My destination was the old and historic community of Yui, located just over the Satta Pass from Okitsu and nearby Shizuoka city. Yui is a small and charming seaside town and one of the original 53 stages of the old Tokaido highway (as are Okitsu and many communities within Shizuoka). My interest on this day though was not the town of Yui itself, but instead the historic old pass which crosses over the once treacherous Satta Pass. The original Tokaido route over Satta Pass is regarded by many historians as having been one of the most dangerous sections of the old highway. The danger was due to the precipitous slopes as well as the many remote and lonely stretches which were once the haunt of bandits. I had hoped to cross Satta Pass on the original route between Okitsu and Yui which is today quite safe and a pleasant place to hike and explore, with several stunning vista points offering spectacular views of Mt. Fuji (when the clouds and weather permit).
I knew a direct route through Shizuoka and Okitsu to the start of Satta Pass, though as I was eager to leave the city I opted to enter the mountains at a location I was only mildly familiar with. After a while I became convinced that the small farm road on which I was riding might in fact be an alternate route over the mountains to Yui. I encountered two dead-ends before finally summiting the mountains and beginning my confident descent into Yui. Upon reaching the canyon below I was surprised to discover a small village next to a fairly large (for the area) river. The sea was nowhere in sight and I could only assume that I had become disoriented and lost while traversing the mountains. I elected to follow the river to the sea from which point I was sure I could regain my bearing. I realized my mistake after reaching the sea and could see the Okitsu side of Satta Pass nearby. I had, in fact, never been on Satta Pass and had instead been wandering through a small range of mountains I had previously never explored. In the end though I was disappointed in my mistake I was happy to have found a new and very interesting area ripe for exploration and discovery. The road to Yui, however, must wait for another day.
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