Nagata Trail (永田)

The Nagata Trail should be considered as Yakushima`s most challenging. There are easier ways to ascend Nagatadake (1,881m) via the Yodogawa Trail. Do not attempt this trail in bad weather. The Nagata Trail is a long 12km (one way) taxing ascent and it would require staying overnight in a mountain hut near the summit. If you are fit and healthy then it should take around 12 – 14 hours to get to the Shikanosawa Mountain Hut. The Nagata Trail begins at around 100m and after climbing a mere 1,780m in a day then you could offer yourself a little badge of achievement!

Amongst the local inhabitants then the pilgrims of Nagata are given the utmost respect due to the effort they have to undertake to carry out their annual pilgrimage to Nagatadake.

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The Nagata Trail can be accessed at the back of the Nagata village close to the Yodogawa River.

There are two water locations with the first at around 900m and the second at around 1,250m. In between the two water locations are a large sugi tree named Nanahon Sugi (七本杉) and a lesser peak known as Take no Tsuji (竹の辻). This peak would be considered about halfway to the mountain hut.

The trail continues along the ridge for a further 6 hours or so until finally arriving to the Shikanosawa Mountain Hut. It would be possible to also camp directly in front of the hut if you don`t fancy staying in the hut. It would be unlikely that you would have time to go beyond the hut and summit Nagatadake on the same day as it takes about 2 hours to hike to the mountain top. It would be better to save this ascent for the following morning.

Setting off the Shikanosawa Hut then as you walk along the ridge to the summit of Nagatadake there are excellent views of the wonderful Candle Rock (ローソク岩展望台).

The choice at the summit of Nagatadake is to either return down the Nagata Trail or to continue beyond Nagatadake and take either the Okabu Trail or the Yodogawa Trail.