A ceremony was held Friday to celebrate the first day of the climbing season for a 6.1-meter peak in western Japan, the lowest mountain in Japan.
Mt. Bentenyama is known as the lowest natural mountain in the country and the local preservation association in Tokushima city annually holds an opening ceremony on June 1, the date matching its height.
Although there are lower mountains on the map such as the 3-meter-high Mt. Hiyori in Sendai city or 4.5-meter-high Mt. Tempozan in Osaka, these peaks were artificially formed, according to the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan.
“This mountain is so safe that no one has gone missing. Let’s pray that no accidents occur,” Shakudo Yamashita, the director of the association, said in the ceremony.
“It took me only 23 steps to the top. It’s much easier to climb than Mt. Fuji,” said Haruko Sato, a 79-year-old local woman who climbs the small mountain every year.
About 10,000 people successfully climb the mountain every year, according to the association.
(A ceremony at the foot of Mt. Bentenyama)