The Shin-etsu Trail runs for 80 kilometers along the border between Nagano and Niigata Prefectures, following the path of the Sekida Mountain ridge.
The forests are perhaps best known for their beech trees. Tall, well-shaped beech trees form a corridor of green along the path. The packed-earth trail also makes for easy walking. In spring, the last traces of snow can be seen among new greenery and flowers bursting into bloom. In the fall, hikers can enjoy the brilliant colours of Historically, there were 16 passages through the mountains that connected Nagano with Niigata (traditionally called Shinano and Echigo, respectively). These passages were used for carrying salt and sea-products from Niigata, and Uchiyama paper and mustard seed oil from Nagano. The famous warlord Kenshin Uesugi is said to have led tens of thousands of his men through these passages to fight the Battle of Kawanakajima.
Our sample trek is 2 nights, however we can also arrange a full trail trek which takes 6 days, 5 nights to hike the all the courses complete with authentic Japanese style accommodation.
The Shin-Etsu trail is a two hour bullet train ride from Tokyo to Iiyama (Closest Station) by “Hokuriku Shinkansen”. After the trek, we would love to help you relax and take in the sights of Kyoto and Osaka via Kanazawa by bullet train and limited express. Contact us to plan the rest of your journey!
English Speaking Guide on the Trail
2 Breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 Dinners
2 Nights at Madarao Kogen Hotel (Japanese style Minshuku accommodation optional)
All transportation whilst in Iiyama area . Japan Holidays can assist with details on travel to Iiyama
All entrances fees whilst in Iiyama
Official Shin-Etsu Trail map
What’s Not Included
Transfers to Iiyama – Japan Holidays can assist with details on travel to Iiyama using Rail Pass
Pay locally for drinks with meals and for lunches
Entrances fees not mentioned in the itinerary
Single room supplement for solo travellers