Well it looks like someone didn’t do their job… The text written in the screenshots says I’ll be staying somewhere near a park… Which was apparently written before I had found a hotel near that location, and was probably written before I decided to stay at hotels for most nights.
Fortunately, I do have access to this information on my phone via the magic of Google Sheets…
According to the sheet I’ll be staying at Ojiya Park Hotel in 小千谷 (おじや) .
The walk yesterday was reasonably good with just a little bit of rain. Lots of walking along railroad tracks including scene a interesting train construction thing that I hadn’t seen before. I was a little bit late by the time I saw that I didn’t take the time to upload the picture but I have a couple to upload.
I stopped for a bit in Urasa Station, which was largely closed except for restrooms and two shops on the second floor: some kind of gift shop and a convenience store.
There was an up going escalator up to the second level which was high so actually about the three floors worth of steps. So I left my bag downstairs while going upstairs to pee and such.
I went to the convenience store and got a bunch of stuff but then realized my wallet was downstairs in my bag because it won’t fit in my pockets when I’m wearing my rain gear.
Fortunately, this is Japan, and unfortunately, the train station was nearly desolate, due to covid I guess, so my bag was completely untouched and fine when I went downstairs to get my wallet. Anyway the point is just that I had to tell the cashier apologies and then run down the stairs and escalator back up with my wallet to pay.
I was barefoot the entire day except for about 2 km walking north of that station, where the roads just didn’t have any sidewalk but did have lots of gravel and such. That was around the area that has two different snow sheds in a row on the highway next to the Joetsu Line.
It was nice walking along the Uono River; it was pretty large and flowing pretty quickly with bluish looking clear snow melt water.
I am in a small city called Koide now, and planning to pack and go pretty soon.
I have not updated my website to put the day by day things at the top of the page so I have to dig down a little bit to find that entry and figure out where I’m going next.
Just before walking under one of the snowsheds it started to hail a little bit
as part of the precipitation. The hailstones were only a few millimeters across,
but definitely not sleet because it wasn’t that cold.
I ate one of the hailstones and it was great. :-)
For several long barefoot segments, I was walking in the street which was much nicer than the adjacent sidewalk. I could see way down the street and move out of the way when cars came, which they rarely did because it was so rural.
Just before Urasa Station, I interacted with two groups of people: two teenage Japanese boys who took pictures with me including @kousei_mountains on Instagram, and three people speaking English, but who didn’t seem interested in talking when I said hello and such. I felt a little sad because I haven’t gotten to speak much English (in person) during this trip.
Day 18 was
Before I even had time to go down the hill from where I was able to take pictures of the Japanese Alps, I saw a red car approaching so jumped out of the way but then the driver stopped and was a hey it’s me from NASPA, and I’m like oh my God hi it’s so good to see you!
She asked about Jason and I explained that he went on ahead, needing to finish the walk by the 7th of May. So from here on we are both walking separately.
She wished me good luck and went on her way.
So interesting to have so many connections happening here on this stretch of highway!
By the way, the coordinates of this entry look much more likely to be correct than on the previous two or three entries.. at least this time they’re showing me next to a highway instead of in the middle of small roads through small fields.