…

そんな選択に迷って、珍しく小一時間はテントを片付けるのに考え込んでいた。

悩み抜いた末に晩成温泉を諦めて帯広経由を選んだのだが、決め手としては2つ。一つは今日釧路に泊まってしまってはテントを貼ることができずに濡れたテントを乾かせないこと。

もう一つは晩成温泉経由だと、キャンプ場はあるが、3日間の間コンビニも何もない無補給区間が続くのだ。流石に3日分の食料を積み込んで歩くのはなかなか骨が折れるし、帯広経由の方が安定して旅を出来そうというのが理由だ。距離は長くなるが、やはり帯広のグルメは外せないし、帯広に行くことにする。

腹が決まれば急いでテント撤収作業

「いや歩きながら考えればいいやん」

って思うかもしれないけど、釧路で今日泊まるなら20キロしか歩かない反面、釧路を抜けるなら、今日は40キロ歩かなければいけない日程だったので、時間は遅くなっても久しぶりの40キロとあっては、ある程度覚悟を決めて歩き始めたかった。

そしてだいぶ遅くなったが、昨日お世話になったたくさんの方々と別れを告げて、朝8時にキトウシ野営場を歩き出す

山道を通りながら釧路町の集落を抜けて、先を目指す。霧がない分、不気味感はなく昨日よりは断然歩きやすい。

それにしても釧路町は難読地名が多い

浦雲泊と書いてポントマリなんて誰が読めるのだろうか、ここら辺はアイヌの文化が根強いのだろうか。そんなことを考えて山道を進んでいると

根室を歩き始めて170キロ。ようやく道東一の都市の釧路市へ辿り着く…

ひとしおの感動を覚えながらも、まだまだ山の中。気を抜かずに進むと

山を抜けて視界に飛び込んできたのは釧路市街の街並み…こんなに家が立ってるのを見るのは、まだ自宅を出て一週間ほどしか経っていないのにひどく懐かしい気がする

思えばこの6日間は所々に町はあるも、ほぼ全ての風景が湿原と海と森だった…改めて北海道、ましてや道東の果てしない大自然を思い出しながら、釧路市にピットイン。

マックに総合スーパーに、今まで見てこなかったものが沢山ありすぎて思わず写真を撮ってしまう有様。つい昨日まで鹿をパシャパシャしていた自分とのギャップに自分で苦しむ。

そして釧路市街に入った途端

一気に青空が広がり、今年北海道に来て初めて「夏」な蒸し暑さが襲ってくる。

急いで帽子をかぶって、これも北海道に来て初めて、大粒の汗をかきながら先へ進む。

釧路市街を横目で見ながら抜ける頃にはスタートから25キロ地点。ここまでいいペースで来ているが残り15キロがなかなかきつい

実際40キロを歩くのは久しぶりだ。けれどもこの5日間で順調に体を慣らして30キロの世界が順応してきたので、そろそろ40キロという世界を一回突破しておくことが、今後の旅のためにも必須条件なのだ(これからまだしばらくは30キロ平均が続くけど、それでも一回40キロを歩いた自信が30キロをより楽に歩かせてくれる)

一回人間は辛いことを済ませるとそれ以下は許容範囲として広がっていくのだ。

ってな自論があるので今回はいくら辛くても40キロは歩き切らなければいけない。

そして市街地最後のコンビニがちょうど残り15キロ地点だったので改めてゆっくりと休憩を取り、釧路市街を抜けると

先ほどまでの晴天と打って変わって一気に濃霧に包まれて気温も体感で10度ほどは低下した。

暑さも嫌だが、こうも気温差が激しいと身体の順応がついていかないものだ。ここに来てさらに辛い状況が重なるが、国道38号に合流して、あとはひたすらまっすぐ15キロ進むだけ。根性が試されていた。

太平洋に戻ってくると、景色は長万部手前の静狩付近を彷彿とさせるような海沿いの一本道。天気もまたあの時通った風景そのままだ。

歩くペースはいくらか落ちたが、それでも時速4キロ以上はキープして、歯を食いしばって前に進む。足が痛いというよりかは長時間重いバックパックを背負ってアスファルトを歩くので足の裏が慢性的に痛い。

釧路市を越えて白糠町に入ればゴールの道の駅はすぐそこ

最後の力を振り絞ってどうにか歩ききり、午後5時過ぎ

今日の目的地の道の駅しらぬか恋問に到着!

今日は北海道に来て初めて自分で道の駅の売店でお酒を買ってご褒美の一杯だ

裏手の海を眺めながらのんびりリラックスして自分自身の健闘を称えていると

わんちゃん連れのご夫婦に話しかけていただき、わんちゃんに癒され

最後にはたくさんの差し入れを頂いてしまった…

コロナの渦の中でなかなか話しかけられる機会も去年までと比べれば少なくなったが(看板つけてないしね)こういう出会いは本当に元気をいただける。

今日はこのまま道の駅の裏手にテントを張って寝る予定だ…明日でちょうど1週間となるこの旅時が実りあるものになるように祈って寝ることにしよう

歩行距離 40キロ

北海道釧路町→白糠町

総歩行距離 207キロ

着々と…

今日もブログを読んでくださり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してください!

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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