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Hiromine Hilltop

Average Rating:    (3.5 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 2

This is a luvely bit o' mountaintop singletrack which combines some beginner-friendly twists with a sense exhilaration leaving most trail riders feeling satisfied in all respects except for the length. Best ridden autumn and spring, avoid the rainy season.

Getting there: The trailhead is situated in front of Hiromine shrine, within Himeji City, Hyogo Prefecture and only about 6km from the centre of town and the main station. Riding to the trailhead gives a great warm-up as the trail starts at nearly 300metres elevation most of which is gained over the last 2.5km in distance.

Follow the winding road up from the Shirakuni traffic lights which are situated at the north-west corner of Himeji Racetrack itself opposite the Self Defence Force Base (these are the two most well-known landmarks to guide you). Pass under the expressway, the road winds and gets steeper, note the panoramic viewpoint just before you reach The Highland Villa Hotel (being renovated at the time of writing). Asend past the hotel and you will find yourself in a carpark with a large concrete Torii (Shinto gate) at one end. If you have driven, leave the car here. Ride through the Torii following the single lane road as it climbs to the shrine proper. After a couple of little switchbacks you come out at the south west(?) corner of the shrine grounds. There is a toilet here and the inevitable drinks machines over the other side.

Remember this place is of cultural and religious signifcance to many people, I'm sure the shrine could easily ban mtbrs from the mountain if it wished.

The Ride: Keeping the shrine to your left follow a dirtrack as it narrows to a path and ascends a little. Go past a derelict hut and over some duckboards, the trail winds through a copse and out to grassy area. Just beyond this it forks; left and straight ahead, take whichever you prefer first. Hikers use these trails too.

Left fork: Follow the narrow trail and enjoy some great singletrack and updowns, the way is often mashed into powder (by wild boar?) and covered in dead leaves. It is 100% ridable above intermediate level and great for beginners. The only thing to watch out for is drops which sometimes appear to your left. Falling off here could result in a nasty tumble. After around 1.5km you will come to the Downhill From Hell, so just turn round and ride back to the fork. You could carry your bike down the rocky descent(15mins) but the trails at the bottom of the valley aren't satisfying enough to warrant it.

Straight On: This trail is slightly more rocky and challenging in at least one place, but is still fun for anyone who likes XC and singletrack. Ultimately it disappears into a rocky outcrop after 1km plus, so repeat as above. You could shoulder (or ride!?) your bike over the rocks but the going gets tough and again descends into insane DH.

The main shortfall of this ride for an XCer is that it's too short and doesn't go anywhere or form
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Latitude
34.87354730748056
Longitude
134.70081567764282
Trail Length
6
Trail Level
Trails for all skill levels
Trail Type
Singletrack
Country
JP
Web Address
Information Added By
   


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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

Review Date
February 18, 2009

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a month

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Reviewed by: kjellhahn ,  Cross Country Rider

Other recommended trails in the same area:
hiromine is ok, but try the next mountain to the East, Masui . Take 518 north toward Hiromine Mountain and turn right after passing the horse track (kiebajyo) on your left. There will be a Lawson convenience store on your left, the route up to the mountain is just after that, again on the left.

The trail actually connects to hiromine but that part isnt the best...i hate having to walk my bike and just ride up the roads and take the trails down.
what you want to do is turn right at the parking lot at the top of the masui mountain. there are usually a bunch of motorcycle punks tearing the hell out of the place. ive even seen a police chase there.
anyway, after the parking lot ride up past all the temple/shrine stuff and there is a path behind them that snakes its way to the east. once you get into the forest, head right- aiming you mostly south and toward the city.
you want to go up as high as you can on the trail passing the power lines and take the last fork to the right down the long staircase as the trail starts to head back down. for hiking trails the course is pretty good. i usually only have to touch the ground twice on the trail.



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Review Date
March 9, 2008

Overall Rating
 3 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 2 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a month

Rate this review?

Reviewed by: Aphex ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
The last line of the route description above was cut and should read:

"The main shortfall of this ride for an XCer is that it's too short and doesn't go anywhere or form a loop, otherwise this trail is great fun."

Good singletrack most of the way, can get a bit rocky and very rooty (how unusual for Japan, eh?) so becomes challenging/dangerous in wet weather.

Recommended Route:
See trail destcripion. There is also a tiny detour from the "straight ahead" fork; you will see a less-used slightly descending trail off to the left at one point. This leads to a hill-top cemetary, dismount and head as far as you can go through the cemetary for beautiful mountain views, and a great sunset if you time it right.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
There's a hidden trail which involves carrying you bike uphill for about 100metres off the "straight ahead" fork of this one. Local hearsay has it that Gary Fisher rode it and described it as "a beast". I've only ridden it once, so will post details once I've familiarised myself.



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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)