The Tour de Iwaki cycling event, Nov. 6, 2016 (ツール・ド・いわき 全国から 盛況でした 2016年11月6日)

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Iwaki City hosted a major cycling event today. About 1000 chariders or cyclists participated from across Japan. Iwaki City has the largest area in Fukushima and the route covered most of the coastline as well as broad range of inland area. A photo above shows a crowded starting line with so many cyclists at Aquamarine Park, Onahama district.

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Photo above shows one of five aid stations on the way. It is called Tsuruno-ashiyu, which means footbath for crane. It is located in the center of Yumoto district, where a large scale hot spring resort from 1200 years ago exists.

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Something special happened today. Some of my old colleagues at a company in Ibaraki Pref., where I retired five years ago, found me at the last aid station (18km to the goal) which was Natsuigawa Cycling Park. All of us were delighted to meet again (photo above) for the first time in 5 years and exchanged things occurred during the time. Then we all made the goal.

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I got a certificate of finish as shown above. I want to thank all the related people including volunteers for the safe return.

The exact route and locations are shown in the map below. The map can be scaled up and down with a click and scroll.
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You can play back the route and altitude on the map below. (Up:2.7%, gained elevation: 649m, Distance: 124.3km)
下の地図で、ルート再生や標高を見ることができます。(上り2.7%、獲得標高649m、走行距離 124.3km)

The Tour de Inawashiro in rain with huge participants, Oct. 8, 2016 (雨の中 ツール・ド・猪苗代 大盛況でした 2016年10月8日)

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Today was the Tour de Inawashiro day. Look at the huge line of participants shown above waiting to get started, even though it was a rainy day. This was the third year of the cycling event, supported by Koriyama City. It starts from Bandai-Atami hot spring resort in the city, travels around Lake Inawashiro, and then finally comes back to the same point, where the distance is about 90km.

A short footage of how it starts is shown below.

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I also participated in the event, and this was how it looked from behind the line. Early this morning, I pedaled from my home near Koriyama Station. I started around 9:12 and came back shortly before 15:00, then I hurried to my home before it gets dark. Total distance today was 126km including travel to and from my home. It rained heavily after we passed Noguchi Memorial Hall, all the way through the western shore of the lake. Everyone got soaked from top to bottom, even though we had rain suits on.

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Pedaling into Konanmachi (south of the lake) area, I found golden fields of autumn rice harvest as shown above. (Rain stopped at this time.)

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Photo above is a large zelkova tree at Tokoji Temple, where we stopped at for a short break. Local Konanmachi volunteers served us a delicious soba noodle bowl. Soba noodle is a great specialty of this town.

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Photo above is a certificate of finish which the organizer gave me. This time, support from staff members of the organizing committee was excellent. I would like to express my gratitude for all the supporters and volunteers.

The exact route and locations are shown in the map below. The map can be scaled up and down with a click and scroll. A part of GPS trace is missing.
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You can play back the route and altitude on the map below. (Up:3%, gained elevation: 950m, Distance: 126.3km)
下の地図で、ルート再生や標高を見ることができます。(上り3%、獲得標高950m、走行距離 126.3km)

【2014年10月11日】 Cycle aid Japan 2014 in 郡山 (Oct. 11, 2014: Cycle aid Japan in Koriyama, Fukushima Pref.)

本日は、サイクリングイベントの、 Cycle aid Japan 2014 in 郡山 に参加しました。郡山市の磐梯熱海温泉を出発し、 猪苗代湖 を 一周 して戻る、90km、約5.5時間のコースです。全国から、約800人が参加しました。
Today I joined in the cycling event called "Cycle aid Japan 2014 in Koriyama". The cycling started from Bandaiatami Onsen (hot spring) in Koriyama City, went around Lake Inawashiro, through Inawashiro Town and Aizuwakamatsu City, and then returned to the same point. The round distance was 90km and the time was around 5.5hours. Around 800 people attended from all over Japan.

The location and the actual route were shown in the map below. (The route data were from GPS log data. The details of the map and the altitude data can be seen by clicking the map.)
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磐梯熱海温泉の、郡山ユラックス熱海の駐車場での、開会式の様子です。写真の、郡山市の品川市長、などの挨拶がありました。隣にいるのは、郡山市のキャラクターの 楽都(がくと)くん です。
Above photo shows the opening ceremony at the parking lot of Koriyama Yracs Atami hot spring facility. Some guests made speech including Mr. Sinagawa the Mayor of Koriyama City. The character beside the mayor is the Koriyama City Character "Gakutokun".

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Above photo shows the view of starting. Twenty five cyclists started in a group at a time and then another 25 members three minutes after. This was a cycling event and not a race.

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猪苗代湖の西岸の中田浜の近くからの、猪苗代湖 と 磐梯山 の景色です。今日は、晴天に恵まれました。 場所は、地図の☆1です。 (中田浜、猪苗代湖、磐梯山、2014/10/11)
Above photo shows a view of Mt. Bandai and Lake Inawashiro from near Nakatahama Beach along the west shore of the lake. It was a clear day today. The location was shown as red asterisk 1 in the map.

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猪苗代湖南岸の船津公園の休憩所の様子と、そこからの猪苗代湖と磐梯山の景色です。場所は、地図の☆2です。 (船津公園、猪苗代湖、磐梯山、2014/10/11)
Above photos show a view at the aid (rest) station in Funatsu Park at the south shore of the lake, and also some another views of Mt. Bandai and Lake Inawashiro from there. The location was shown as red asterisk 2 in the map.

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ゴールしたとき、ステージでは、NHKの自転車番組 チャリダー の 猪野学 (いのまなぶ、俳優、写真の右)が話をしていました。また、今回は、過去のオリンピック選手3人が、コースの先導などの支援をしてもらっています。
When we made the goal, Mr. Manabu Ino who was a regular talent at NHK's bike program "Charider" (on the right in the above photo) was talking on the stage. Meanwhile, we also had various help from three former Olympic bike athletes such as pace maker.

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Because the check in time had been from early in the morning, I stayed last night near the starting point of the event. As I had been interested in Motoyu Onsen from before which was a day use hot spring bath nearby, I visited there this time. This hot spring had an original traditional hot spring source which had been said good for skin health instead of the common Bandaiatami hot spring mixture source which all the other hot spring facilities use. Above photos show the entrance of the Moroyu Onsen and the original spring source hut in the back. Inside the facility it was so old that I first hesitated to proceed, and what made me surprise was that the spring source water of only 31 degrees Celsius was flowing to the bath as it was with no heating. Despite all these, many local people were there enjoying the bath. And it was a mystery that my skin became very much smooth after I left the Motoyu Onsen.
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