Monday, November 9, 2020

Okuizumo Orochi Train


Okuizumo is the region of Shimane wherein is set one of the most swell known of the Izumo myths, the slaying of the 8-headed serpent Yamata no Orochi by Susano. The Kisuki Line is a railway line that runs from lake Shinji up into the Chugoku Mountains and pretty much follows the Hi River which is the site of many of the Orochi stories.

The Orochi Train, a scenic, reservation-ony, train runs between Kisuki and Bingo Ochiai and has just two carriages. However the trainis only ever half-full as a reservation gets you two seats, one in the enclosed car, and one in the open car.

The line roughly follows the Hi River and mostly has great views. When it passes through tunnels the interior of the carriages are illuminated. As it approached the Chugoku Mountains they appear impassable, but at Izumo Sakana Station the train goes back and forth up a series of switchbacks, some of the few still remaining in Japan.

The train then follows a 190-degree curve followed by a 170-degree curve in the opposite direction before arriving at Izumo Minari Station, the highest station in the JR West network. You also catch a glimpse of the Orochi Loop, a road that corkscrews down the river below.

At Bingo Ochiai it connect with the Geibi Line which runs between Niimi and Miyoshi.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I've been on lots of custom Japanese trains but had never heard of or seen this one. Thanks for the photos and info!